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Obtaining SSI benefits for children

Disabilities do not just plague adults. In fact, many children in New Jersey and elsewhere are disabled due to conditions they were born with or because of an injury or illness suffered during their lives. No matter the cause or type of disability suffered by a child, if a disability is impacting a child's life tremendously, he or she could qualify for Supplemental Security income. In the right circumstances, other benefits could be available as well.

When seeking SSI for children, the requirements are rather similar to adults seeking this same benefit. SSI is designed to provide qualifying applicants with monthly payments. In order to qualify for these payments, an applicant must have a low income and limited resources. He or she must also be 65-years-old or older, blind or disabled.

With regards to a child, he or she must have a physical or mental condition that meets the SSA's criteria for determining whether a child is disabled. More specifically, a child must have a physical or mental condition that results in marked and severe functional limitations.

Additionally, the child must be of limited means, both with respect to family income and available assets. This limit varies from state to state, but the calculation ultimately depends on the wealth and income of the adult relatives living with the child. The child's qualification is based on their family's income and resources because it is likely that he or she is too young to work and provide for him or herself.

In addition to the requirements mentioned above, the child must not be working or otherwise bringing in more income than $1,170 a month. Furthermore, the child's condition must have been disabling, be expected to be disabling for 12 months or be expected to result in death.

When a New Jersey child is suffering from a disabling condition, the child and their family will seek out any measures necessary to better the child's situation. Obtaining SSD benefits is often necessary in this respect, and parents should make it paramount to determine which programs their child might qualify for.

Source: Social Security Administration, "Benefits For Children With Disabilities," accessed March 26, 2017

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