Social Security News
MARCH 2017
Celebrating Those Who Provide Care: Social Security’s Representative Payee Program

According to the Census Bureau, there are nearly 57 million people living with disabilities in the United States. Thirty percent of
American adults help provide care for a sick or disabled family member.

Social Security works closely with caregivers through our Representative Payee Program. A representative payee is someone
who receives and oversees the Social Security or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits for an adult or child who cannot
manage his or her benefits. You can learn more about our Representative Payee Program at

A representative payee is usually a trusted family member or friend of the beneficiary, but when friends or family are not able to
serve as representative payees, Social Security looks for qualified individuals or organizations to represent the beneficiary. You
can learn about becoming a representative payee by watching our new series of training videos on the duties of a representative
payee at

Receiving HUD Benefits? A Trip to Social Security May Not be Necessary

Social Security is constantly evolving to make doing business with us easier. If your client is currently receiving benefits from the
U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), and is reapplying for benefits, or is assisting someone with their
application, a trip to a Social Security office is probably not necessary — even if verification of Social Security benefits is needed.
Because of a data exchange established between Social Security and HUD, most people do not need to contact Social Security
for a benefit verification letter. HUD administrators processing a Recertification Application for Housing Assistance can use their
Enterprise Income Verification (EIV) System to verify Social Security and Supplemental Security Income benefits.

Public housing agencies, private owners, and management agents who run HUD rental assistance programs may get
registration information about EIV by logging onto the HUD portal or visiting

If your client is a new applicant for housing assistance, they can provide their HUD administrator with their Social Security award
letter, Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA) notice, SSA-1099, or other Social Security benefit document.

Your clients can also get an instant benefit verification letter online with a my Social Security account at

LGBT Communities can Count on Social Security

In 2015, the U.S. Supreme Court issued a decision in Obergefell v. Hodges, holding that same-sex couples have a constitutional
right to marry in all states and have their marriage recognized by other states. This decision made it possible for more same-sex
couples and their families to benefit from our programs.

We now recognize same-sex couples’ marriages in all states, and some non-marital legal relationships (such as some civil
unions and domestic partnerships), for purposes of determining entitlement to Social Security benefits and Medicare, and
eligibility and payment amount for Supplemental Security Income (SSI). We also recognize same-sex marriages and some non-
marital legal relationships established in foreign jurisdictions for purposes of determining entitlement to Social Security benefits
and Medicare, and SSI.

Social Security is committed to treating all Americans fairly. This commitment extends to Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and
Transgender people covered by Social Security’s many programs. We encourage anyone who believes they may be eligible for
benefits to apply now. Learn more at