SASSA Means Test

The South African Social Security Agency (SASSA) is dedicated to offering social welfare to millions of individuals below the poverty line through social grant payments, aimed at providing financial assistance to families lacking proper support in South Africa.

If you are a SASSA social grant beneficiary and have received a ‘declined’ status after your means test failed, you can find more information about the reasons in this blog post.

SASSA Means Test

You should be aware that SASSA verifies each and every applicant’s eligibility through means testing every month. The national agency conducts cross-database verifications with NSFAS, UIF, and other government databases to check your ID and records. This is done to ensure that no beneficiary receives duplicate grants or is registered with multiple government institutions. Additionally, SASSA verifies with the Department of Home Affairs to confirm the status of deceased applicants to prevent false claims for dead person’s grants.

SASSA Means Test Infographics for Sassa Grant Applications Approval Process

When you apply for a SASSA social grant, your application goes through an assessment called the SASSA Means Test.

This test involves evaluating your income and assets against specific thresholds to determine your eligibility for the grant.

This evaluation occurs from the time of application submission and continues through periodic reviews.

To ensure equitable grant distribution and counter fraudulent claims, the Department of Social Development has implemented the SASSA Means Test to maintain justice.

This assessment entails evaluating an applicant’s assets and income against predetermined thresholds, while also verifying beneficiaries to ensure they are not simultaneously receiving other social grants.

Asset Thresholds (Per Annum)

  1. Your individual assets must not exceed R1,372,800.
  2. For married individuals, the combined assets with your spouse mustn’t exceed R2,745,600. (Important to note: the value of your residence isn’t counted, regardless of ownership.)

Income Thresholds (Per Annum)

  1. Individually, your yearly earnings should not exceed R96,840 (equivalent to R8,070 monthly).
  2. If you’re married, the combined annual income with your spouse must not cross R193,680 (equivalent to R16,140 monthly).

In addition to the fundamental criteria, each SASSA social grant, including the Older Persons, Disability, and War Veteran’s Grant, has its specific requirements for asset and income thresholds, which are evaluated through the means test process.

SASSA Means Test for SASSA Grants

All SASSA grants undergo means testing to ensure that only eligible individuals receive SASSA payments. You can check the means test, asset, and income thresholds for various SASSA grants below.

Child Support Grant

  1. For singles, the annual income limit is R60,000 (equivalent to R5,000 monthly).
  2. For married individuals, the joint annual income with a spouse should not exceed R120,000 (equivalent to R10,000 monthly).

Care Dependency Grant

  1. Single parents or primary caregivers must not have an annual income exceeding R249,600 (equivalent to R20,800 monthly).
  2. Married caregivers must ensure that their joint annual income with a spouse remains under R499,200 (equivalent to R41,600 monthly).

Disability Grant

  1. The annual income limit for a single individual is R96,840 (equivalent to R8,070 monthly).
  2. Married individuals should not have a joint annual income exceeding R193,680 (equivalent to R16,140 monthly).

Older Persons Grant

  1. A single person’s annual income must not surpass R96,840 (equivalent to R8,070 monthly).
  2. Married individuals should ensure that their joint annual income with a spouse stays below R193,680 (equivalent to R16,140 monthly).

War Veterans Grant

  1. For single individuals, the annual income should not exceed R96,840 (equivalent to R8,070 monthly).
  2. Married individuals must keep their joint annual income with a spouse under R193,680 (equivalent to R16,140 monthly).

Foster Child Grant

The Foster Child grant is specifically designed for individuals who have been legally appointed by a Court to care for a child not biologically their own.

  1. The government requires evidence proving the genuine financial need of court-appointed foster child caregivers.

SRD R350 Grant

  1. There is no impact of the means test on the SASSA SRD R350 grant. The maximum income threshold is R624 per month.
  2. The SRD Grant, crucial in assisting unemployed South Africans aged 18 to 59 without a source of income, will continue to provide support at the current level of R350.
  3. Its extension until 31 March 2024 underscores SASSA’s dedication to aiding this demographic during challenging times.

Verification Process and Key Considerations

  1. SASSA verifies information through databases like NSFAS, UIF, and SARS to ensure accurate grant distribution and prevent misuse.
  2. Individual income and assets assessment for single individuals; joint assessment for married/partnered applicants.
  3. Marital property arrangement doesn’t affect the test outcome.
  4. Pensioners, disabled, and war veterans’ grant amounts are affected by private income.
  5. Unmarried applicants’ means test depends on the candidate’s income and assets.
  6. The means test applies regardless of marriage type (community of property or not).
  7. Grants for Older Persons, Disabled Candidates, and War Veterans follow a sliding scale: higher private income, and smaller government grants.

SASSA Notice Growing Number of Beneficiaries

With a notable rise in beneficiaries, surpassing 46% of South Africans receiving social grant benefits in 2022, SASSA has introduced comprehensive means tests for various grant categories to avoid fraudulent activities.

This surge in demand happened after the successful launch of SASSA’s online application platform and the inclusion of an appeals process for declined grants.

By embracing these changes, SASSA strives to streamline application processes and alleviate queues at local offices nationwide, ensuring beneficiaries encounter a smoother journey when applying for their Social Grants.

SASSA Social Grant Increased (Effective from April 2023)

As part of ongoing efforts to support recipients, SASSA has increased the payment amount for all grant types, effective from 1 April 2023. Notable adjustments include:

  1. The Older Persons Grant, for individuals aged 60 to 74, will be elevated to R2,080, while those over 75 will receive R2,100.
  2. Recipients of the Disability Grant and the Care Dependency Grant will also benefit from an increase to R2,080.
  3. The Child Support Grant will see an increase to R500, with the top-up rising to R250.
  4. The Foster Child grant will be raised to R1,120, while the War Veteran grant will see an increase to R2,100.
  5. Additionally, the Grant-In-Aid will experience an upswing to R500.

Future Incremental Progress for SASSA Grants

SASSA’s commitment to enhancing the lives of beneficiaries remains steadfast, as further incremental increases are slated to take effect from 1 October 2024.

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