I'm Paul Badame from Rubin & Badame law, your Social Security Disability law firm. Today, we're going to talk about the Social Security Disability derivative benefit. We've already talked about the differences between SSD and SSI and how this derivative benefit is one of the big benefits for SSD.
What is a derivative benefit?
A derivative benefit is an extra amount you get, normally an extra 50% that a person receives for having a minor child or minor children. For example, let's say a person receives approximately $1,600 per month for SSD. If they have one minor child or if they have 10 minor children, they get approximately 50% extra for the children. Whether it's one or 10, it's the same amount. If that individual were to receive $1,600 per month, they would receive an extra 800 for the kids or the child if it's only one. That will be a total of $2,400 per month.
What are the criteria to get the derivative benefit and what are the rules for that? The first rule is that you're on SSD and you're receiving it. The second rule is that your benefit must be about a thousand a month or more in order to get that full 50% extra benefit for the kids.
The third rule is that you must have minor children that you are the primary custodian of. If you were not the primary custodian of the child, then the benefit would go to the other parent or to whoever has primary custody of the child or the children.
What if you have more than one child?
That extra 50% benefit remains the same, whether you have one or five children. If it's one child, you get the extra $800 for that particular child. If you have four minor children, then the amount will get broken down to $200 for each child, for a total of $800. You wouldn't get $800 for each child. It's just a maximum of 50% divided up among the children you have.
Which children qualify?
Here's another rule for the derivative benefit: In addition to the child being a minor and being in that person's custody, the child must be either a biological child or a legally adopted child of the custodial parent on SSD. Unfortunately you wouldn't get the derivative benefit for step kids.
If you have custody of another child that might be your niece, your nephew, or your cousin, you wouldn't get the derivative benefit for them either. There are only two situations where you get the benefit: it must be a biological child or a child that has been legally adopted by the individual on SSD.
One other big advantage of the derivative benefit is that like SSD, the derivative benefit can go retroactive for one year, from when the individual files for SSD, if they are found disabled back to that date. In addition to the $1,600 that can go retro for 12 months, so would the $800 for the child or the children.
And as long as that person remains on SSD, that extra derivative benefit would last until either your one minor child or the last of all of your minor children turns 18 or graduates from high school, whichever happens last.