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What Happens If You Inherit Money While on Section 8?

Gaining your inheritance can be a silver lining during a challenging time. It can make it easier for you to cover your bills and get your affairs in order as you work through the grieving process and manage the rest of your circumstances. However, inheriting while receiving government assistance, such as Section 8 housing, may raise more questions about allowable assets and whether your inheritance will affect where you live.

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What Is Section 8?

When your annual income is below 50% of your area’s median income, you become eligible for Section 8, a housing program developed by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Section 8 vouchers cover a sizeable portion of rental costs, often leaving tenants to cover only about 30% of rent and utilities combined. To use section 8 vouchers:

  • You must fit your area’s qualification for low income.
  • You must be older than 24 or have children, be disabled or be a veteran.
  • You must be a U.S. citizen or an immigration-eligible non-citizen.
  • You must not have had drug-related evictions or serious lease violations in the last three years.
  • The property owner of your rental must accept Section 8 vouchers.

How Does Your Inheritance Affect Section 8 Availability?

Many government-funded programs consider two money sources — income and assets. Income represents anything you earn from your job and other sources of money that regularly contribute to your funds, such as social security, disability and child support. The Section 8 system uses your income to determine your continued eligibility in their program.

However, Section 8 is one of the programs that only looks at your assets in tandem if you generate income from them. If you receive your inheritance as a lump sum, it falls under the allowable assets category, meaning that it cannot be held against you or factored into your Section 8 income.

What Happens If You Don’t Report Income to Section 8?

If you receive your inheritance in installments rather than one lump sum, it may be counted as income rather than assets. This decision could affect how HUD calculates your income. If you’re on Section 8 and can choose how to receive your inheritance, only accepting a lump sum will allow you to keep your benefits.

This situation changes if you receive your inheritance while unemployed and it becomes your primary source of income. In this case, the money is treated as income derived from assets. It becomes the income HUD bases your Section 8 eligibility upon.

Whether your inheritance qualifies as an asset or income, ensure you report it to HUD. Otherwise, you may be held liable for additional fees and penalties.

Get an Advance on Your Inheritance Today

Now that you know your inheritance likely won’t count against your Section 8 participation, you can access it freely and use the money however you need. If your money is stuck in probate, Inheritance Funding can deliver it to you today. Simply fill out our application, and we’ll send your advance as soon as the same day.