How parent’s income effects children’s Supplemental Security Income (SSI) disability benefits

denied children's SSI benefits?

If you have a child or grandchild with a disability, you may be thinking about applying for Social Security disability benefits for the child. The most common type of children’s disability benefits is Supplemental Security Income (SSI).

However, proving disability in only half of a SSI case. All SSI cases have two parts:

  1. The individual (adult or child) has to be medically disabled (this includes psychological disabilities).
  2. The individual has to be financially eligible to receive SSI benefits.

It is quite possible for Social Security to decide that a person is disabled, but then deny that individual on financial grounds. See my article about financial eligibility in adult SSI cases.

Children’s SSI cases can be even tougher.  In adult SSI cases, Social Security considers the individual’s and their spouse’s income. In children’s SSI cases, Social Security considers then entire household income in deciding financial eligibility. The household finances test continues until the child turn 18. On the child’s 18th birthday, Social Security only considers the child’s income (which in many cases is zero).  However, once the child turns 18, he or she is considered an adult and evaluated under the adult standard of disability.

What often happens is the parents’ income makes the child financially ineligible for children’s SSI benefits. If this happens to you, there are a couple of limited options.

  • Look into the possibility of DAC benefits.
  • Reapply once the child turns 18 or if the household income decreases.

Has your child been financially denied children’s SSI benefits? How did you handle it? Tell me in the comments.

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Disclaimer: This is NOT legal advice. This site provides general information about Social Security disability cases in Colorado. To discuss your particular circumstances, please contact a lawyer in your area. Please review the full disclaimer .

About Tomasz Stasiuk

Tomasz Stasiuk is a Colorado Springs Social Security disability lawyer and the founding attorney of the Stasiuk Firm - a law firm specializing in Social Security disability cases in Colorado. Follow Tomasz Stasiuk on Google and Twitter
  • T ray

    I think this is wrong. My son is 4 and has cerebral palsey. I make 13.15 per hour and was denied ssi for my son due to my income. He requires special care and 3 therapy appointments weekly. I am a single mom who doesn't get any form of welfare and pay for all of my expenses out of pocket. I have regular bills such as rent and utilities which most of my income goes to. I cant believe that this can happen in america. I am a hard working citizen and pay for the system yet my son is denied help because 13.15 is too much money!! That is ridiculous.

  • patina

    this is a wierd sistiuation for me! lol…..my fiance is mentaly disabled….I have ptsd and psychosis and I am menatally disabled…now hopefull if I am right I will not have to put my kid on disablity because he also has learning disabilities and extreme adhd. I had my mother taking care of him while I got my life in order…I get him back in three months. I'm worried we will not make enough money and my benfits will not increase enough to better care for him. I reasearched a bit but can't find proper information on how it works. Do I have to put my son on disability? my fiance has a job he can handle right now….but when jj comes into the picture I can't have a job and can only focus on his care. I have other services set up to help me with his care. But I want not only to afford food for him but clothes as well….and with how much I make we would all be in a very bad situation. does any one know if my benfits will go up, and would it be wise to put my son on disabilty? he has a lot of problems, but if my disability goes up then we might be ok. please advice to anyone who reads this!
    love much,
    Patina Rose

  • patina

    that is so screwed up that they can not help you….keep pushing… get your son a case manager or a fianacial manager….thats what I am going to do for my son..and I know how because I am disabled as well….I am sorry they will not help you….but keep pushing…..keep note of all things that effect him from birth to now… and if it is getting worse track that too….but a case manager for him or a fianancail manager can help you do that kind of stuff. mine did for me, and now I am working towards his care. Good luck to you, take care!
    love much,
    Patina

  • patina

    this is a wierd sistiuation for me! lol…..my fiance is mentaly disabled….I have ptsd and psychosis and I am menatally disabled…now hopefull if I am right I will not have to put my kid on disablity because he also has learning disabilities and extreme adhd. I had my mother taking care of him while I got my life in order…I get him back in three months. I'm worried we will not make enough money and my benfits will not increase enough to better care for him. I reasearched a bit but can't find proper information on how it works. Do I have to put my son on disability? my fiance has a job he can handle right now….but when jj comes into the picture I can't have a job and can only focus on his care. I have other services set up to help me with his care. But I want not only to afford food for him but clothes as well….and with how much I make we would all be in a very bad situation. does any one know if my benfits will go up, and would it be wise to put my son on disabilty? he has a lot of problems, but if my disability goes up then we might be ok. please advice to anyone who reads this!
    love much,
    Patina Rose

  • patina

    that is so screwed up that they can not help you….keep pushing… get your son a case manager or a fianacial manager….thats what I am going to do for my son..and I know how because I am disabled as well….I am sorry they will not help you….but keep pushing…..keep note of all things that effect him from birth to now… and if it is getting worse track that too….but a case manager for him or a fianancail manager can help you do that kind of stuff. mine did for me, and now I am working towards his care. Good luck to you, take care!
    love much,
    Patina

  • august82

    They always deny you the first time to see if you'll give up so if you didn't appeal it I would try again and if they deny you appeal it, I have seen it take as long as a year for them to finally approve it….

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