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Are There Any Laws That Stipulate I Must File For Disabled Adult Child's Benefits If I Receive SSI?

Hi.

My mother has just filed for Social Security. I am living with her, and have been blind since birth. I have now been put on a mandatory child adult disability benefit. I was told if I did not apply, I would be no longer eligible for supplemental security income. Are there any laws that stipulate this in writing? Also, I cannot find anywhere on the Internet that says what the Sga earnings are for someone who is blind, and now is on child adult disability benefits. Thank you very much for your help.

Hi,

Yes, there is a requirement in the Social Security law that specifies that a person must file for other benefits for which they may be eligible if they file for or receive Supplemental Security Income (SSI). The specific section is 1611(e)(2), which can be found at the following link: https://www.ssa.gov/OP_Home/ssact/title16b/1611.htm#act-b1611-e-2. More detailed information on the requirement can be found in the following section of Social Security's operations manual: https://secure.ssa.gov/apps10/poms.nsf/lnx/0500510001.

The reason for this requirement is due to the fact that SSI is a needs based benefit that's intended as a last resort source of support for people who are disabled, blind, or age 65 or older. Therefore, a person can only qualify for SSI if they have applied for any other types of benefits, including Social Security, for which they may be eligible.

With regard to your other question, the substantial gainful activity (SGA) monthly earnings limit for 2020 for individuals who are statutorily blind is $2,110 (https://www.ssa.gov/oact/cola/sga.html#:~:text=Amounts%20for%202020,amou....) That limit applies to statutorily blind individuals who receive any type of Social Security disability benefits, including disabled adult child's benefits.

Best, Jerry

Posted: 
Jul 12 2020 - 9:58am
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