In the case of disability, it’s worth noting that the Social Security Administration (SSA) runs two national programs that give monthly income and health insurance to persons who are unable to work. These programs are the Social Security Disability Insurance Benefits (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI). In these two programs, children under the age of 18 can apply for disability and the social security administration is the body tasked with the steps in which this can be done.
In the case of a child, the Social Security Administration defines a disability as:
- The child must have a physical or mental condition(s) that very seriously limits his or her activities; and
- The condition(s) must have lasted, or be expected to last, at least 1 year or result in death. A state agency makes the disability decision. They review the information you give us. They will also ask for information from medical and school sources and other people familiar with the child’s condition(s).
This article is centered on the state of Louisiana and how to apply for child disability in the state. I will walk you through the steps on how this can be achieved and how to do it right.
Firstly, a child can be eligible for disability through the records of his parents. In this instant, its parents’ social security can suffice. The child’s disability entitlement is certain when the following conditions are met;
- An application for child ‘s insurance benefits is filed;
- The child is (or was) dependent upon the parent;
- The child is not married;
- The child meets any of the following conditions:
- Is under age 18;
- Is age 18-19 and a full-time elementary or secondary school student; or,
- Is age 18 or older and under a disability (which must have begun before age 22); and,
- The parent meets any of the following conditions:
- Is entitled to disability insurance benefits;
- Is entitled to retirement insurance benefits; or,
- Died and was either fully or currently insured at the time of death.
Secondly, a child is also entitled to disability through its grandparents, if the following conditions are met;
- Child must live with grandparent at least six months before the grandparent is eligible for benefits and be a dependent of the grandparents;
- Grandparent must be the caregiver;
- Grandparent must be eligible for social security benefits; and,
- Parents must be deceased or disabled.
In Louisiana, the most common way that children with disabilities receive Social Security benefits is through Supplemental Security Income or SSI. You can apply for SSI payments or Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits for your child by calling Social Security toll-free at 1-800- 772-1213 or by visiting your local Social Security office or online at https://www.ssa.gov/. No matter which way you apply for a child in your kinship care, you will have to make an appointment at the Social Security office. Social Security will help you determine whether or not you should apply for SSI or SSDI.1
Furthermore, there are some basic requirements and documents which you must take with you and present at the office. These documents vary depending on the benefit which you are applying for. If you are seeking SSI benefits for the child, you must have his or her Social Security number and birth certificate on hand. If you are filing for SSDI benefits for your child based on your own earnings record, please bring your own Social Security number or the Social Security number of the retired, disabled, or deceased parent whose earnings record the SSDI claim is based.
Also, go along with the medical and educational information of the child. It is imperative that there is a level of honesty when discussing the medical history of the child. Make a list of the hospitals and doctors the child has visited, also come along with the child’s appointment dates and medical records.
Furthermore, as regards the child’s educational record, the SSA will request that you explain how the child’s impairment impacts his or her ability to do daily tasks. They will also request the names of educators, special education or intervention providers, daycare providers, and family members who can offer information regarding the child’s functioning. You should bring your academic records to the appointment if you have them.
If you need help with applying for a disability for a child or have questions, don’t hesitate to get the help of a New Orleans disability attorney today. Having an attorney on your side greatly improves your chances of being approved, or being successful in appealing a previous denial.
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