For a family with a child who is born with a disability or becomes disabled, the need to secure proper care and financial assistance can be immense. The types of benefits available to families in these situations often change when a child turns 18 and becomes a legal adult. One benefit type that may be available to an adult disabled child that is not available to that person before they turn 18 is Social Security Disability based on a parent’s or even a grandparent’s work and contribution record. 

As explained by the Social Security Administration, SSDI benefits may be extended to one’s child over the age of 18 if the disability was incurred prior to the child turning 22 years old. An adult disabled child may be defined as a person’s biological child, adopted child or even a stepchild. Some grandparents may even be able to obtain these benefits for their biological or adopted grandchild or step-grandchild. 

The adult disabled relative may be allowed to work and earn some income so long as the amount of money earned does not exceed a certain threshold, however they do not need to work or have ever worked. The adult disabled person must also be disabled in the eyes of the SSA, just as would a person claiming SSDI benefits on their own work history. 

If you would like to learn more about how to secure the necessary financial assistance for an adult child or grandchild with a disability, please feel free to visit the SSDI for an adult child page of our Social Security Disability website.