MY GUIDE Agencies > Getting Social Security Benefits for Your Child with a Disability

KEYWORDS: age 1 up to age 3age 3 through 5agenciesnewborn up to age 1state agency

What Social Security is and who it is for

Social Security is a federal program that provides monthly income and health insurance coverage to eligible children.

Supplemental Security Income (SSI) pays monthly benefits to children with disabilities from families who have limited income and resources.

Social Security Disability Insurance pays monthly benefits to children with disabilities from families with a family member who worked long enough and paid Social Security taxes.

Who is eligible and how to apply for Social Security

Apply for these benefits at your local Social Security Office. To find it, use the Social Security Office Locator.

Eligibility may be based on the severity of your child’s disability and on your family income. Get more details about Social Security eligibility.

Having the right information when you apply will make things easier.

  • Be ready to supply information about the doctors, therapists, hospitals, and clinics that have treated your child in the last year
  • Be ready to supply your child’s medical records and a list of medications your child is taking
  • Download the Child Disability Interview Checklist (PDF) to help gather all the information you will need in the application process

After you apply for Social Security benefits

Your application will be reviewed by Disability Determination Services (DDS). DDS is an office within the Texas Department of Assistive and Rehabilitative Services (DARS). Even though Social Security is a federal program and makes the final eligibility decisions, DDS helps the Social Security Administration (SSA) process your application. Someone from DDS will likely contact you to tell you whether your application was successful, or to get more information. If you have already filed a disability claim with Social Security, you can contact DDS at 512-437-8000 or 1-800-252-7009 for information or questions concerning your claim.


Organize all of your child’s medical and educational information into a single folder or notebook. This will save you a lot of time, both now and in the future.

Also see How to Organize Your Child’s Medical Information