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Is My Child Eligible for SSI Benefits in Honea Path, SC

If your child was recently diagnosed with a severe illness or condition, you might be feeling overwhelmed by all that this diagnosis means for your child, your family and your finances. You want to ensure your child has a high quality of life, but with expenses piling up, it may seem impossible to afford all the treatments, aides and educational opportunities your child deserves. This is why the Social Security Administration (SSA) offers special benefits for disabled children in families with limited income and resources. These benefits, known as supplemental security income (SSI) benefits, can be life-changing for struggling families with disabled children. Keep reading to learn about the SSI eligibility requirements and find out how you can determine if your child is qualified to receive benefits.

Disability Criteria for Children

To be considered “disabled” in the eyes of the SSA, your child must be:

  • Under age 18, unmarried and not the head of a household (or up to 22 if still in school)
  • Medically declared blind OR
  • Diagnosed with a medical/psychological condition that leads to serious limitations, is considered chronic or could lead to death

There are many qualifying conditions that seriously limit a child’s ability to function, including low birth weight, down syndrome, deafness, severe asthma and other chronic respiratory conditions, HIV/AIDS, muscular dystrophy, diabetes, autism, cancer and a wide variety of other disorders affecting systems throughout the body. Many mental disorders are included as well, such as schizophrenia, depression, bipolar disorder, anxiety, trauma-related disorders, eating disorders and developmental disorders in infants and toddlers. 

Keep in mind that a condition must be considered extremely limiting for a child to be considered disabled. You will need to provide evidence, such as medical records, statements from doctors and other compelling documentation showing your child’s disability. The SSA provides a comprehensive impairment listing with detailed descriptions of how disability is determined for each condition.

Income Criteria for the Parents of Disabled Children

SSI benefits are available to families with limited income and resources. A disabled child will receive benefits based on their “deemed income,” which is calculated as a portion of the income the child’s parents bring home. This income consists of earned wages as well as unearned wages and government assistance (such as Social Security benefits, workers compensation and unemployment). Generally, the higher your household’s income, the lower your child’s SSI benefits will be. Some payments, such as income tax returns and food stamps, don’t count towards your overall income. The SSA provides a full breakdown of how income is calculated. The maximum income and resources a family can have in order to receive SSI is listed on the SSA’s website, and it changes annually.

Next Steps for Parents of Disabled Children

If you think your child is likely to be eligible for SSI benefits, your next step is to submit an application. On the SSA’s website, you can either complete your application online or request an appointment with an SSA representative who will help you get started. For more information on this process and what evidence of your child’s disability will be required, take a look at our overview page on child SSI disability. And if your claim is denied, you will want the help of a qualified disability attorney on your side. J. Robert Surface has helped many families get the SSI benefits they deserve, and he’s ready to help you, too.

Keep in mind that neither Mr. Surface, nor any other certified attorney, has the power to rush the VA ruling process or tip the scales in a client’s favor. With that said, Mr. Surface is well-versed in veterans disability law and can help you appeal your claim in the most effective way possible.

If you have questions or want to take advantage of a free case review, we are available 24/7 at (864) 235-0886. There is no guarantee you will win benefits if you apply. The office of J. Robert Surface, Attorney at Law is located at 513 E Greer St, Honea Path, SC 29654. He proudly serves clients from Greenville, Clemson, and Spartanburg.

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