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LawTalk, Attorney
Category: Social Security
Satisfied Customers: 34913
Experience:  I have 30 years of legal and litigation experience, including representing clients before the U.S. Social Security Administration.
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My brother is homeless in SC. he has not worked in 25 years.

Customer Question

my brother is homeless in SC. he has not worked in 25 years. we want to know if we could get him any kind of SSecurity help?
we have his SS card, and a copy of his birth certificate. he does not have a current picture ID and can't get one since he is homeless.
Submitted: 4 months ago.
Category: Social Security
Expert:  LawTalk replied 4 months ago.

Good evening Kathy,

I'm Doug, and I'm very sorry to hear of your brother's situation. My goal is to provide you with excellent service today. In order to give you a clear and concise answer, I will need some additional information about the circumstances, please.

1. What is his age?

2. Did he work at least 10 years during his lifetime, earning income and paying into social security via taxes?


Customer: replied 4 months ago.
he was born in 1964 so he is 52
I'm sure he worked some, but I don't know how long.
Expert:  LawTalk replied 4 months ago.

Good evening Kathy,

Thank you for the additional information you provided.

As your brother has not worked at least 5 of the past 10 years, and as he is 10 years from being old enough to qualify for social security, there are no social security benefits that he can possibly qualify for at this time. Social security is not a form of welfare that is based on need and lack of income or assets, but rather is a benefit that must be paid into to qualify for and has rather stringent rules for collecting any benefits before the age of 62.

Base on the facts that you have provided, if he is determined to be legally disabled then he might well qualify for Supplemental Security Income (SSI)---not to be confused with social security----and which is a welfare based benefit and requires a proven disability combined with lack of income and assets.

For purposes of SSI eligibility, the definition of disability is as follows:

"Disability" under SSI is based on ones inability to work. SSI considers someone disabled under SSI rules if:

  • A person cannot do work that they did before;
  • SSI decides that you cannot adjust to other work because of one's medical/mental condition(s); and
  • One's disability has lasted or is expected to last for at least one year or is expected to result in death.

In order to be deemed disabled, your brother would have to be declared so by a physician and so getting him to a physician would be absolutely necessary, and seems to be something that your brother is not willing to do. So, given his reluctance to see a physician, then even SSI is not going to be available to him. I am very sorry.

I understand that you may be disappointed by the Answer you received, as it was not particularly favorable to your situation. Had I been able to provide an Answer which might have given you a successful legal outcome, it would have been my pleasure to do so.

If you have additional questions, you may of course reply back to me and I will be happy to continue to assist you further until your questions have been answered to your satisfaction.

Would you please take a moment to positively rate my service to you based on the understanding of the law I provided by clicking on the rating stars---three stars or more. It is that easy. That is the way I am compensated for having helped you.

Thank you in advance. I wish you the best in your future,


Expert:  LawTalk replied 4 months ago.

Good morning,

Do you have any additional questions that you would like me to address for you?

In case you would like a phone call to further discuss these issues you have raised, I will make that offer to you. You are certainly not obligated to accept a call offer, but many people do find it helpful for clarification purposes, as well as to allow them to ask additional questions.

As I have provided you with the information you asked for, would you please now rate my service to you so I can be compensated for assisting you?

Thanks in advance,


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