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January is Birth Defect Prevention Month -- What Different Birth Defects Qualify for Social Security Disability?

When most people think about Social Security Disability benefits they imagine disabled workers who are no longer able to earn an income and are in need of benefits from the Social Security Administration in order to make ends meet. Many people forget that children may qualify for Social Security Disability benefits as well. When a child is born with a severe birth defect, the needs of the child can take a severe financial toll on that child’s family. In order to help alleviate the financial stress, the Social Security Administration provides benefit payments to some of the families who face such a situation.

Many of the parents of children who are born with birth defects wonder exactly which birth defects qualify a child for benefits from the Social Security Administration. Whether or not a child qualifies depends on a number of factors including the parent’s work history (and if enough work credits have been earned for SSDI benefits) and the family’s assets and income (for SSI payments).

There is no “cut and dry” answer to which birth defects will qualify a child for disability payments from the Social Security Administration. While there are some birth defects that are listed in the SSA’s “Blue Book” of disabling conditions, children who have birth defects that are not listed in this book may qualify for benefits if you can prove through objective medical evidence that the condition is severe enough to warrant benefits from the Social Security Administration.

Some of the birth defects that are included in the SSA Blue Book include fetal alcohol syndrome, autism, respiratory disorders, heart defects, growth impairments, special senses and speech, digestive system disorders, genitourinary impairments, hematological disorders, skin disorders, endocrine disorders, multiple body system disorders and neurological disorders.

The best way to determine whether or not your child suffers from a disability that would qualify for Social Security Disability is to consult with a qualified Social Security attorney. These professionals understand which disorders are considered to be disabling conditions by the Social Security Administration and will be able to determine whether or not you have a valid Social Security Disability claim. If the attorney you meet with determines that you do have a valid claim based on your child’s birth defect, he or she can help you gather the medical evidence that will be necessary to prove your case to the Social Security Administration and will help you fill out the application claim forms properly. This will ensure that your child’s application for benefits is presented to the SSA in the best light possible.

Fortunately, these attorneys will not require any up-front, out-of-pocket fees. The fees these professionals receive are taken from the back pay that your child is awarded by the Social Security Administration. If you do not win your child’s disability case, the attorney working on the case does not collect a fee. As such, it is always a good idea to consult with a Social Security Disability lawyer prior to filing for Social Security Disability benefits.