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Social Security and Children

Posted on:5/8/2012
When the Social Security Act was passed in 1935, it provided federal grants to the states for dependent children but required the states to adopt the philosophy of this more advanced method of caring for dependent children. The residence requirements for aid to dependent children give the states less latitude than do the residence requirements for old-age assistance.


Within the U.S. Social Security Administration, the Supplemental Security Income (SSI) program provides funds for people at any age who have severe disabilities and meet requirements for limited income. Most states have a disability determination service that reviews decisions on each child made by a disability examiner and a medical or psychological specialist.

This team develops a care record of each child applicant's medical and functional history from a wide variety of sources including parents, caregivers, school staff, and other practitioners as needed. The team uses a sequential evaluation process in which it considers in turn whether the child is not able to engage in gainful activity (generally defined as not earning more than $500 per month), whether the child has a severe impairment, and whether the child's impairment meets an official listing of impairments, or, if not, whether the impairment is comparable in severity to that which would disable an adult. The childhood mental disorders in which a child might qualify for SSI were first listed in the Federal Register in 1990.

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What is Social Security Disability? SSDI SSI
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