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SSI and SSD for Children and Young Adults

Planning for the needs of disabled children is one of our specialties.

SSI for Children

The rules governing SSI for children are different than the rules that apply to adults. The SSA defines childhood disability narrowly:  1) The child must have one or more physical or mental conditions that very seriously limit his or her activities; and 2) The condition(s) must have lasted, or be expected to last, at least one year or result in death.

The SSA also considers the parents’ income and resources when making a decision. Therefore, even if your child has a serious disability as defined above, the parents’ earnings must still be low enough to qualify the child for this benefit.


SSI and SSD for Young Adults

Young adults who cannot work full-time due to medical impairments can also qualify for SSI or DIB. These benefits empower the young person to live more independently while also enabling parents to plan for their changing roles later in life. In certain circumstances, such as with a disabled adult child (see Childhood Disability Benefits below), the young adult can draw on a parent’s earnings record.


Childhood Disability Benefits
(formerly called Disabled Adult Child benefits)

Adults who have been disabled (according to the Social Security Administration’s rules) since before their 22nd birthday may be eligible for benefits based on their parents’ Social Security record. The parent must have worked enough to qualify for a Social Security benefit and have become disabled, retired, or died. If the adult child has worked at Substantial Gainful Activity (SGA) level since age 22, s/he will not be eligible for this benefit.

Find out about our Special Needs Planning services.