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Bulletin ID: No. 53 - American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 Social Security Payment

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (the “Recovery Act”) authorizes a one-time payment of $250 to people receiving Social Security or SSI benefits. In order to receive the payment, an individual must be eligible for Social Security or SSI during the months of November 2008, December 2008 or January 2009.

The Recovery Act also provides for a one-time payment of $250 to Veterans Affairs (“VA”) and Railroad Retirement Board (“RRB”) beneficiaries. The VA and RRB will be responsible for paying individuals under their respective programs. However, if someone receives Social Security and SSI, VA or RRB benefits, he or she will receive only one $250 payment.

The Social Security Administration has prepared a fact sheet about the one-time payment for your use and further distribution to staff and consumers. Additional information about this one-time payment, including a listing of Frequently Asked Questions, is also available from the Social Security Administration’s website (www.ssa.gov).

The Social Security Administration expects to release the one-time payments, through the USTreasury in May 2009. Payments will be made separately from the monthly benefit payment and will be distributed in the same manner. This means that if an individual’s SSI benefits are direct deposited into a bank account, the one-time payment will also be direct deposited into a bank account. If an individual’s SSI benefits are payable to a representative payee, then the one-time payment will be made payable to the representative payee.

People who believe that they are eligible for the payment and do not receive it, are asked not to contact the Social Security Administration until after June 4, 2009.

Please pass this information along to your staff or anyone else who may receive inquiries from consumers or providers about the one-time payment.