If working is not an option to attain financial independence, the health care professional should guide the young person with rheumatic disease to look into social security supports. In the United States, it is called Supplemental Security Income (SSI), and it is a monthly payment for individuals with disabilities. To qualify for SSI, individuals must meet both disability and financial eligibility requirements. SSI eligibility is re-determined using adult criteria when adolescents turn 18 years old. Young people with rheumatic disease may lose their SSI at this time because individual rather than household income is used to determine income eligibility or because they do not meet the adult disability criteria. Generally speaking, adults in the United States who receive SSI cannot have assets greater than $1,500 and still remain eligible.
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