Aged, Blind, Disabled (ABD): Income – Social Security COLA and Continued Eligibility

When the annual Cost-of-Living Adjustment (COLA) makes a client over income, their benefit can remain open until the new standards come out.

Social Security’s COLA (for both SSI and RSDI), if there is one, begins with the January benefit.

DHS decides the standards for the SSP, which are based on the SSI standards. If the SSP standards are changed, the change occurs in January when the SSI COLA begins.

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) decides the standards for QMBP, SLMB and QI-1. These standards change in April.

Due to the differences in implementation dates, clients whose income is close to the standard for their benefit may be over income till CMS issues the changes in the standards. Due to this discrepancy, DHS practice is to override the income edit until the new standards take effect on April 1. Notify your supervisor if the county override needs to be used.

NOTE: If the client is over income for any other reason than the Social Security COLA (such as new employment), the income edit is not overridden.

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