DISABILITY BENEFITS FOR AUTISM SPECTRUM DISORDER – LISTING 12.10
WHAT IS AUTISM SPECTRUM DISORDER?
Autism is a spectrum condition. This means that there is range to the disorder and some people have greater impairments than others. For example, some people with this condition do not use spoken language. However, others have excellent spoken language skills, but may have difficulty understanding what other people mean or they may be unable to read social cues.
People with ASD may also have rigid thinking and/or repetitive behaviors. For example, they may spend a lot of time organizing objects in a certain order. Or, they may say the same sentence over and over. These are a couple of simple examples of some symptoms.
Autism spectrum disorder is a neurological and developmental disorder that begins in childhood, but lasts throughout a person’s life. It includes what used to be known as Asperger syndrome and pervasive developmental disorders. Both males and females can have the disorder, but studies show that more men have the disorder than women.
SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS OF AUTISM SPECTRUM DISORDER
People with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) often have problems with communication skills and in dealing with other people. They might repeat certain behaviors and might not respond well to change in their daily activities. People with ASD often have different ways of learning, paying attention, or reacting to things. Typically, the signs and symptoms ASD begin during early childhood and last throughout life.
Examples of behaviors in children and adults with ASD might include:
- having trouble relating to others or not having an interest in other people at all
- avoiding eye contact
- wanting to be alone
- having trouble understanding other people’s feelings
- inability to talk
- inability to express their own feelings
- preferring not to be held or cuddled
- appearing to be unaware when people talk to them
- interest in people, but not knowing how to talk, play, or relate to them
- repeating words or phrases or repeating words or phrases in place of normal language
- having trouble expressing their needs using typical words
- not looking at objects when another person points at them
- inability to adapt to changes in routine
These are not all of the signs and symptoms of ASD. Additionally, the severity of symptoms differs between individuals. For example, some people with ASD are verbal and some are not. The spectrum of the disorder covers a variety of symptoms.
SSA’S LISTING 12.10 FOR AUTISM
The SSA has a specific listing to refer to win determining if you are disabled by Autism. The listing for adults is listing 12.10. First, you must have a diagnosis of Autism.
12.10 Autism spectrum disorder (see 12.00B8), satisfied by A and B:
- Medical documentation of both of the following:
- Extreme limitation of one, or marked limitation of two, of the following areas of mental functioning (see 12.00F):
In order to meet listing 12.10, you must have all of the criteria listed above. Additionally, you must be diagnosed by a doctor with the disorder and the disorder must last for more than 12 months. The length of the disorder is usually not a problem for those who are applying for benefits with ASD. However, obtaining the diagnosis can be difficult, depending on the severity of your symptoms.
WHAT TO DO IF YOU NEED TO APPLY SSI FOR BENEFITS FOR AUTISM
Typically, it is a parent who is applying for Supplemental Security Income benefits for their child who is on the Autism Spectrum. If your child has no work experience and is under the age of 18, then you can apply for your child. However, the SSI program has two requirements: 1) disability and 2) meeting the income and asset restrictions of the program. Many families are over the income and asset limitations set out by the SSI program.
WHY ARE RESOURCES IMPORTANT IN THE SSI PROGRAM?
The value of your resources is one of the factors that determines whether you are eligible for SSI benefits. However, not all resources count for SSI. If the value of your resources is over the allowable limit at the beginning of the month, you cannot receive SSI for that month. If you decide to sell the excess resources for what they are worth, you may receive SSI beginning the month after you sell the excess resources. You may even be able to receive benefits while you try to sell the excess resources in certain situations.
WHAT IS THE RESOURCE LIMIT?
The limit for countable resources in the SSI program is $2,000 for an individual and $3,000 for a couple. This isn’t much money for most families to have in their bank account. Therefore, only families who in the most critical financial need can obtain SSI benefits for their child.
WHAT RESOURCES DO NOT COUNT FOR SSI?
For SSI purposes, the Social Security Administration does not count:
- the home you live in and the land it is on;
- one vehicle, regardless of value, if you or a member of your household use it for transportation;
- household goods and personal effects (e.g., your wedding and engagement rings);
- life insurance policies with a combined face value of $1,500 or less;
- burial spaces for you or your immediate family;
- burial funds for you and your spouse, as long as the value is $1,500 or less (see the SSI Spotlight on Burial Funds);
- property you or your spouse use in a trade or business, or on your job if you work for someone else (see the SSI Spotlight on Property You Need for Self Support);
- if you have a disability or are blind, money or property you have set aside under a Plan to Achieve Self-Support (PASS) (see the Spotlight on PASS); and
- up to $100,000 of funds in an Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) account through a State ABLE program (see the SSI Spotlight on ABLE).
WHAT OTHER RESOURCES DO NOT COUNT FOR SSI?
There are other resources that do not count in the SSI program. Many of the income or asset limitations have a time limit. For example, tax refunds do not count against you for SSI purposes, but only for 12 months. See the list below for more information:
- retroactive SSI or Social Security benefits for up to 9 months after you receive them (including payments done in installments);
- grants, scholarships, fellowships, or gifts to pay educational expenses for 9 months after receipt;
- money in an Individual Development Account (IDA) (See the SSI Spotlight on IDAs);
- support and maintenance assistance and home energy assistance that the SSA does not count as income;
- cash for medical or social services that the SSA does not count as income is not a resource for 1 month;
- EXCEPTION: Cash reimbursements of expenses already paid for by the person are evaluted under the regular income and resources rules.
- health flexible spending arrangements (FSAs);
- State or local relocation assistance payments for 12 months;
- crime victim’s assistance, but only for 9 months;
- earned income tax credit payments, but only for 9 months;
- dedicated accounts for disabled or blind children (see Deeming Eligibility Chart for Children);
- disaster relief assistance which the SSA does not count as income;
- cash for the purpose of replacing a resource (for example, a house) that is lost, damaged, or stolen, but only for 9 months;
- All Federal tax refunds and advanced tax credits received on or after January 1, 2010, but only for 12 months;
- The first $2,000 of compensation per calendar year for participating in certain clinical trials; and
- Some trusts (See the SSI Spotlight on Trusts).
WHAT HAPPENS IF YOU GIVE AWAY OR SELL A RESOURCE?
If you or your spouse, or even a co-owner of a resource, give away a resource or sell it for less than it is worth, then it may make your child ineligible for SSI benefits for up to 36 months. How long you are ineligible for SSI benefits depends on the value of the resource that you transferred. Before giving away a resource in the hope of becoming eligible for SSI benefits, check the rules.
WHAT CANNON DISABILITY CAN DO FOR YOUR AUTISM DISABLITY CASE?
At Cannon Disability Law, we can help you collect your medical records and apply for benefits. There are many forms to complete when you first apply for benefits and we want to make sure you complete the forms properly. We can help you submit your application. Or, if you prefer you can file your own application online at the Social Security website.
If the SSA sent you a denial, you have 60 days to appeal the denial. You will also need to submit your medical records documenting the condition. We can also help you appeal a denial from the SSA, whether it is an initial denial or a denial at the reconsideration level. Do not hesitate to contact us to help you win your disability benefits. Put the legal experience of our team to work for you.
THE LEGAL TEAM AT CANNON DISABILITY CAN WIN YOUR DISABILITY BENEFITS
At Cannon Disability Law, we can help you win disability benefits for Autism Spectrum Disorder. Our legal team specializes in helping you prove you or your child’s disability. Our goal is to develop your case so that your medical records show the SSA you have a severe disability. We need to prove that your Autism Spectrum Disorder has the symptoms under Listing 12.10.
Our legal team works hard to prepare your case, because we know you need disability benefits to replace your income. Over the past 30 years, we have won over $100 million in ongoing and past-due benefits for our clients. When you are looking for a legal team with experience, hire a firm with a proven success record. If you need help with other mental issues, you can find out more about Utah mental disabilities here. Then, contact us today for your free consultation.
THE REPRESENTATIVES AT CANNON DISABILITY LAW
At Cannon Disability Law we can help you apply for benefits. Also, we can help you appeal an SSA denial. Additionally, we will represent you in court at your disability hearing. We will help you be a witness in your case. If your child has Autism Spectrum Disorder, we can help you testify on behalf of you child in court. If necessary, we can appeal your case to the Appeals Council. Likewise, we file appeals in Federal Court. Finally, we can represent you where you live. For example, we can represent you if need a disability attorney in Utah or Nevada. Additionally, we can help you if you live in Idaho, Colorado, or California.
Your ability to receive Medicaid and Medicare depends upon whether or not you are successful with your disability claim. In order to fight the SSA’s denials, you need a representative with experience. Hire us. Dianna Cannon has been representing people with disabilities for over thirty years. Brett Bunkall and Andria Summers also have many years of litigation experience. We have won over 20,000 disability hearings. You can trust us. We will do everything we can to win your SSD and SSI benefits for Autism Spectrum Disorder.