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Adult Children: Can They Access Disability Benefits?

Medical conditions can occur at any age and may have a significant impact on an individual's life. They can cause hindrances and limit a person’s ability to perform basic life functions. The Social Security Administration (SSA) understands the effects that disability can have on a person and has laws that apply to each age group. Whether you are an adult child or a senior citizen, you may be eligible for disability benefits. If you have sufficient medical evidence to prove your disability, you may qualify for financial assistance.

When it comes to seeking benefits, the SSA has specific eligibility criteria and guidelines that you need to follow. The SSA will consider your application only when you have met the established eligibility requirements. Adult children diagnosed with severe disabilities can apply for Social Security Disability insurance (SSDI) benefits or Supplemental Security Insurance (SSI) benefits. The eligibility for each type of benefit may depend on several factors.

Who satisfies the criteria of a disabled adult child?

As mentioned above, the SSA has certain eligibility conditions for people to qualify for disability benefits. According to the SSA, someone who meets the following criteria can be considered as a disabled adult child:

● Age 18 or older

● Unmarried

● Became disabled before age 22

● One of the individual’s parents receives benefits or meets the criteria for benefits or has a deceased parent with a qualifying work history

If the person meets the criteria for Social Security benefits for children, the SSA will evaluate their application further. If the applicant does not meet these conditions, they will likely receive a denial from the SSA.

The adult child must have a severe disability

In addition to the above conditions, the SSA will consider the individual’s application only when the adult child is diagnosed with a severe medical condition. They must be suffering from a physical or a mental illness that limits their abilities and reduces their quality of life. Applicants must have significant evidence to prove the following:

● The child is suffering from a medical condition that affects their ability to perform daily life tasks.

● The child has suffered from the condition for at least 12 months and it is expected to be long-lasting.

There are several ways that an adult child can become eligible for benefits. Below are the three ways to an applicant can approved for the financial assistance:

● By having a listed impairment from the Blue Book

When the individual’s condition is listed in the Blue Book, it can be easier to get approved. The adult must meet the eligibility criteria for that specific condition to get approved for the disability benefits. When the applicant meets all the eligibility criteria and has sufficient evidence of their condition, they will likely be approved.

● By equaling a listing impairment

One can apply via this method if the medical condition is not explicitly listed in the Blue Book. In that case, the SSA will consider a condition if it is of a similar severity as one that qualifies under a listing in the Blue Book.

● By applying for a medical-vocational allowance

If the condition is not listed in the Blue Book, an applicant may be able to qualify via a medical-vocational allowance. The functional capacity of the individual can be used to evaluate the level of work they can perform. The less work that they can perform, the higher the chances of getting approved for benefits.

What if the adult child gets married?

If the adult child gets married, they will not be able to receive this category of benefits. They can only receive this financial assistance if they marry another disabled child. One can consider consulting a legal professional or meeting with Social Security Office officials to learn more about the specifics that may apply to their unique situation. Marriage can affect your eligibility for disability benefits, so you should consult with a lawyer before making any decisions.

An adult child can receive disability benefits based on a parent’s earnings. One must note that an adult child can receive up to 50% of their parents' benefits.

An adult child can qualify for SSI

Florida SSI benefits may be available for people who need help covering expenses relating to food, medical, or housing costs if they have a disability. The program is funded by the federal government and administered by state governments.

When a family has income constraints and insufficient resources, they may consider applying for benefits under the Supplemental Security Income (SSI) program. Income limits are one of the main criteria for the eligibility of adult children. You must ensure that the child's resources do not exceed the specified limit. If it exceeds it, the SSA may deny the application.

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