Can children apply and enter the Supplemental Security Income program run by the Social Security Administration?
Short answer: Yes.
If children meet the Social Security Administration’s qualifications for disabilities, children may be entitled to collect aid from the Supplemental Security Income program.
The process is similar to adults under the same program in my regards. You must prove that the child’s condition, whether it is a physical or mental disability or illness, is expected to last at least one year or ultimately result in the child’s death. You must also prove that the disability causes “marked and severe functional limitations.” And lastly, the child or the parents or guardians must fall under a certain financial income threshold to be eligible.
Four types of income for the child will be considered by the SSA, including earned income unearned income such as unemployment benefits or state disability payments, in-kind income such as food or shelter provided by charity and deemed income, which is a portion of the income from parents or guardians and others living in the household.
Once you apply, the SSA will seek information including details about the child’s disability. They may also seek information from the child’s doctors, therapists and others familiar with the child such as teachers. You will also need to provide your child’s birth certificate and proof of income from the parents, guardians and household members.
The process is involved and may seem intimidating. It may be wise to seek the advice and guidance of a law professional familiar with SSD benefits to determine whether a child qualifies and to properly proceed.
Source: findlaw.com, “Social Security Benefits for Disabled Children,” Accessed Sept. 20, 2015