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Importance of Work before Age 18

  • Creates an expectation of working

  • Encourages independence

  • Establishes Network for future jobs

  • Qualifies them for an SSDI benefit which could make them eligible to use a Plan for Achieving Self-Support (PASS). A PASS could help them receive extra money to use to reach their employment goals.

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Definition of disability under age 18:

  • Student’s development; how do they learn in comparison to their peers?

  • Household income or resources may exclude a student from receiving SSI.

  • Redetermination will occur automatically at age 18.

  • Students have an expectation of continued benefits.

  • Parental fear of loss of benefit due to work activity; they do not have knowledge of

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Student Earned Income Exclusion

  • Must be under 22 regularly attending school

  • College -8 hrs a week

  • Grades 7/12-12 hrs a week

  • Training Course-12 hrs a week

  • Home study due to disability can also be considered

  • Allows student to exclude $1,900 per month/maximum of $7,670 per year and their SSI is not reduced in 2020

  • Student’s expectation of post high school training. Students will graduate with same age peers but have few opportunities for continued training and education.

  • Student’s lack of understanding related to necessary accommodations post high school.

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Age 18 Redetermination:

  • Automatically occurs at some point before their 19th birthday

  • Parents have the expectation that benefits will continue.

  • Approximately 600 students in Iowa that receive SSI, turn 18 each year and go through Social Security’s age 18 redetermination. About 67% of these students do not meet the criteria for SSI as an adult and their benefits will end. Section 301 allows a student who does not meet the adult criteria for benefits, to continue to receive those benefits if they are involved in and have a written employment plan.

About Section 301

Section 301 - Continued payment under a VR or similar program

  • Allows for the continuation of benefits while the beneficiary completes an appropriate Vocational Rehab program or similar services.

  • Been determined by SSA to be medically recovered or to no longer meet the medical qualification through a medical CDR or age 18 re-determination

Facts about Section 301

  • Only offers extended benefits to those that would have terminated due to medical recovery

  • Allows continued payment to any auxiliaries drawing off the insured worker

  • Medicare and/or Medicaid continues

  • Applies to both SSI and SSDI

  • SSI must continue to meet all SSI eligibility criteria

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Basic Requirements

  • Participation in an approved program (work plan, IPE, IEP, provider agency, employment plan with government agency, ILC)

  • Participation began before the disability ceased

  • Continuation in the program will increase the likelihood that the individual will not return to the disability rolls

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Definition of disability over 18

  • Same for SSDI & SSI

  • The inability to engage in any substantial gainful activity (SGA) because of a medically determinable physical or mental impairment that can be expected to last for at least 12 months or that ends in death.

Over age 18, the question is “Can you Work Above Substantial Gainful Activity level?” When should the application for benefits be done?

  • In the month that you turn 18 years old

  • Remember that they are looking at how your disability creates barriers to full employment.

  • Can be working but earning less than SGA ($1,260 in 2020)

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What are the differences between SSI & SSDI (CDB)?


  • Is needs based. That is why all your resources and income are monitored.
  • You receive Medicaid (Title 19)


  • Is insurance paid through taxes. Must have work credits. Resources are not an issue, but income is.
  • Receive Medicare after a 24 month waiting period.
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CDB Childhood disability benefit

  • Disabled before the age of 22 and the child of an insured worker who is disabled, retired or deceased.
  • Same as SSDI
  • If SSDAC marries, benefits end unless to another SSDI/SSCDB beneficiary.

For more information about how work affects your Social Security Disability Benefits contact the Ticket to Work help line at 1-866-968-7842.

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