If your son or daughter has been receiving Social Security Income (SSI) benefits for some time, then you’re probably accustomed to the Social Security Administration’s (SSA’s) periodic redetermination procedures.
Redeterminations or reevaluations of eligibility are required for most SSI recipients on a regular schedule. The SSA may look at your son or daughter’s medical condition every year or two to make sure he or she is still eligible for SSI. In some ways the redetermination at age 18 is the same and in some ways it is different.
Childhood vs. Adult Disability Evaluations
When the SSA looks at the medical conditions of children, they evaluate how impairments affect normal activities of childhood and how the disability impacts the everyday life of the child. When evaluating adults on the other hand, the SSA looks at how an impairment affects the ability to get and keep a job in which the person can maintain substantial gainful activity.
When your son or daughter turns 18, the SSA will reevaluate their medical condition under the adult disability determination processes. If they find your child’s impairment prevents gainful employment, then he or she will continue to receive disability benefits through the SSI program.
Adult SSI Benefits
When the SSA evaluates an adult’s eligibility for SSI, only the income and other financial resources of the individual are used to determine the amount of benefits paid each month. Up to the age of 18, the income and resources of a child’s parents are also factored in. This means that your child’s monthly SSI payments may actually increase when he or she transitions to adult SSI benefits after turning 18 years of age.