Child in wheelchair

How Do I Get SSI Benefits for My Child?

If your child has a disability that restricts them significantly and your household has limited income, you may be able to apply for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits on behalf of your child. SSI benefits can provide additional income that can help with supporting the disabled child and your family. In order to qualify for SSI benefits, your child’s disability must be expected to last more than 1 year or result in death.

The Social Security Administration (SSA) defines a child as someone who is unmarried, not the head of household, and is under the age of 18. Dependents under the age of 22 who are still regularly attending school can also be defined as children, as long as they are unmarried and not the head of household.

Before applying for SSI for your child, you will first need to review whether your household qualifies for the benefit. The SSA sets income limits for qualifying that are based on a variety of factors, including how many children you have, the number of parents in the household, and whether your income is earned from a job or received from the government. The SSA has a helpful chart that breaks down the income requirements.

There are several situations where these income requirements may be different, such as when your household receives both earned and unearned income or the child earns their own income. If you fall under one of those situations, you can call the SSA office to see if your child still qualifies for benefits.

Once you have determined if your household qualifies, you can fill out the Child Disability Report on the Social Security Administration’s website. The report asks for information about your child’s disability, how it affects them, and information about your child’s doctors, who the SSA will contact to verify the information you submitted.

Once you have submitted this report, the SSA will call you within 3-5 business days to review the report you submitted and discuss next steps. At this point, you may start the SSI application process if your family does qualify. The SSA will give you instructions about how to finish applying for SSI.

After you apply, you will either be denied or approved to receive SSI benefits. If you are denied SSI benefits even after it is determined that you income qualify for them, reach out to us to schedule a free consultation. We understand how frustrating it can be to be denied benefits when you are relying on them to support your family and we want to help. Having an experienced Social Security attorney on your side can help your case and increase the odds of success when you appeal the decision.

If you would like to schedule a free consultation to discuss your rights, we can be reached at 805-214-8888 or through our Contact Us form.