When you think of disability, you may picture a disabled adult in a wheelchair or an adult who struggles with a severe mental illness. However, if you have a child who is disabled, your child may be eligible for Social Security Disability benefits. Social Security offers Supplemental Security Income which is designed to help you provide care to a disabled child.
To qualify for SSI, you must show that your child’s condition is one that will last longer than 12 months, that it severely limits the child’s ability to engage in activities, and that the condition is based on mental and physical issues. Social Security has a list of health conditions that are specifically focused on children such as cerebral palsy, non-mosaic Down syndrome, low birth weight, and skin disorders.
You will need to submit documentation to back up your child’s claim for disability. The documentation requirements may include doctors’ examinations, medical test results, school records and statements that focus on the child’s limitations and quality of life. Social Security will also ask for access to the professionals who work with your disabled child such as therapists, doctors, teachers, tutors and psychologists.
Your income is also considered in the eligibility process as well as resources available. If your child is in a medical facility, the highest monthly SSI payment you can receive is $30. If your child attends a special school where she or he is separated from the family for several months, that factor is also used in the calculation of how much you will receive. Furthermore, if your child is older and works, the child cannot earn more than the stated amount from Social Security. In 2015, the monthly limit is $1,090.