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Does Social Security Pay Caregivers

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Social Security Disability Programs

2 On Your Side: Social Security Payments

Two Social Security programs benefit people with chronic illnesses or disabilities:

  • Supplemental Security Income
  • Social Security Disability Insurance

These programs provide monthly payments, including back pay, to beneficiaries. Payments help pay for daily living needs and medical care. Additionally, SSDI may provide payments to the beneficiary’s dependents.

SSI is need-based, and applicants must meet financial and medical requirements to qualify for benefits. SSDI is available to people who were employed within the last 10 years and paid Social Security taxes. People with progressive illnesses or disabilities that arise later in life often benefit from SSDI.

Some people may need to apply for both programs while determining which is most appropriate for their situation. Occasionally, people with enough medical needs and financial hardship can receive benefits from both programs.

How Do I Apply To Be A Caregiver For My Mother

Contact the AAAs Information & Assistance program for information about local programs and services, eligibility criteria, and application information by calling 1-800-510-2020. Visit the California Department of Social Services for contact information for your local Social Services office.

Qualifying For Social Security As A Caregiver

As the spouse or family member caring for a loved one who is seriously ill you can apply for Social Security benefits to help cover costs involved with being his or her caregiver. Eligibility depends on several factors such as financial need, state of residence, income, and assets. Some applicants may only qualify for benefits from one program while those in serious financial need may qualify for both SSI and SSDI.

You may also qualify for benefits if your spouse is suffering from a serious medical condition such as:

  • ALS
  • Multiple Sclerosis
  • Cancer

If youve applied for Social Security benefits as a caregiver and been denied, you may want to look into other state-funded programs that pay spouses as caregivers. State programs may also assist in paying for part or all of home care should you choose to hire through an agency. In the state of Arizona, you may be eligible for Self Directed Attendant Care benefits as the caregiver of a loved one. Depending on the circumstances, you may also be eligible for Medicare assistance to cover home care services.

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Jumping Right In: Will Social Security Pay For A Caregiver

The answer is that social security for retirement will not pay for a caregiver directly. However, older adults in need of care may use their social security income to hire and pay someone to look after them. If someones lifetime earnings are sufficient and they have waited to collect benefits until their full retirement age or beyond, their monthly checks might be adequate to pay for a caregiver.

Similarly, social security will not directly pay for any other costs associated with caregiving, such as medications, medical equipment, home modifications, and personal care supplies. Once again, social security recipients may use this income to cover these costs.

Applying For Social Security Benefits

Does Social Security Pay For Caregivers ...

SSDI application is available through the SSAs website. You can use the online application to begin your SSI claim too.

If your loved one cannot apply on their own, you can fill out their application for them. The easiest way to apply is online through the SSAs website.

All applications can be submitted online now. Make sure you have all of your loved ones paperwork and medical records in order before you apply.

After you submit the initial application, it will usually take the SSA between 3 and 5 months in order to get back to you with a decision. Call the SSA toll-free at 1-800-772-1213 to schedule an appointment or to discuss interview options.

If you are a caregiver and applying on behalf of a loved one with an illness, get a free case evaluation today.

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Ssi And Ssdi Benefits

Disability includes Supplemental Security Income and Social Security Disability Insurance . If the person for whom youre applying was previously employed, paid Social Security taxes, and had a recent work history , then he or she will likely qualify for SSDI. This is where many people with progressive or adult-onset illnesses will qualify, such as those with Parkinson’s disease or early-onset ALS.

SSI benefits may be available to your friend or family member, based on his or her financial situation, living circumstances, and other factors. SSI is need-based and requires a review of financial details in addition to personal information and medical records.

Some applicants qualify for benefits through just one program. Those in the most dire financial circumstances may receive benefits through SSI in addition to SSDI. Applicants who have no employment records or no recent work history may get SSI instead of SSDI benefits.

As the caregiver of a seriously ill adult, you may need to apply for both programs and discuss eligibility considerations with an SSA representative.

Who Qualifies As A Caregiver Under Medicare Rules

Whos eligible?

  • You must be under the care of a doctor, and you must be getting services under a plan of care created and reviewed regularly by a doctor.
  • You must need, and a doctor must certify that you need, one or more of these:
  • You must be homebound, and a doctor must certify that youre homebound.

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Will Social Security Help Pay For In Home Care

As seniors receive payment directly from the government, they or their loved ones are free to apply those dollars toward home care , adult day care , or residential care . However, the average amount of a Social Security check is approximately $1,461 / month, which is well short of the cost of long-term care .

Contact A Disability Lawyer

How Does Social Security Work?

No matter which way you and your caregiver decide to apply for disability, talking to a lawyer about your case can help immensely. Call Jorgensen Law today at 1-888-855-2948 and let us walk you through the process to increase your chances at approval. If your application is denied, our experienced lawyers can assist you with an appeal to get you the benefits you need and deserve. Contact us to discuss your SSDI/SSI caregiver supplement at a free initial consultation.

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Using Veterans Programs To Pay Caregivers

Many veterans can cover the cost of caregivers through the Veteran-Directed Home and Community-Based Services program. With its flexible budgeting, this program allows veterans to pay for the services and goods that are most beneficial to them. The funds can be used to hire a personal care aide, and family members and friends generally qualify for employment in the role. Aid and Attendance benefits connected to the VA pension plan also provide payments for caregivers. Get in touch with the VA pension management center for your area for more information.

Which Medical Conditions Qualify For Ssi Or Ssdi

The SSA Bluebook lists all of the medical conditions that qualify a person for SSI or SSDI benefits. Examples of conditions include:

  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Severe arthritis
  • Genetic disorders

Some conditions, such as ALS or having vision less than 20/200 with correction, automatically meet the medical requirements for Social Security benefits. Other conditions may only qualify if an applicant can document the severity of the disability. For example, a person with arthritis may only qualify if they can show mobility impairments or an inability to complete daily living tasks.

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Benefits For Your Divorced Spouse

If you are divorced, even if you have remarried, your ex-spouse may qualify for benefits on your record.

To qualify on your record, your ex-spouse must:

  • Have been married to you for at least 10 years.
  • Be at least 62 years old.
  • Be unmarried.
  • Not be eligible for an equal or higher benefit on their own Social Security record, or on someone else’s Social Security record.

Does Social Security Pay For Caregivers

Does Social Security Pay For Caregivers ...

When a loved one needs help, family members are usually the first people to volunteer their services. A 2020 study conducted by AARP and the National Alliance for Caregiving determined that almost 50 million Americans provide unpaid care for family or friends at an average of 24 hours per week. A separate 2021 study indicated that almost 80% of family caregivers incur an average of $7,200 in out-of-pocket costs for this care.

Many people take on debt or stop saving money of their own to provide for their loved ones. AARP estimates that unpaid family caregivers can expect to pay up to 20% of their income in care-related costs. And if they have to leave the workforce to provide at-home care, there will be ramifications for their own retirement benefits.

Unfortunately, Social Security Disability Insurance , Supplemental Security Income , or retirement benefits through Social Security will not pay for caregiving directly. Beneficiaries can use the funds they receive from any of these programs to pay for the care of their preference oftentimes, however, these funds are needed to meet basic living expenses, and there is not enough to cover the cost of care at home from a loved one.

Many SSI beneficiaries also qualify for Medicaid. Although the individual states run Medicaid programs, and each state has its own criteria for how to qualify for assistance, there are some conditions under which Medicaid will provide for caregiver benefits.

Need Help?

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Does Supplemental Security Income Pay For A Caregiver

SSI will not pay a caregiver directly, but you can use SSI funds to either pay an individual for care services or a company that provides care through their staff.

Keep in mind that SSI is a joint state and federal program that is income-based. While each state has its own standards to qualify for benefits, Medicaid does offer caregiver assistance under specific conditions. Many states have programs designed to pay for care at home instead of in a nursing home. These Medicaid Waiver programs, as they are often called, might offer the following services if you qualify:

  • In-home health care
  • Personal care services, such as help bathing, eating and transferring
  • Help with household chores, such as shopping, cleaning, or laundry
  • Caregiver support
  • Minor modifications to the home to make it more accessible
  • Medical equipment

Family members can get paid for providing care to someone on Medicaid in many states. The applicant applies for Medicaid and chooses a program allowing the recipient to pick a caregiver. Often called consumer-directed care, these state programs are offered under several titles, including the Medicaid State Plan Personal Care and the Medicaid HCBS Waivers programs.

Medicaid might also pay for caregiving assistance, including:

Financially Qualifying For Ssi

Because minors often have minimal or no income or assets of their own, the SSA must consider the financial circumstances of the child as well as the parents, guardians, foster parents or other caregiver. Children are also unable to apply for benefits for themselves, which means the SSA has standard processes in place to allow any adult who cares for a child with a disability to apply for SSI on his or her behalf.

Before applying, you may wish to review the SSA’s Child Disability Starter Kit. This kit explains the SSI program and the information and documentation that will be necessary for filing a claim on behalf of a child. The SSA must review the financial details of the household in which the child lives. This includes the income, assets and other financial resources of the entire family.

Although the SSI qualification rules are strict, many children are able to receive support, even when they have two parents who work and earn a decent living. This is because the SSA excludes some income and other financial resources from consideration. They additionally only assign or “deem” a portion of available income and assets to the child, which makes it more likely a child will be approved. Also considered is family size and whether income is earned or unearned, among other factors.

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Paid Caregivers And Disability Benefits Can Go Hand

If you or someone you know is caring for a disabled person, give us a call. The person who is disabled may be eligible for SSDI or SSI benefits, as well as disability benefits for California residents.

For a free consultation with an experienced Social Security attorney, consult with an attorney at The Law Offices of Martin Taller. Call us at 714-385-8100. We assist clients through Southern California from our home office in Anaheim.

Social Security Benefits For A Spouse/caregiver

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Social security benefits help spouses survive.

The Social Security Administration has been providing benefits to survivors and dependents of insured workers since 1939. A worker qualifies for benefits by working at least 10 years and earning 40 credits toward those benefits. The spouse of an insured worker can gain access to Social Security benefits once her spouse has fulfilled the requirements for eligibility.

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Does Social Security Cover Home Health Care

As seniors receive payment directly from the government, they or their loved ones are free to apply those dollars toward home care, adult day care, or residential care. However, the average amount of a Social Security check is approximately $1,461 / month, which is well short of the cost of long-term care.

If Your Spouse Also Worked Under Social Security

If your spouse is eligible for retirement benefits on their own record, we will always pay that amount first. But, if the spouses benefit that is payable on your record is a higher amount, they will get a combination of the two benefits that equals the higher amount.

If your spouse will also receive a pension based on work not covered by Social Security, such as government or foreign work, their Social Security benefit on your record may be affected.

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Other Caregiver And Caregiving Cost Resources

If you dont qualify for SSDI or SSI and dont want to take early social security retirement benefits, here are some other possible sources of assistance to consider:

  • VA Benefits. If you or your spouse has been in the military, you may be eligible for in-home caregiver services or reimbursement through the VA.
  • Long-term Care Insurance. Some families opt to purchase long-term care insurance to help pay for the cost of in-home, assisted living, or nursing care.
  • National Council on Aging. The National Council on Aging has a Benefits CheckUp Program where you put in your zip code to find financial resources in your area.
  • Area Agencies on Aging. Your Area Agency on Aging will have a wealth of information on caregiver support programs. A good place to start to find your location is the National Association of Area Agencies on Aging. Your Area Agency on Aging may also have reduced fee attorneys who can help determine social security benefits.

How A Caregiver Can Apply For Ssi On Behalf Of A Child

Does Social Security Pay For Caregivers ...

Children with a wide range of medical conditions are able to qualify for Social Security disability benefits. When a child receives benefits from the Social Security Administration , these benefits are usually paid through the Supplemental Security Income program, a need-based form of disability that requires a detailed review of medical as well as financial information. Once approved though, a child can continue to receive support each month for as long as he or she meets the SSA’s eligibility requirements. Adults can receive SSI too! If you are caring for an adult who has been disabled since birth, he or she will still likely need to apply for SSI benefits.

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Long Term Care Insurance

In some circumstances, long term care insurance policies can be used to pay spouses for caregiving, but much is dependent on the specific policys rules. For example, the policy must cover non-medical, personal care provided at home. If a policy pays out cash benefits directly to the policyholder, there would be no need to pay a spouse, since the spouse is already sharing in the benefits. However, if the policys rules state that they will only pay out to licensed care providers, then a couple might want to pursue this option. There are multiple steps involved in this process. The caregiving spouse may need to become a licensed non-medical, home care provider and register with their state. Their newly formed home care agency is hired by the care recipient. Once care is provided, they invoice for their hours, and those invoices are sent to the long term care insurance company for payment. Though initially logistically challenging, this option can bring significant income to a caregiving spouse over the long term. Long term care policyholders whod like assistance establishing this arrangement should contact us to be connected with an expert.

What Happens To Unused Social Security Benefits

Any unused money goes to the Social Security trust funds, not a personal account with your name on it. Many people think of Social Security as just a retirement program. Most of the people receiving benefits are retired, but others receive benefits because theyre: A spouse or child of someone getting benefits.

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Paid Family Leave Laws

Paid family leave laws allow a person to temporarily take time off work to care for a spouse while still collecting a percentage of their salary. Currently, only six locations have these laws:

  • Washington D.C.
  • California
  • Washington State

The Family Medical Leave Act , a federal law, protects a persons job and health insurance if they take time off to care for a family member. However, it does not ensure any pay for the person taking time away from work and only applies to those working for larger employers.

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