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SSI & the Disabled Child

Caring for a disabled child can be a challenging task for the parents. In many cases, providing the child with the appropriate level of daily care, guidance, and emotional support can be a full-time job in itself. If your child has disabilities, he or she may qualify for Supplemental Security Income (SSI).

SSI disburses monthly payments to low income individuals with limited resources who are blind, disabled, or 65 or older. However, a child under the age of 18 may qualify if he or she meets Social Security’s definition of disability for children, and their income and resources does not exceed the eligibility limits.

Eligibility Requirements for SSI

When deciding if a disabled child qualifies for SSI, first the Social Security Administration will consider the income and resources of the child, and the family members living in the same household. This applies to children living at home, or away at school but under the parents’ control.

Generally speaking, if the income and resources of the child and the family members in the same household are more than the allowable amount, the application for SSI will be denied.

Meeting the Definition of a “Disability”

Your child must meet the definition of disabled to qualify for SSI:

  • Your child must have a physical or mental condition, or combination thereof, that has resulted in “marked and severe functional limitations.” Such a condition must seriously limit your child’s daily activities.
  • Your child’s disabling condition must be expected to last at least 12 months, or result in death.

If your child has a seriously disabling condition that will last at least 12 months, the SSA will likely determine that your child is disabled.

When you apply for SSI benefits on behalf of your child, you will be asked to provide critical information about your child’s medical condition, and how his or her condition has interfered with your daily activities. You will also be asked to give permission for your child’s teachers, doctors, and other specialists to send information to the SSA.

Examples of conditions that may qualify:

  • Down syndrome
  • Total blindness or deafness
  • Cerebral palsy
  • Muscular dystrophy
  • HIV infection
  • Severe intellectual disorder (age 7 or older)

Searching for an attorney in Plano or Dallas to assist you with an SSI or SSDI case? Contact the Zendeh Del Law Firm, PLLC to speak with a highly knowledgeable lawyer who will protect your interests!