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Are you disabled with children, or have a disabled child? Worry over providing for your family can be overpowering, but there are programs in place to help! If you have limited income and a disabled child, they may qualify for SSI. If you receive disability from the Social Security Administration, your children may be eligible to receive dependent benefit payments too.

Is Your Child Eligible for SSI?

Supplemental Security Income is available to people who are aged, blind, or disabled and who live with limited financial resources. This includes children! In order for your child to qualify, they must meet the Social Security Administration’s definition of disabled through either a physical or mental condition (or combination of conditions). Genetic disorders and medical conditions that qualify include blindness, deafness, cerebral palsy, and Down syndrome, among many others. If your child is living with a medical condition that severely limits her everyday activities—and will affect her for at least 12 months (or result in her death)—she may have the opportunity to receive SSI benefit payments. For the low-income requirement, your child’s income must be less than $1170 per month in 2017; please note that a portion of the child’s income will be counted from the incomes of family members living with that child. 

Is Your Child Eligible for SSDI Dependent Benefits?

When an adult is disabled and receiving Social Security Disability Insurance benefit payments, their dependents may be eligible to receive payments as well. General guidelines state that your child—whether adopted or biological—must be under age 18 and unmarried. (Stepchildren and grandchildren may also qualify.) However, older children can also qualify if they’re either 19 and a full-time student still in high school or if they become disabled before the age of 22. 

Your child may be eligible to receive these SSDI benefits even if they’ve never worked because their benefits are based on your income earnings. Children may continue to receive these benefits even if their parent dies. Your child’s monthly benefit payment may be up to 50% of your own SSDI payment, but note that there’s a limit to how much your family may receive in total benefits each month—depending on the number of dependents receiving benefit payments, each of their payments may be reduced so the total payments don’t exceed your maximum family amount. 

Can Your Child Continue Receiving Disability After 18?

In most cases, your child’s benefits will end when they become an adult. There are a few exceptions - for example, as mentioned above, your child can continue to receive their SSDI dependent benefit payments through age 19 if they’re still in secondary school. 

If your child becomes disabled before the age of 22, they may continue receiving SSDI benefit payments based on your earnings record even as an adult, regardless of age. They can only continue receiving these benefit payments while they are unmarried.  

For your child to continue receiving SSI benefit payments after 18, they will be re-evaluated based on their own personal income and disabled status at that time. 

When you have a disabled child (or a disability yourself), it can be hard enough to take care of yourself and your family—without fighting with applications and forms to make sure your family receives benefit payments as well! Make sure you and your children get the full amount of SSI or SSDI benefits you may qualify for with the help of a seasoned attorney. As an experienced Social Security Disability Attorney, I, Harry Bernstein, have the expertise and familiarity to make your application process as painless as possible. 

Give your children their best chance at disability benefits and call my office at 216-600-0124 today.