Social Security Benefits for people with spina bifida

The following is a guest post/article written by Ram Meyyappan. This is a great introduction to the kinds of Social Security Benefits that are available to people with Spina Bifida.

Spina Bifida and Social Security Disability Benefits

If you suffer from spina bifida, you know how debilitating the disease can be. There is no cure for the condition. Only treatment. Children who are treated during infancy and childhood still have medical problems during their adult years. For example, mobility may be severely impaired. These problems with mobility can prevent an individual from performing gainful work activity. Fortunately, in some cases, Social Security Disability benefits may be able to help.

Applying for Social Security Disability Benefits for Spina Bifida

If you have spina bifida the lack of income can be financially devastating. There are two programs that can help alleviate the financial stress including SSDI and SSI. In order to qualify for either program, you need to prove to the Social Security Administration (SSA) that you are disabled according to their guidelines. Spina bifida is evaluated under Section 11.08 of the Social Security Blue Book. This covers any type of spinal cord and nerve root lesions and central nervous system vascular accidents. In order to qualify for benefits, you will need to provide the SSA with clinical records and medical evidence such as lab results, copies of imaging results, treatment histories, and written statements from treating physicians. If you are determined to be disabled by the SSA, you must still meet the criteria for each individual program in order to qualify for benefits.


In order to qualify for SSDI, you must have earned enough work credits through past work activity. As of 2013, for every $1,160 you earn you receive one work credit. You can earn a maximum of 4 work credits each year. If you are age 31 or older, you need 20 work credits to qualify for SSDI benefits. If you are under the age of 31, you need to have worked half of the years since turning 21. For example, if you are 29, you must have worked 4 of the 8 years since turning 21 in order to have earned enough work credits.


If you do not have enough work credits to qualify for SSDI, you may still be able to qualify for SSI benefits. The SSSI program is a needs-based program. You must meet certain financial criteria in order to qualify. As of 2013, you must earn no more than $710 as an individual or $1,060 as a couple. You must also not have more than $2,000 in assets as an individual or $3,000 in assets as an adult.

Qualifying for Disability Benefits for a Child

A child who suffers from spina bifida can also qualify for Social Security Disability benefits under Section 111.00ff of the Social Security Blue Book. You will need to provide the same medical evidence to prove the disability of a child. However, unlike an adult, a child cannot qualify for SSDI benefits. A child can only qualify for SSI benefits, and that is if the household income meets the SSI criteria.

Applying For Social Security Disability Benefits

You can apply for Social Security Disability benefits online or at your local Social Security office. When you go to fill out the disability application, you will be asked to fill out a number of different forms. It is crucial that you fill out each of these forms in their entirety and that you answer all questions with comprehensive, detailed answers. The more detailed your answers, the easier it will be for the SSA to understand how you qualify for Social Security Disability benefits.

Once you fill out a Social Security Disability application, it will take approximately three to six months to receive a determination regarding your application. If you are denied benefits, you have the right to appeal the SSA’s decision within 60 days of the date of the denial notice. If you do need to appeal a denial of benefits, you may want to consider retaining the services of a disability attorney to help you with your appeal.


Article by Ram Meyyappan
Social Security Disability Help

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