For people with disabilities and their loved ones, planning for the future is like playing a game without the rules, blindfolded, and with one hand tied behind your back. You are expected to know the rules (government regulations), while planning for a future you cannot see, with disability challenges that may make it difficult to do basic tasks.
Disability is not one-size-fits-all, and even the definition of disability varies by government agency. The main types of benefits available for people with disabilities are Social Security Disability, Supplemental Security Income (SSI), and Medicaid. Our goal is to help families navigate the difficult tasks of getting or retaining benefits and making good choices in planning for the future. Our services are ideal for families that have loved ones with special needs, especially those transitioning into adulthood, starting employment, or looking into the next step in living arrangements. Disability services are also available for adults with physical and mental disabilities, whether you’ve previously been denied or not. Some of the questions families often ask are:
- What benefits are available to me and my child? How do I know if I’m receiving all the benefits I am entitled to?
- Why am I only getting X amount of benefits? Are there more funds/services available to me?
- The Social Security office told me my child no longer qualifies for benefits. How do I file an appeal? Do I need an attorney?
- A friend told me that when I retire, my disabled adult child could get my benefits. Is that true?
- My child is in a group home but the group home said their Medicaid is expiring. I can’t lose Medicaid. What do I do?
- How do I find services for my disabled adult child? What are they supposed to do after high school?
As part of our expanding disability planning practice, we would like to introduce the newest member of the team. Teresa Center, LMSW brings her extensive knowledge of disability rules and resources to our clients. Teresa has a Masters degree in Social Work from UT Arlington and has over ten unique years of hands-on disability field experience. She managed the non-profit, For Families of Special Needs and is a Social Security certified representative specializing in disability and SSI. Teresa has previous experience with the CLASS Medicaid waiver program and has worked and volunteered at Camp Summit as well as numerous other organizations. She has pursued her passion for helping people with special needs since age eighteen. She will be consulting with our clients regarding disability issues. As a special bonus, Teresa will review benefits at no charge. If you or anyone you know gets SSI or disability or needs to apply for benefits, please let us know. She can tell them if they are getting all the benefits for which they qualify.