The duties required of good parenting can be challenging under any circumstance. In the case of a child with a developmental or learning disability, a parent might quickly feel overwhelmed.
Fortunately, there are available programs to help parents with children that might require specialized instruction or services. In the context of public school education, the Individuals With Disabilities Education Act of 1975 mandates that schools must provide an education to disabled students that are comparable in quality to their non-disabled peers.
Yet a parent’s concerns may extend beyond the classroom. In the case of specialized therapies or treatments, a parent may feel that such services would be greatly beneficial, even if costly. For low-income households, however, such services might remain wishful thinking without assistance from the Supplemental Security Income program.
The Social Security Administration’s website contains information specifically answering questions about benefits for children with disabilities. As an attorney who focuses on disability benefits might caution, however, the rules for eligibility can be very complex.
Like Social Security disability insurance, SSI benefits use the same standard of disability. However, SSI recipients do not need a work history. Instead, they must qualify under certain low-income requirements. An applicant for SSI benefits must provide evidence of eligibility in both regards: disability and income. Even then, around two-thirds of initial applications might be denied. With those odds, it makes sense to have a disability attorney help you prepare the strongest application possible. An attorney can also provide continued advocacy throughout any appeals of denied applications.
Source: The New York Times, “Where to Turn When the School Wants to Have Your Child ‘Tested’,” Jessica Lahey, May 8, 2014