Being successful with your SSI child disability application means that you will begin receiving monthly federal payments. Taking care of a disabled child can be incredibly costly, which is why the financial assistance is going to help the family immensely. What can a Greenville family spend SSI for children on and are there limitations?
SSI Child Disability Benefits: An Overview
The person who receives the SSI funds on behalf of a disabled child is called the payee. The Social Security Administration has created a detailed guide that payees can rely on to understand their obligations and responsibilities better.
The guide has a section on how payees must use the monthly benefits.
According to the document, the first responsibility of the payee is to take care of the beneficiary’s everyday needs. These everyday needs include shelter, personal care, clothing, food and medical assistance. Recreational expenses can also be covered via the SSI child disability benefits.
One very important thing to keep in mind is that payees are not entitled to taking a fee or a commission out of the monthly SSI payment for the care that they provide.
After the basic needs of a disabled child are met, remaining funds are to be used for improving daily living conditions. Giving the child access to better medical care is one option. Paying fees for specialized school or training programs can also happen under the SSI program.
Finally, the SSA authorizes special purchases through the use of child disability benefits.
Special purchases for the beneficiary could include a new residence that is better suited to meet their needs, automobile equipment that will increase mobility or home improvements like the purchase of specialized furniture. Whenever such purchases are considered, the Social Security Administration may be contacted. Its consultants can guide a Greenville family through the purchase and whether SSI for children funds can be used to cover the expenses.
To get in touch with the Social Security Administration, call 1-800-722-1213. This is an automated service that can also be used to schedule a call with an SSA consultant.
Payee Misuse of Benefits – When Does It Occur?
Payees are required to maintain detailed records of the purchases and the services that SSI for children funds were spent on through the years. A Representative Payee Report will be mailed to the respective individual on an annual basis, and the report has to be completed and sent back by all payees. Some of the payees could be chosen for an onsite review. The performance of payee duties will be assessed during such sessions.
On occasions, a Greenville payee may use the SSI funds in a way that is not authorized or recognized by the SSA. In such situations, payee misuse of benefits will occur.
Allegations of funding misuse will be investigated thoroughly, which is why fiscal responsibility should never be taken lightly.
Payee misuse of funds can occur in a few specific scenarios. The most common ones include:
- Spending a portion of the funds on purchases that will not benefit the disabled child
- Stealing the beneficiary’s funds and making them available to a third party
- Deducting certain amounts in the form of a personal commission or a care fee
Anyone who suspects that SSI for children fund misuse is occurring can submit a signal to the Social Security Administration. Whenever misuse of funds is established through evidence, the guilty party will be responsible for paying the entire amount back.
In addition, the suitability of a particular individual to remain the payee is also going to be re-examined. A new payee could be appointed in such situations.
A person that makes full restitution and that observes the rules of the program in the future may be allowed to remain the payee.
Keep in mind that payee misuse of benefits could eventually be subjected to a criminal investigation. Both a prison sentence and a hefty fine could be the outcome of criminal prosecution, especially if the misuse of funds has been occurring systematically over a certain period of time.
Get Legal Assistance
Navigating the child disability benefits process could be confusing and overwhelming in the very beginning. This is why you may want to seek legal assistance. An experienced disability lawyer will help you handle the application process, and you will also be consulted about the best ways to spend the monthly payments.
We have the knowledge and the background to tackle even the most challenging SSI child disability issues. Don’t hesitate to contact us today and acquaint us with the specifics of your situation.