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Can SSI Be Garnished for Child Support?

Category Child Support
Some state and federal assistance programs can be garnished to pay child support. This is a guide about "Can SSI be garnished for child support?".
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By 0 found this helpful
February 23, 2011

My ex owes $25,000 in back child support and just got SSI with a lump sum of money how does that work?

By ppattt from Fort Myers, FL

Answers

February 6, 20131 found this helpful
Best Answer

SSI can absolutely NOT be garnished for child or spousal support.

I waited the 5 years to allow the SSDI to drop away so that I could SPECIFICALLY collect SSI (I 'owe' a great deal of ransom...errrr...'child support') and flip the bird to the ex.

Further, all 'license suspensions', ie : drivers, professional, hunting, fishing, ect....are null & void once SSI kicks in. (including, but not limited to passport seizures).

I can't tell you the satisfaction I feel when I mail a copy of my SSI award letter to (along with a note with a middle-finger watermark) to support collection unit demanding they void their driver's license suspensions once a year.

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July 22, 20130 found this helpful
Best Answer

No! SSDI and Social Security can be garnished for child support, but SSI can't be garnished. The reason is that SSI is not considered as income, in the sense that the recipient earned it or that it comes from earnings that was paid in to Social Security.

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SSI does not come from the Social Security fund, but is given to low income people who don't qualify for Social Security or SSDI, and SSI is not considered as income, like Social Security and SSDI is.

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By 0 found this helpful
June 2, 2016

My children's father just recently went and filed something that stated that he is not ordered to pay child support to me anymore due to him receiving SSI. He has paid in the past and it was a very small amount for 2 kids. I have done everything. I went to the child support office and now am being told that if I wanted to receive any type of support then I will need to hire an private attorney.

Is there something that can prevent the other spouse from paying child support for the kids due to this parent receiving Social Security income? Please help and steer me in the right direction. I don't get it. I have never seen a state send correspondence stating that the father is not responsible after the children are legitimized.

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June 3, 20161 found this helpful
Best Answer

Only the Social Security Administration can answer your questions. You can make an appointment at your local SSA office to address your questions.

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If your husband is not able to work and is receiving benefits from SSI, the child support payments should be deducted from his benefit and paid to you for your children. You should check with SSA for answers.

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By 0 found this helpful
April 12, 2018

If a person gets or receives SSI benefits, by law in Kentucky can a court make that person pay child support?

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April 12, 20180 found this helpful
Best Answer

A person pays child support based on what s/he has. If the person doesn't have enough assets, I don't think the court can force the person to pay. If the person has SSI, they don't have a lot of cash in the bank or other assets. The SSI helps them maintain a minimal standard of living.

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By 0 found this helpful
June 4, 2018

Social Security has stopped my child support. The letter says child support can not take SSI/SSD money for child support! They still have not approved his Social Security disability.

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He has been waiting 9 months, and got the letter about child support being stopped a month ago. My question is does this mean they will approve his Social Security disability?

Answers

June 4, 20180 found this helpful

That is something only Social Security, not any one of us, can answer.

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June 4, 20180 found this helpful

If you don't have a lawyer, you may want to contact your local legal aide (free or discounted legal help) to address your questions and intervene if needed. These types of issues need experts who know all of the rules and laws and the right people to contact. Good luck!! Hope it all works out.

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June 4, 20180 found this helpful

You can call SSI and ask for guidance as every case is different. The number is 1-800-772-1213. Tell them where you're calling from and that you're having issues and need guidance.

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June 7, 20180 found this helpful

There is SSI and SSDI and there is a world of difference in the two programs. (There is no SSD.)

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  • You say that SS has stopped your child support so does that mean that their father was paying child support through a court order in the past?
  • First - if their father is granted SSI then the letter is correct in that child support cannot be taken out of the SSI benefit that he receives. This does not change from state to state - it is valid in the US.
  • If you received a letter from the SSA about child support then it most likely means his claim has been approved.
  • The most important thing that you can do is to go to the Social Security Administration office ASAP and present the letter so they can tell you officially where you stand. (You will not be able to draw any support money if his SSI was approved.)
  • If he has been awarded SSDI then that is an entirely different story so you have to be SURE of what his benefit claim is (SSI or SSDI).
  • Also, if he is behind in support payments then you may be able to receive a portion of whatever back payment check they award him (SSI or SSDI).
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  • If he has been waiting for 9 months then he will receive a check that will cover all of the months since he filled his claim.
  • You may be entitled to receive a portion of this check for any unpaid child support but you have to act fast to claim it.
  • If he already has the check (and cashed it) you may not be able to receive any of this money as the SSA will not help you recover any money after the check has been mailed and cashed.

Please go in person as SSA will not do anything over the telephone and this has to be done soon.

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June 7, 20180 found this helpful

I forgot to add this information:

Can Disability Payments Be Garnished?
Whether or not your disability payments can be garnished depends on which type of disability benefits you receive and whether or not your child support payments are current. SSI (Supplemental Security Income) disability payments are made to people who have a very low income. These payments cannot be garnished for child support payments. SSDI (Social Security Disability Insurance) payments, however, can be garnished to fulfill child support obligations.
Can Back Pay Be Garnished?
If you are entitled to a lump sum of back pay and you owe past-due child support, your back pay can be garnished to satisfy this debt. While your entire back payment will not be taken from you, a percentage of it may be garnished in order to fulfill your child support obligation.

www.nolo.com/.../how-get-child-support-order-modified...

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By 0 found this helpful
July 27, 2017

I have a question and I don't know what to do. My kids' dad is trying to get on SSI to get himself more help and so he won't have to pay child support. I'm just worried where I'm supposed to go from here. I am a single mom raising three kids.

Answers

July 27, 20170 found this helpful

Is your child support paid through the court? Hopefully that is the case and Social Security will work with the court per child support is concerned.
The first thing I would suggest is to get all papers pertaining to your divorce and child support as well as everyone's Social Security numbers (including your ex-husbands) and pay a visit to your local Social Security office. Explain the situation to them so they will have all the information on their records even before the SSI is approved or disapproved. If your ex is in arrears with child support you also need proof of this as that is the only way you may be able to receive any part of a delayed payment check that your ex may receive if his claim is approved (his claim starts when he first applied and if approved, he will receive a check for how ever many months he waited for approval). This is sometimes a large check but if he is up to date on child support then none of that will be yours but if he is behind in payments, you can get SS to pay at least part of those arrears from that check. But, you must have proof of payments and non-payments.
Gather all your records (or go without some and find them later) and go to the SS office ASAP.

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July 28, 20170 found this helpful

This is a legal question. Consult Legal Aid if you can't afford a lawyer.

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October 10, 20171 found this helpful

You cannot get any of his SSI benefits. SSI is not counted as income.it is granted to those that haven't had enough work time in to get disability. Disability is an income, SSI is not. Also if he actually gets SSI benefits realize that he is truly disabled, not faking

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May 4, 20180 found this helpful

Does this apply in Texas as well?

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By 0 found this helpful
March 28, 2017

I have an ex who filed for child support. I know she can't get anything because I get SSI. But they made me take a DNA test for two kids. If one of the kids ain't mine are they going to make me pay for the DNA test for the kid that ain't mine and for the kids that is mine due to me getting SSI?

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March 28, 20170 found this helpful

"They" as in the government, state (?) is requesting you to take a DNA test. Wouldn't they be the one supplying the test though?

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March 29, 20170 found this helpful

I would assume the government is paying for the test. I know that people who have to take drug tests prior to employment don't pay; the employer pays.

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March 29, 20170 found this helpful

When they are ordering it and having you do it, you are not liable for the expense.

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March 30, 20170 found this helpful

You do not say who "they" happens to be so we cannot say whether you will have to pay or not. You should have received a paper showing your responsibility for payment (or non-payment) when you were "made" to have this done.
There must be a reason your ex is having this done but it is true that child support cannot be taken out of SSI (but can be taken out of SSD).
You need to talk to whoever "made" you do this for your answer (someone other than your ex).

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February 23, 20110 found this helpful

My ex husband and I have been divorced for three years. After the split he filed for SSI with a claim of mental health issues resulting from my leaving, and he got approved.

So now I have a three year old little girl who literally gets nothing from him and I was wondering if since he gets SSI if she could draw from that and receive help as well. There is no court ordered child support agreement, since he had no income at the time I filed. I just said I could do it on my own (I really really just needed him to stay away from us). So what can I do now?

By heather from Indianapolis, IN

Answers:

Can SSI Be Garnished for Child Support?

The child should be eligible. Check with your social security office. (12/03/2010)

By don

Can SSI Be Garnished for Child Support?

SSI cannot be garnished for child support. If he were receiving Social Security Disability (SSA) benefits your child could also be signed up to receive from his account. Unfortunately, unless he becomes employable and gets a job and ceases to receive SSI or is somehow deemed eligible for SSA/disability benefits, you are at a stand still on receiving anything from him. Sorry. (12/03/2010)

By Brenda

Can SSI Be Garnished for Child Support?

Call your Child Support Office and ask them some of these questions. (12/03/2010)

By Joan

Can SSI Be Garnished for Child Support?

Don't ask advice from people who may not give you the correct answer. Look at the different answers you got from here. My opinion is that you can get something for your child. It will not be taken from his benefits, but will be based on his benefits and will come from Social security. Please call or go to your local office. They will not "run you through the mill". That is not what they are paid to do. They will treat you with respect and see that you receive anything you are entitled to. (12/03/2010)

By Lilac

Can SSI Be Garnished for Child Support?

I agree, contact your local SS office. My ex was on S. S. disability and he worked with his case worker to get S.S. benefits sent to me for my son. I was lucky enough to get over $500 per month for several years until my son turned 18.
(12/03/2010)

By kathy

Can SSI Be Garnished for Child Support?

As others have said, seek the council from the Social Security Office themselves. The are very helpful with these situations. The only thing not in your favor is there was no court ordered support at the time of your divorce. They may say he has no legal obligation to you and not be able to help. The only thing you can do then is ask him directly. Sorry, it doesn't sound like he has any interest in helping you and your daughter.

The only other possible thing would be to consult a lawyer. If you were not awarded child support at the time because of him being unemployed then that might be something that can be changed now that he is on SSI. From your description it sounds like he is actually on Social Security Disability. That is a whole other ball of wax. Again talk to the SS Office. (12/03/2010)

By Suntydt

Can SSI Be Garnished for Child Support?

Go to this website: indianajustice.org (12/04/2010)

By susan

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