Can My Disabled Child Receive Benefits as an Adult?

Post by: Eric Jones | Posted Date: December 20th, 2016 |

Aging out of programs that provide assistance and financial support to disabled children can create many problems. Fortunately, preplanning can ensure that a child living in Ohio continues receiving disability benefits through Social Security once he or she turns 18.

The rules and conditions for keeping an adult child eligible for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) are relatively straightforward. Still, working with a caring Ohio disability benefits attorney to make sure all the paperwork and interviews are completed correctly and in a timely manner can prevent any lapses in benefits.

Before reading through the following quick summary of how to keep disabled benefits for adult children, recognize that such benefits come primarily from the federal government. Ohio Medicaid does the most at the state level to deliver health care to disabled individuals of all ages. Numerous private programs also exist at the state and local levels to protect disabled people from suffering undue hardships. A knowledgeable and experienced Ohio disabled benefits lawyers can offer referrals to such sources of assistance, but legal advice and representation will focus almost exclusively on clearing hurdles to receiving Social Security benefits.

Making Social Security Contributions Is Mandatory for SSDI/SSI Eligibility

If neither a disabled child’s parents nor the disabled individual ever pays into Social Security, then the child cannot receive federal disability benefits. A portion of the paycheck deductions tagged as “F.I.C.A.” goes toward Social Security. If a parent only makes retirement and disability contributions to another program like the Ohio Public Employees Retirement System (OPERS), no SSDI or SSI application will be approved. Assigning OPERS benefits to a dependent child is complicated, so consulting with a disability attorney in such a circumstance is strongly recommended.

A Disabled Child Generally Becomes an Adult at Age 18

Until a child turns 18, he or she receives SSDI benefits that are generally equal to 50 percent of what one of his or her parents would receive. A family with combined financial resources of $2,000 and limited income may also qualify for SSI.

Child disability benefits from Social Security end at 18 unless the child remains enrolled in school full time. Students in extended high school programs or college courses can continue receiving SSDI and/or SSI payments until they turn 19 or 22, depending on their specific circumstances.

Childhood Benefits Do Not Transition Automatically to Adult Benefits

Parents should check with Social Security while their disabled child is 17 to determine whether a new application for adult disability benefits must be filed. The agency does not automatically declare all disabled children to be disabled adults. The basic criteria for qualifying for SSDI as an adult amount to suffering from a physical, intellectual, or emotional condition that makes working at a job that pays enough to cover basic living expenses impossible.

Adults Who Become Disabled Between the Ages of 18 and 22 Can Be Considered Children

A parent’s SSDI benefits can convey to a young adult if the person becomes disabled before turning 22 and if the disabled person never paid into Social Security. If the disabled young adult did make Social Security contributions, he or she will have eligibility of their own.

Contact the Jones Law Group to discuss securing benefits for a disabled adult child by calling (614) 545-9998 or by completing this appointment-scheduling form.

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