Social Security Disability Benefits for Children of People with Disabilities

When you qualify for Social Security Disability benefits, your children may also qualify to receive benefits on your record. Your eligible child can be your biological child, adopted child or stepchild. A dependent grandchild may also qualify.

To receive benefits, the child must be unmarried; and

  • be under age 18

  • or, be 18-19 years old and a full-time student (no higher than grade 12)

  • or, be 18 or older and have a disability that started before age 22.

Normally, benefits stop when children reach age 18 unless they are disabled. However, if the child is still a full-time student at a secondary (or elementary) school at age 18, benefits will continue until the child graduates or until two months after the child becomes age 19, whichever is first.

Within your family, each qualified child may receive a monthly payment up to one-half of your full disability amount. However, there is a limit to the amount that the Social Security Administration can pay your family members. The total depends on your benefit amount and the number of family members who also qualify on your record. The total varies, but generally the total amount your family can receive is about 50 to 80 percent of your disability benefit.

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