Sara Routhier, Managing Editor and Outreach Director, has professional experience as an educator, SEO specialist, and content marketer. She has over five years of experience in the insurance industry. As a researcher, data nerd, writer, and editor she strives to curate educational, enlightening articles that provide you with the must-know facts and best-kept secrets within the overwhelming world o...

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Joel Ohman is the CEO of a private equity-backed digital media company. He is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™, author, angel investor, and serial entrepreneur who loves creating new things, whether books or businesses. He has also previously served as the founder and resident CFP® of a national insurance agency, Real Time Health Quotes. He also has an MBA from the University of South Florida. ...

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Reviewed by Joel Ohman
Founder, CFP®

UPDATED: Aug 3, 2021

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Yes, borrowers can still obtain a payday loan if they are on Social Security. Many cash advance borrowers are not working due to retirement or disability. Social Security provides these people with money that is not always adequate, hence the need for cash advances.

While payday loans articles often speak exclusively to employed borrowers, the fact remains that as the baby boomer generation continues to retire, more and more of its members will begin to rely on Social Security for income. The amount may be adequate some months. If a sudden emergency comes up, they may not have enough saved to pay for it. This is where a payday lender may come in.

How Much Can A Borrower Get Based on Social Security?

Even though payday loan lenders do not require that a borrower have a job, they do require that an applicant have a source of income. Fortunately, Social Security qualifies as a source of income. As a result, lenders will likely have to view a copy of the Social Security award letter in order to confirm the source of income. As with all cash advances, a copy of the borrower’s bank statement will also be necessary to confirm if the borrower even has a record of income and savings. The amount you get each month along with credit scores and other factors will determine the amount you are eligible for.

Due to the plethora of online payday lenders, a large number are willing to work with applicants that are on Social Security. However, prospective borrowers must remain aware that not every lender will be willing to work with them. Borrowers may have to shop around between different lenders before finding one that caters to customers that only have Social Security as a source of income.

Applicants who have Social Security as their only form of income may be hesitant to accurately fill out an application form. This is ill-advised since falsifying information for a loan is a form of fraud. Being upfront and open with a lender is the surest way to obtain a payday loan and avoid other problems.

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Should Social Security Recipients Use Payday Loans?

If you’re in need of more money, you should never borrow more than you can pay back. In the case of payday loans, it should be paid back in the next cycle (or within about 30 days with interest). The interest rates are extremely high, and many borrowers can get into a cycle of debt with an extended loan term.

Credit unions may offer lower interest alternatives with fixed payments that will lead to a full payoff in a set time. You can submit an online application and get a fully disclosed annual percentage rate. Some credit unions may even offer different kinds of cash advances without as many complications.

If you don’t have disposable income from social security even in a good month and that’s your only source of income, any loan is not advisable including low-interest personal loans. Short-term loans are just an extreme example of how the process can aggravate existing issues.