According to the National Center for Education Statistics during the 2019-2020 school year approximately 14% of all public school students received special education services under an IEP (COE - Students With Disabilities (ed.gov).
Parents have multiple questions when their child first receives and IEP. Parents may ask what this practically means for their child. Is my child legally disabled because of the IEP? Does this IEP mean my child could win an SSI claim? The short answer is no. While many children who have IEP's may be SSI eligible they would not automatically be entitled to benefits because of the IEP.
IEP stands for individualized education program. While the specifics of the IEP process varies by state, the basic procedure remains the same. When a teacher identifies a student who may be behind his or her peers that student is evaluated by a trained professional (usually a school psychologist) to determine if they have an identifiable condition which would benefit from individual or specialized services. A student may qualify for disability under one of the following:
Hearing or Vision Impairment;
Specific Learning Disability;
Traumatic Brain Injury;
Speech and Language Impairment;
Or Other Health Impairment.
If your child is given an IEP from their school consider what symptoms display before filing a child's SSI claim. Evaluate your child against their peers, what separates them others their age? Are they able to make friends and socialize normally? Does your child fidget or struggle to pay attention? If you child has an IEP for any of these reasons then they very well may qualify for SSI if their disabilities are clear and materially impact their daily lives.
Please reach out to me for more information.