In-Kind Support and Maintenance

§ 416.1130. Introduction.

(a) General. Both earned income and unearned income include items received in kind (§ 416.1102). Generally, we value in-kind items at their current market value and we apply the various exclusions for both earned and unearned income. However, we have special rules for valuing food or shelter that is received as unearned income (in-kind support and maintenance). This section and the ones that follow discuss these rules. In these sections (§§ 416.1130 through 416.1148) we use the in-kind support and maintenance you receive in the month as described in § 416.420 to determine your SSI benefit. We value the in-kind support and maintenance using the Federal benefit rate for the month in which you receive it. Exception: For the first 2 months for which a cost-of-living adjustment applies, we value in-kind support and maintenance you receive using the VTR or PMV based on the Federal benefit rate as increased by the cost-of-living adjustment.

Example:  Mr. Jones receives an SSI benefit which is computed by subtracting one-third from the Federal benefit rate. This one-third represents the value of the income he receives because he lives in the household of a son who provides both food and shelter (in-kind support and maintenance). In January, we increase his SSI benefit because of a cost-of-living adjustment. We base his SSI payment for that month on the food and shelter he received from his son two months earlier in November. In determining the value of that food and shelter he received in November, we use the Federal benefit rate for January.

(b) How we define in-kind support and maintenance. In-kind support and maintenance means any food or shelter that is given to you or that you receive because someone else pays for it. Shelter includes room, rent, mortgage payments, real property taxes, heating fuel, gas, electricity, water, sewerage, and garbage collection services. You are not receiving in-kind support and maintenance in the form of room or rent if you are paying the amount charged under a business arrangement. A business arrangement exists when the amount of monthly rent required to be paid equals the current market rental value (see § 416.1101). Exception: In the States in the Seventh Circuit (Illinois, Indiana, and Wisconsin), a business arrangement exists when the amount of monthly rent required to be paid equals or exceeds the presumed maximum value described in § 416.1140(a)(1). In those States, if the required amount of rent is less than the presumed maximum value, we will impute as in-kind support and maintenance, the difference between the required amount of rent and either the presumed maximum value or the current market value, whichever is less. In addition, cash payments to uniformed service members as allowances for on-base housing or privatized military housing are in-kind support and maintenance.

(c) How we value in-kind support and maintenance. Essentially, we have two rules for valuing the in-kind support and maintenance which we must count. The one-third reduction rule applies if you are living in the household of a person who provides you with both food and shelter (§§ 416.1131 through 416.1133). The presumed value rule applies in all other situations where you are receiving countable in-kind support and maintenance (§§ 416.1140 through 416.1145). If certain conditions exist, we do not count in-kind support and maintenance. These are discussed in §§ 416.1141 through 416.1145.

[45 FR 65547, Oct. 3, 1980, as amended at 50 FR 48574, Nov. 26, 1985; 51 FR 13488, Apr. 21, 1986; 60 FR 16375, Mar. 30, 1995; 63 FR 33546, June 19, 1998; 70 FR 6345, Feb. 7, 2005; 75 FR 54287, Sept. 7, 2010]