This page is intended to provide helpful links and information and is not a substitute for legal advice. If you have any questions, please consult with an attorney.
Probate Guide: A free resource from the Texas Young Lawyer’s Association for individuals with questions about Probate:
Links to the North Texas area statutory probate courts:
Collin County: https://www.collincountytx.gov/probate/Pages/default.aspx
Dallas County: https://www.dallascounty.org/government/courts/probate/
Tarrant County: https://www.tarrantcounty.com/en/probate-courts.html
Guardianship Guide: A free resource from the Texas Young Lawyer’s Association for individuals with questions about Guardianship:
Alternatives to Guardianship of the Estate: The ARC of Texas offers a master pooled Special Needs Trust that allows individuals with disabilities to open subaccounts in any dollar amount. These accounts provide individuals with disabilities (and their families) with a way to save money for disability-related expenses while allowing them to qualify for public benefits such as SSI and Medicaid. Find out more information about it here: https://www.thearcoftexas.org/trust/
The ABLE Act was signed into law in 2014. It is another vehicle for individuals with disabilities to save a limited amount of money for expenses while allowing them to qualify for public benefits such as SSI and Medicaid. In 2018, Texas began offering ABLE accounts to the public. Find out more information about it here: https://www.texasable.org/
Social Security has a representative payee program for individuals receiving SSI or other Social Security benefits who are unable to manage these benefits on their own. Below is a link to the Social Security Administration’s website explaining the representative payee program: https://www.ssa.gov/payee/index.htm
For more information about alternatives to guardianship and support services available in your community, contact a Guardianship Attorney.
SOCIAL SECURITY RESOURCES
How to Access Social Security Online
Did you know that you can get a copy of your Social Security statement and view your Social Security benefits online? Visit the Social Security Administration’s website to set up an account online here (Please note, that once you set up an account online, SSA will stop sending paper statements in the mail): https://www.ssa.gov/myaccount/
Did you know that you can apply for Social Security disability insurance benefits online as well as appeal a denial of disability benefits? Visit the Social Security Administration’s website to start the application process online here (Please note that applications for SSI cannot be completed online at this time. You must contact the Social Security Administration to set an appointment to complete the SSI application.): https://secure.ssa.gov/iClaim/dib
To appeal a denial of benefits, go here: https://www.ssa.gov/benefits/disability/appeal.html
For questions about the Social Security appeals process, please contact a social security attorney.
Listing of Impairments
The Social Security Administration maintains a “Listing of Impairments” that contains the criteria the agency uses for evaluating your medical condition(s). Contact a social security lawyer to find out how the Social Security Administration evaluates medical conditions using the Listing of Impairments. Below are links to the Listing of Impairments for adults and children.
Once you have been eligible to receive SSDI benefits for 24 months, you will be enrolled in Medicare. After you are approved for SSDI benefits and Medicare coverage, Social Security will automatically deduct the premium payment for your Medicare coverage from your monthly SSDI check. For some folks, this premium payment represents a substantial cut to their disability benefits. However, Texas offers a Medicare savings program for disabled individuals with assets of less than $2,024, which can help with paying for all or part of the Medicare premium. For more information about this program and how to apply, click here.