When the Wee Ones Need a Hand: Social Security Disability for Children

Little girl holding a stuffed animal

Disabled children in Chicago whose parents meet certain income requirements may qualify for assistance through the supplemental security income program with the Social Security Administration. In order to be eligible, children must have a qualifying condition, and their parents must have incomes below the limits that the agency has established for their family sizes.SSI may provide a monthly benefit amount to help the parents to provide for the special needs of his or her child. In most cases, children who are approved for SSI will also be approved for Medicaid.

Qualifying conditions

Children who apply for SSI must first have a qualifying condition. Conditions that qualify include blindness or another disability. Qualifying disabilities are those that can be determined by a doctor. They may include mental or physical impairments that substantially limit the child’s ability to function and that are expected to last for at least 12 months or longer. There are no minimum age requirements. Qualifying children may be approved at birth, and they may continue to receive benefits through the SSI for disabled children program until they reach the age of 18. A social security lawyer in Chicago may be familiar with the conditions that will likely qualify.

Income limits

The Social Security Administration posts updated income limits every year based on the size of a disabled child’s family. The agency will deem a portion of the parent’s income as being available to the disabled child if the parent is not also receiving SSI, SSDI, or TANF benefits. In addition to the child’s parent, the agency will consider a stepparent’s income if the stepparent also lives in the household and provides income to support the child.

Deeming income to the child continues until the child reaches age 18, no longer lives with his or her parents or gets married. When a child turns 18, he or she may then submit an application to receive benefits on his or her own through the Social Security Administration.

The Social Security Administration tries to work quickly to approve disabled children who meet the eligibility guidelines. A social security lawyer in Chicago may advise his or her clients about whether their income falls within the guidelines as well as whether or not their child’s disability might qualify under the program. SSI for children can help to provide additional assistance to families who have children with special needs.