Social Security Disability Benefits for Autism

Autism is a developmental disorder that’s usually diagnosed in the early stages of development. According to Autism Speaks, “Autism can be associated with intellectual disability, difficulties in motor coordination and attention, and physical health issues such as sleep and gastrointestinal issues.”

Due to the severity of autism, the Social Security Administration (SSA) has placed it on its impairment list and individuals who suffer from this disorder may be able to receive Social Security disability benefits.

Do Autistic Children Qualify for Disability Benefits?

When it comes to applying for benefits, children and adults without a work history may qualify for Supplemental Security Income (SSI). For autistic children, there’s a certain level of severity that must be met in order to receive SSI. According to Section 12.10 in the SSA’s Blue Book, children must meet the requirements specified in both section A and B below.

1. Medically document findings of the following:

For autistic disorder, all of the following:

  • Qualitative deficits in verbal
  • Non-verbal communication and in imaginative activity
  • Markedly restricted repertoire of activities and interests

2. Must result in at least two of the following:

  • Marked restriction of activities of daily living
  • Serious difficulties in maintaining social functioning
  • Marked difficulties in maintaining concentration, persistence or pace
  • Repeated episodes of decompensation, each of extended duration

If your child can meet all qualifications listed above, then you may potentially get SSI benefits for your child.

Does Adult Autism Qualify for Disability Benefits?

If you’re an adult who has a work history and suffers from autism you may be eligible to receive Social Security disability benefits. For adulthood autism, you must be able to provide evidence that your condition prevents you from holding gainful employment and affects your work ability. From there, the SSA will look over your application and determine if you meet the criteria for disability benefits.

If you suffer from autism in adulthood, consulting with an experienced Social Security attorney or advocate may be beneficial for your claim. Disability attorneys and advocates handle cases like yours on a daily basis and can provide you with personalized support. Click on the button below for a free benefits evaluation!

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Megan Kelly is a former blogger and copywriter for LeadingResponse.