Campaign: Social Security

SSA's Age 18 Redetermination

When a youth has received Social Security benefits as a child they will receive notice on or around their 18th birthday to go through redetermination where they must meet the SSA's adult definition of a disability. To continue with benefits they must prove to SSA that they have a disabling condition that prevents them from earning Substantial Gainful Activity (SGA) and that disabling condition is expected to last a minimum of 12 months or result in death. This sends the wrong message to transition age youth and their families. It is during this period of time that students should be focusing on transitioning from school to a job - from 18-21 if the student has an IEP and is still in school they should be working and being supported academically by their school. To prove that they can't work to get benefits from SSA and then prepare to work does not promote successful transition.

 

If students are still in school and working towards successful transition then the redetermination should be held once they graduate from school or are no longer participating in their IEP. We can not expect our youth to transition to the world of work if we make them prove they can't work to get benefits.

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Idea No. 120