Abromson & Carey, Attorneys at Law
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Supplemental Security Income for children with disabilities

New Jersey parents would agree that when a child is disabled due to an injury or illness, parents experience tough emotional and financial times. They often search for the best medical treatment possible for the child without regard for cost. Although at many times children recover, some children are not as fortunate. Those parents either deal with the loss of a child or the entire family learns to live with the various limitations of the disability.

Such families should know that they can file for Supplemental Security Income on behalf of their disabled children that under the age of 18 years. These families should note, however, that a child's benefits will stop after reaching the age of 18 years except when that child is still a student at a high school or elementary school. In that case too, the benefits stop once the child reaches the age of 19 years.

If a child needs to receive disability benefits after the age of 18 on his or her parents' records, that child must fulfill two additional eligibility criteria. First, the child's disability must have developed before the age of 22 years and second, the child must still meet the eligibility criteria set for adults in order to receive benefits. A disabled child -- over the age of 18 -- can also receive benefits if a parent starts receiving retirements or disability benefits.

To obtain this supplemental security income, parents need to file an application with the Social Security Administration and a report that details the child's disability. The website of the Social Security Administration provides details on how to proceed with the application. However, a layman may find it a challenge to understand all the rules and regulations. Therefore, people may wish to speak with an attorney, who can guide parents through the application process and help in case of denials and appeals.

Source: Social Security Administration, "Disability Planner: Benefits for a Disabled Child," Accessed on Oct. 24, 2014

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