Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) is a benefits program that is based on work-history and thus provides income to a disabled person in an amount determined by wages earned over his working life. Supplemental Security Income (SSI) is another disability benefits program that is means tested and intended for lower income individuals. SSI pays out a maximum benefit of $721 per month, while people receiving SSDI may have higher benefits.
Unfortunately, a person who is born severely disabled is likely not ever going to be able to do work that would allow him to earn a higher benefit amount through SSDI. This does not necessarily mean, however, that every disabled child will only be able to receive Supplemental Security Income over the course of his life. The Social Security Administration (SSA) makes Adult Children benefits available under certain circumstances.
To determine if your child qualifies for Adult Children benefits or for help getting disability income for your child, contact an experienced SSDI attorney in Boston.
Eligibility for Adult Child Benefits
A person can become eligible for adult child benefits if the child met the SSA’s definition of disabled prior to his 22nd birthday. The SSA has a very narrow definition of disabled, and a child’s condition must be in a Blue Book Listing of Impairments or medically equivalent to a listed condition. The child must also exhibit the requisite symptoms that the SSA says need to accompany that condition.
If a child was already receiving disability benefits prior to turning 22, then he most likely meets the criteria and will be eligible for adult child benefits. However, the SSA has a different listing of benefits for children and adults. Childhood conditions are listed on Part B of the Listing of Impairments and adult conditions are listed on Part A. To determine if your child can qualify for benefits for Adult Children, you will need to make sure he or has a condition and required symptoms that appear on both lists.
If the child was disabled before his 22nd birthday and continues to meet the definition of disabled as an adult, the Adult Children benefits make it possible for him to obtain disability income on the basis of his parent’s work record. Essentially, because the child was not ever given the opportunity to have a job and earn a living due to his illness or medical condition, the SSA will count his mother or father’s work history in making him eligible for SSDI benefits.
A disabled person who qualifies for Adult Child benefits can receive significantly more money over the course of his lifetime collecting disability benefits than he would if he had to go on his own work history alone or if he was restricted to SSI benefits based on a lack of work credits. Parents should explore this option, and an attorney can help to both determine if your child qualifies and to apply for SSDI income.
If you are considering filing for SSDI in Boston, call for a free and confidential appointment at (617) 777-7777.
More Blog Entries:
Disability Awareness Efforts a Reminder of Importance of Providing for Disabled, Feb. 20, 2014, Boston SSDI, Attorney Blog