Children’s Supplemental Security Income cases are different from other cases in many ways. One such way is with a dedicated account and you are REQUIRED to have one. This is a special account that must be set up by the representative payee for the minor’s past-due benefits. It has to be a separate account and can only be a checking, savings or money market account and the account title must show that the minor owns it. This account is specifically for the past-due benefits received in a Children’s SSI case and you cannot deposit any other money into it. Not only does Social Security restrict what can go in the account, they also restrict what the money can be used for. The money in the account can only be used for: medical treatment, education or job skills training. If the money is being used for the benefit of the child it can also be used for in home nursing care, therapy, housing modification, or legal fees. Please note that you CANNOT use the money in the dedicated account for food, clothing or shelter. You are able to use your monthly SSI check for those necessities.
Social Security monitors the account by the representative payee filling out a yearly reporting. The representative payee is required to fill out a form detailing the account activity and to keep records of the payouts to make sure that they are for allowable activities only. So as the payee, you need to make sure that you can show how the expenses relate to the child’s disability. If you get a letter from Social Security and you do not understand what they are requiring of you it is important to contact an attorney who can explain your rights and responsibilities to you. Please let me know if you have any questions.