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Understanding Disability Benefits for Children

Most Americans are already aware that Supplemental Security Income provides benefits for those with low incomes, disabilities, and for people who are 65 years of age or older. But did you know that children could qualify for disability benefits as well? If you’ve already received social security disability benefits and your child meets the requirements, he or she could receive disability benefits as well. Working with a social security disability lawyer will help you determine whether you and your child qualify.

Guidelines for Disability Benefits for Children

Whether the child is your biological or adopted child, stepchild, or grandchild dependent, disability benefits may be granted. If you’re already working with a social security disability lawyer for your own disability benefits, then be sure to discuss benefits for your child as well. To get disability benefits:

· Your child must be under 18 years old. The only exception is if your child is a full-time student – then he or she may receive disability benefits until age 19. However, if the child’s disability didn’t arise until after age 18, but before the age of 22, then he or she may still qualify. Working with a social security disability lawyer will help you better understand these nuances.

· Resources must be considered. Your family’s income and resources will be a determining factor in receiving disability benefits for your child, whether your child is at home or away at school. SSI has benchmarks for income and resources; if your family’s total earnings exceed those benchmarks, then disability benefits will be denied. However, a social security disability lawyer can help you determine these specifications to ensure that your child receives the benefits that he or she deserves.

· Your child must have a physical or mental condition. The process of achieving disability benefits for your child is difficult. SSI requirements are lengthy, extremely specific, and there are legal ramifications for falsifying or misrepresenting information. To ensure that you get the disability benefits your child deserves, consult with a social security disability lawyer to discuss SSI rules about disabilities and your child’s situation.

Disability Benefits For Kids

benefits for childrenMost people who receive Social Security benefits also have dependents that count on them for living essentials. Obtaining benefits for children can be tricky and, often, requires additional documentation before benefits can be approved.

Protecting The Children

Social Security Disability Insurance for children seems counterintuitive in that to be eligible for disability benefits, one must have worked enough years to contribute taxes into the pool of funds. Since children under the age of 18 have likely not met this requirement, they must apply for benefits under the working status of a parent. Further, the child must be able to meet the conditions of being “disabled”,  meaning they are blind or hold a condition that prevents them from earning a living.

Children may also be able to receive help in the form of Supplemental Security Income benefits, but the qualification standards are different from disability insurance. The main determining factor for children to receive SSI benefits is that they have a physical or mental condition that severely limits their ability to earn a living, and be in financial need. Because SSI funds are not based on contributed taxes in a prior work history, they are reserved for only those with significant income and resource restrictions.



What about the Children?

childrens benefitsMany people who receive Supplemental Security Income often have dependents in their home to worry about. Considering how the disability benefits related to Supplemental Security Income are statistically lower than those that are associated with Social Security Disability Insurance, this presents a serious problem when it comes to the business of raising a family here. To put this in perspective, consider that the average recipient of Supplement Security Income only receives between 35 and 60% of their original wage.

The average for those who receive Supplemental Security Income is even lower: some individuals receive less than $1000 in assistance a month.

Benefits For Children

The sad answer to this is “no”. Supplement Security Income is only designed to attend to the needs of one person. If your child is also disabled, he or she may be eligible for Supplemental Security Income depending on if they are eligible for the program based off of the same criteria used to qualify adults.

In the event that you have minors and are receiving Supplement Security Income, be sure to speak with your local welfare office. They will be able to offer you opportunities for assistance when it comes to providing for minors. The wages that are paid by Supplement Security Income are often very low, so be sure to explore all of the avenues that you can to help you raise your children the best that you can. You can learn more about Supplemental Security Income at the Social Security Administration’s website at

Do Children Get A Free Ride?

One of the most prevalent rumors when it comes to the business of disability benefits for children (which tend to come in the form of Supplemental Security Income) is that it is easier for children to get disability payouts as opposed to adults.  This is categorically false – in fact, there is evidence that says children’s cases are often more difficult to win.

benefits for children

Why Is It Harder For Kids?

Much of the difficulty lies in the fact that kids have a better chance of seeing marked improvement in their medical conditions as opposed to adults.  The average amount of time it takes for children to be approved for disability is three years, and in this time a child’s body will change more physiologically than an adult’s ever will.  This means that during the application process, lots of children see their disabilities become much more mild or even disappear completely.

Another issue is that many children who are applying for Supplemental Security Income are doing so due to disorders like ADHD and learning disabilities, which can often be much more difficult to get through the court systems as compared to a physical medical malady.  For this reason, kids take a lot longer to get through the Supplemental Security Income process as compared to adults.  If you have a child who might be eligible for Supplemental Security Income, be sure to start the process as soon as possible!  The earlier you start, the better your chances are of receiving your benefits faster.  Don’t forget to have your child checked out regularly at the doctor – a strong medical history is the best way to ensure acceptance of disability claims at any age.


Dependents and Social Security Disability Insurance

dependents benefitsIf you are looking to get disability payments from the government, there are two main options: Social Security Disability Insurance and Supplemental Security Income.  There are several differences between these two programs regarding how is eligible and who is not, despite the fact that they are both maintained by the Social Security Administration and they both have the exact same application process.

Benefits for Children

One of the differences that is important to consider is the status of dependents in both the Social Security Disability Insurance program and the Supplemental Security Income program.  Where Social Security Disability Insurance is concerned, if you have paid in enough to the system before applying for disability insurance, you are eligible to receive additional Social Security Disability Insurance payouts for any dependents under the age of 18.  This is in stark contrast to Supplemental Security Income, where the only person who is eligible to receive benefits is the disabled person.

If you are applying for Social Security Disability Insurance, the logic goes that you have been a part of the workforce for long enough that you have earned the right to be “insured” – that is, enough of your tax dollars went toward Social Security that you now have the right to draw on those resources.  If you have been at the workforce long enough, your disability might make you eligible to get money to help you support your dependents, as well.  However, Supplemental Security Income is only for the disabled person, no matter how long he or she has been pulling benefit payments.


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