Disclaimer: The following information is helpful when an individual is turning 18. However, the following is provided for informational and educational purposes only and is not a substitute for legal or medical advice.
A person who is born with, or develops, special needs may require support for the rest of their life. Establishing a special needs or transition plan for the person, based on their family’s needs, can secure the person’s future. When the person is turning 18 years old, they are presumed by law to be capable of making their own decisions. Planning for the future can assist a special needs parent or guardian in deciding what level of support the person may need. Benefits such as SSISSI is a federal cash assistance program for those with limited income AND are either 65 years old or older or blind or disabled. Adult SSI beneficiaries must have limited income and resources ($2,000 in assets); parents’ income does not count for adult applicants. You do not have to have any work history. Monthly benefit payments are determined by the current benefit rate ($750 a month in 2018), minus any “countable income.” More
If enrolled on Medicaid under the age of 18 and receiving waiver services, the age limit for this type of Medicaid is 18 years old.
Medicaid will automatically be canceled unless there is:
-a disabilityThe Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) defines a person with a disability as a person who has a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activity. This includes people who have a record of such an impairment, even if they do not currently have a disability. It also includes people who do not have a disability but are regarded as having a disability. The ADA also makes it unlawful to discriminate against a person based on that person’s association with a person with a disability. More determination from your local Department of Social ServicesOne of the largest Commonwealth agencies, partnering with 120 local departments of social services to promote the well-being of children and families statewide and ensure that thousands of the most vulnerable citizens have access to the best services and benefits available to them. More (Medicaid Disability Determination)
-or the Social Security Administration.
What Should I Do?
File a SSI application on the child’s behalf the month after they turn 18 years old.
**If you would rather not apply for SSI benefits, contact the local Department of Social Services and request a determination from them.
SSI Application Process for Those Individuals Turning 18:
Visit the Social Security Administration website to complete the online disability application to start the process.
Then, schedule an appointment with a Social Security representative to complete the process.
To make an appointment, call 1-800- 772-1213 (TTY 1-800- 325-0778). You can call between 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., Monday through Friday or contact your local Social Security office.
Tip: please make this appointment a priority. Additionally, make sure to bring all relevant medical records to your appointment.
The SSA will not process your application unless you have set up a representative payee account so benefits can be deposited electronically.
Open a representative payee bank account before your appointment.
Bring the bank: name, address, routing number, and account number to your appointment
Or have your bank complete a direct deposit form that you can present at your appointment.
Note: If your child has any assets, bring current:
-copies of savings bonds
-and all proof of the current value of the assets.
If your child has assets but you do not bring proof of their value, the SSA will not process the application until you provide proof.
*Please Note* A Medicaid recipient can have “no more than $2,000 of assets in his or her name.”
If you have questions, please contact the Social Security Administration.