helping relieve the heavy financial burden
Individuals who suffer from cerebral palsy often require specialized, on-going care and expensive equipment, which places a significant burden on their family and loved ones. CPFN recognizes this heavy financial burden, and we want to help. We have compiled a detailed list of resources that provide financial relief to individuals with CP or other disorders/disabilities.
The resources we’ve compiled range from government benefits to non-profit organizations, from grants to legal compensation—in the event that medical malpractice took place. Although these resources may not be applicable to everyone, we encourage you to look through the list below and pursue those that are available to you or your loved one.
Government benefits programs include:
Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI)
Social security disability insurance provides a monthly income for individuals who are unable to work because of physical or mental limitations. Unlike supplemental security income (SSI), SSDI is funded by payroll taxes of people who work in the United States.
The benefits of SSDI may be temporary (monthly) or permanent depending on the severity of the individual’s disability. However, even though cerebral palsy is a lifelong condition, it doesn’t always mean that SSDI will be permanent.
To qualify for SSDI, the applicant must:
- Prove that the mental or physical disability is expected to last at least one year
- Demonstrate that the parents or guardian of the child have maintained employment for the last 10 years and paid social security taxes
- Show evidence that there are no current training programs (for adult applicants) they qualify for
Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
Supplemental security income is a form of financial assistance for people with disabilities, including cerebral palsy, provided by the government. SSI is provided via a monthly check to individuals with a serious disability, such as CP. The SSI is reserved for families who receive a low annual income, and it allows the government to pay for fundamental needs such as clothing or meals.
In order to be eligible for SSI, applicants must:
- Be a legal citizen of the United States
- Provide proof (medical documentation) of physical or cognitive limitations
- Have limited financial resources
- Expect disability to last at least one year or longer
It’s important to be aware of one of the drawbacks of SSI. Unlike other types of government-issued financial aid, SSI is funded by the United States Treasury. This allows recipients to receive SSI funds without being required to have work credits beforehand. However, that also means that the amount of monthly compensation tends to be lower than other forms of government financial assistance.
Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF)
The federal government created the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program to provide temporary compensation for families and children in need.
The TANF program provides grant funds to states and territories to provide families with financial assistance and related support services. State-administered programs may include child care assistance, job preparation, and work assistance.
Most of the financial aid is targeted at households that are living in poverty, or close to it. However, the length and amount of assistance your family may be entitled to varies from state to state. For example, while some states may allow recipients to receive TANF for four or more years, other states may cap the duration at two or three years. The amount of financial assistance you are entitled to may also vary depending on where you live.
In order to qualify for TANF, applicants must meet the following criteria:
- Unemployed status, but actively seeking employment
- Proven participation in job training
- Specific income guidelines
Aging and Disability Resource Assistance
Cerebral palsy is a lifelong disorder. That’s why the Aging and Disability Resource Centers (ADRC) offer valuable benefits for your child with cerebral palsy once they reach 18 years of age. The ADRC offers various types of assistance to adult CP patients that help them become more independent, including:
- Financial planning and assistance
- Job training and job search assistance
- Legal help
- Housing assistance
- Medical and dental assistance
- Prescription medication coverage
- Home care assistance
- Mental health counseling services
Variety – The Children’s Charity – Freedom Program
Variety, The Children’s Charity is dedicated to providing necessary equipment for children with CP. The funds collected by the charity are used to purchase:
- Service Animals
- Adaptive Bicycles
- Walkers/standing aids/ positioning systems
- Vehicle Modifications
Variety provides fundamental equipment, and dedicated coaches to help enhance a CP child’s mobility, social skills, and independence.
UnitedHealthcare Children’s Foundation
The UnitedHealthcare Children’s Foundation is invested in providing CP families with the necessary health services they require. The foundation financially takes care of all services that are not covered by the family’s current insurance plan. They also award grants up to $5,000 annually, per child affected. (Applicants do not need to be United Healthcare subscribers to qualify for grant.)
The Giving Angels Foundation is a 501(c)(3) with a 100% Volunteer Board. The Foundation awards grants to lower income families to enhance the everyday life of the child.
Cerner Charitable Foundation is building healthier tomorrows and stronger communities around the world through individual medical grants and wellness programs, engaging volunteerism, community initiatives and strategic partnerships.
Many are unaware that CP can be caused by the medical negligence of doctors and hospital staff. The result of these preventable medical errors is a life-altering verdict: the bright future of health and possibility for a child is forever changed by a severe disorder. This new future is accompanied by overwhelming medical expenses and financial challenges that often last the lifetime of the child with CP. The most disheartening fact is it could have been prevented.
Every year, over 28,000 babies suffer preventable birth injuries which lead to life-altering consequences, including CP. If your child has CP, you owe it to him/her to find out what went wrong and what caused it. A birth injury or medical malpractice mistake may have led to your child’s CP diagnosis, and you deserve to know the truth.
Your child’s medical records contain the facts about what happened during the birth and delivery process and often disclose the cause of your child’s CP. Medical records can be difficult to understand and, at times, hospitals have hidden the records or covered up the truth to hide their medical negligence. If you are wondering what caused your child’s CP, the best course of action is to talk with an experienced medical and legal team. They will assess whether medical malpractice may have been the cause, and will then help you access and understand the records. Regardless of what they find within the records, you will have peace of mind knowing the truth behind your child’s CP. Get help in obtaining and checking your medical records.
What Types of Compensation Can a Lawyer Help Me Get?
Through the help of our legal advocates, Janet, Janet & Suggs, LLC (JJS), thousands of families have received hundreds of millions of dollars in compensation for:
- Medical expenses
- Reimbursement for home accommodations
- Physical pain and emotional suffering
- Lost wages (if applicable)
- Special education costs
- Rehabilitation and therapy
- Assistive equipment
For over 40 years, the Cerebral Palsy Family Lawyers at Janet, Janet & Suggs, LLC have worked to uncover medical errors and fight for the justice birth injury victims deserve. JJS has won record-breaking verdicts and negotiated record-breaking settlements across the country. These funds allow families living with CP to provide their loved one with the medical treatments, on-going care, and support necessary to live the best life possible.
If you are wondering what caused your child’s CP or feel uneasy about your delivery, you may deserve financial compensation. We know how heavy the financial burden can be and we want to ensure you get the financial support you deserve. Fill out the short form below to get a second opinion of what caused your child’s CP from CPFN’s legal advocates.