Collecting Social Security for Disabled Child
Can I Collect Social Security for My Disabled Child?
In this article our experienced Los Angeles area Social Security lawyers discuss how and when a parent can collect Social Security for their disabled child.
How Do I Apply for SSI for a Disabled Child?
The application for SSI for a child is somewhat different than applying for an adult. The child’s parent or legal guardian will need to complete an Application for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) AND a Child Disability Report.
The Child Disability Report needs to contain detailed information about the child’s disabling condition and how it affects his or her ability to function. A specific medical diagnosis from the child’s physician should be included, as well as detailed examples of how the disability impacts the child’s ability to live a normal life.
The Child Disability Report can be completed online. But the Application for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) for the child must be done in person at the Social Security Office or – in some cases – may be done by phone.
Children from birth up to age 18 may get Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits, if:
1. They are disabled; and,
2. They have little or no income and resources.
Note that the Social Security Administration will also consider the family’s household income, and the family’s resources and other personal information when determining if the child meets the “little or no income” requirement.
How Does Social Security Decide If A Child Is Disabled?
Social Security has a strict & limited definition of disability for a child.
To be considered disabled, the child must have a physical or mental condition(s) that:
- Very seriously limits his or her activities; and
- Has lasted, or is expected to last, at least 1 year – or result in death.
When the disability decision is being made, the parent or legal guardian will be asked to supply medical records and documentation as well as school records and reports or statements from other people who know about the child.
If it is determined that more information is needed to determine if the child is disabled, an examination or test for the child will be scheduled, which will be paid for by the Social Security Administration.
How Long Does it Take to Get SSI Benefits for a Disabled Child?
Our experienced Social Security lawyers have found that typically it can take 4 to 6 months for the Social Security Administration to decide if a child’s SSI disability claim will be granted. It is very important to make sure that the SSA has your current or updated address or telephone number if it has changed, so that they can get in touch with you.
Hiring an experienced Social Security lawyer can often help move the child’s disability claim along faster because an experienced lawyer will know exactly what type of information and documentation that the SSA is looking for – and be able to submit it in a timely and appropriate manner.
Can Children and Young People Who get SSI Disability Benefits Work?
Typically, the SSA does not count most of a child’s earnings when calculating a child’s SSI disability payment. And, if the child is a student the SSA will count even less of a child’s earnings.
Also, if a disabled child is age 15 or older, he or she is allowed to establish a Plan to Achieve Self-Support (PASS) that enables them to set aside income for a work goal. This income is also not considered when the SSA determines the SSI payment.
Additionally, a disabled child’s Medicaid coverage can continue even if his or her earnings are high enough to stop SSI payment – as long as this or her earnings remain beneath a certain amount.
Los Angeles Social Security Lawyers for Disabled Children
If you are the parent or legal guardian of a disabled child, and you have questions about how filing a Social Security Disability (SSDI) claim for them, call our experienced Social Security lawyers today for a free consultation. We care about you and your child and we are here to help you.