In some cases, children can be entitled to SSI Child Disability benefits. Should your child qualify and be awarded SSI benefits, then you must set up a separate bank account that is in both your name and your child’s name. SSI back pay is only to be used for things for your child. Let’s talk about more on how you can find out whether your child may be entitled to SSI Child Disability benefits or not.
Is Your Child Entitled to SSI Child Disability Benefits?
The SSA will ask a number of questions to determine whether your child is entitled to SSI child disability benefits. First, it will need to be determined whether your child is engaging in substantially gainful activity. In 2021, this would mean that your child was earning $1,310 or more per month. If this is the case, your child would not be declared disabled and, therefore, would be unable to receive SSI Child Disability benefits.
The SSA will also need to know whether your child has a medically determinable mental or physical impairment or some combination of impairments. Furthermore, the SSA will need to determine whether your child’s mental or physical condition meets or would be considered medically equal to the requirements outlined in the Child Medical Listing of Impairments. Due to the fact that medical listings can be very technical, even more so for children sometimes, a child case may be reviewed by medical experts.
Should your child have a mental or physical impairment that does not meet or equal a medical listing of impairments, there may still be a chance that he or she will qualify for benefits. An adjudicator or Administrative Law Judge will make a determination as to whether the functional limitations created by your child’s mental or physical impairments are the same as those of any of the child medical listings. If this is so, it will be determined that your child’s impairments are functional equivalents to a qualifying listing. In other words, should the combined effects of your child’s impairments be the functional equivalent to a listed qualifying condition, then this could be used to determine that your child is disabled and would qualify for benefits.
To determine whether your child’s impairments are functional equivalents to a child medical listing, then the adjudicator or Administrative Law Judge will look to see whether the physical or mental impairments of your child yield two marked limitations or one extreme limitation among the following areas:
- Acquiring and using information
- Attending and completing tasks
- Caring for yourself
- Health and physical well-being
- Interacting with and relating to others
- Moving and manipulating objects
In order to develop a strong case that your child’s impairments are functional equivalents to a qualifying child medical listing, evidence must be gathered to support this assertion. There are a variety of evidence types that may be used for this, including:
- Teacher observations noted in questionnaires
- Notes from after school tutors or daycare providers
- Individual Education Programs (IEPs)
- Behavioral modification plans
- Section 504 plans from schools
- Findings by treating medical and mental health professionals
- Testimony from your child
- Testimony from you as the child’s parent
Arizona Social Security Disability Attorney