Texas residents with disabilities may be eligible for one or more state-funded programs to help with housing and food, vocational training and education, medical care, and other assistance to help recipients live with as much independence as possible. Eligibility for these programs is usually based on income and need, and the application process may be confusing for many people. An experienced Texas disability lawyer can help you prepare your application, including collecting supporting documents, and appeal a denial on your behalf.
Texas, the Social Security Disability Insurance and Supplemental Security Income
Supplemental Security Income (SSI) is a program intended to provide financially for those who meet disability or age qualifications and have limited income and assets.
In 2023, the qualifications for SSI were:
- Be over 65 years old, OR
- Have a qualifying disability preventing them from owning, OR
- Be vision impaired
Most SSI recipients also qualify for Texas Medicaid.
Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI), on the other hand, is intended to supplement benefits the applicant already receives. Eligibility is based on work credits or the number of years the applicant had gainful employment (that is, paid SSDI taxes on their income) and has a qualifying disability.
The 2023 SSDI qualifications are:
- Must have a qualifying disability, AND
- Have enough work credits
Applicants can fill out the application online and send supporting documents to the Social Security Administration (SSA) or visit a local SSA office for help applying.
Texas Medicaid Programs for People with Disabilities
The Texas Department of Health and Human Services administers Texas Medicaid, health insurance for low-income or disabled adults and children. Medicaid recipients are automatically eligible for the program, which is income-based eligibility.
Texas Medicaid (or CHIP for children under 18) covers:
- Preventative care and well-checkups
- Vaccinations and flu shots
- Emergency treatment in the ER or urgent care
- Limited hospital stays
- Qualifying surgeries and medical procedures
- Lab work and X-rays
- Medication and durable medical devices
People who require care in a nursing home or similar facility, like memory care, may also have their room, board, and medical treatments covered through the Home and Community Based Services Waiver. Applications may be completed online or at a local SSA or HHS office.
Disability Employment Programs in Texas
Many people with disabilities may still be able to work full or part-time. The Texas Workforce Solutions-Vocational Rehabilitation Services (TWS-VRS) provides help applying for jobs and vocational training to develop skills suited to the individual’s interests and abilities.
Mentors at the TWS-VRS guide program participants to jobs they’re suited for and work with local businesses to recruit and hire program participants. To qualify for these services, applicants must:
- Have a disability that results in substantial barriers to gainful employment, or
- Require assistance to prepare for, obtain, and retain a job, or
- Can only obtain employment with the help of these services
Qualifying disabilities for this program are broad and include help with post-secondary education and post-graduation employment. Applications are available online or in a local TWS office.
Other Disability Programs in Texas
Texas offers many other programs, both state and city-sponsored, for people with disabilities, many of which the HHS administers. Representatives of the HHS can help applicants apply for Medicare and Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) or food stamps. They also guide people with disabilities to programs in their city to help pay bills and transportation and obtain durable medical equipment not covered by Medicaid or Medicare.
Check Your Texas Disability Program Eligibility Today!
If you or a loved one have a qualifying disability, one or more of these programs can help enhance your quality of life and give you valuable skills for work or school. There is no cap on recipients for these programs; share these resources and information with others in need.