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 641 E. 112th Avenue - Northglenn, CO 80233 circle  Phone: (303) 428-0310
E-mail: circle Fax: (303) 650-9070

What is an intellectual/developmental disability?:

"An intellectual/developmental disability (I/DD) is a severe and lasting mental and/or physical impairment that occurs prior to the age of 22 and is likely to continue indefinitely. The disability results in significant limitations in three or more major life activities: self-care, language, learning, mobility, self-direction, living independently, economic self-sufficiency. About one out of ten families has a member with an (I/DD); 2.5 million children under 18 have significant developmental delay."

From Solving the Mysteries of Development by John F. Kennedy Center on Human Development:

I/DD include: mental retardation, autism, epilepsy, cerebral palsy, down syndrome and other neurological conditions.

Mental retardation:

currently there are more than 7.5 million people who met the definition of having mental retardation. Slightly more than 125,000 children are born each year who have mental retardation. Today, one out of every ten Americans has a family member with mental retardation.


Autism is a developmental disability that is the result of a neurological disorder. Children and adults with autism typically have deficiencies in communication. Some people have difficulty with social interactions and leisure or play activities. They may exhibit repeated body movements, unusual responses to other people or attachments to objects. Autism presents itself differently from person to person.

Cerebral Palsy (C.P.)

Cerebral Palsy is a functional difficulty caused by damage to the brain during pregnancy, delivery, or shortly after birth. This condition exhibits in the form of mobility differences, communication difficulties seizures or any combination of these.

Down Syndrome

Down Syndrome is characterized by the presence of an extra chromosome 21.


The word epilepsy means to have seizures. Epilepsy is a chronic condition of recurrent unprovoked seizures. It is not a disease. It s a symptom of a neurological difficulty.

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What is SSI and how do I get it?:

Children and adults with intellectual/developmental disabilities (I/DD) may be eligible for Supplemental Security Income (SSI), a federal program administered by the Social Security Administration. Generally, SSI can be used to supplement a person's income for food, clothing and shelter. Eligibility for SSI depends on a number of factors, including the nature of a person's disability and the nature and amount of a person's income and resources. In many cases an eligible person can receive SSI in addition to Medicaid, social services and food stamps. The following is an overview of the SSI program.

ELIGIBILITY Age or Disability

To be eligible for SSI, a person must be age 65 or older, or have a disability or be blind,and have limited resources and income and meet certain other requirements. A child with a disability or who is blind, as well as an adult, may be eligible. The age of a person with a disability or who is blind makes no difference. A person who qualifies for SSI on the basis of both age and disability or blindness can receive payments under whichever category is more advantageous.
A person who is 18 years of age or older is considered disabled if a physical or mental impairment or combination of impairments prevents him or her from working and is expected to last at least 12 months or to result in death. A child under the age of 18 may be found to have a disability if he or she has a physical or mental impairment (or combination of impairments) that results in "marked and severe functional limitations" and is expected to last at least 12 months or to result in death.
An adult or child is considered blind with vision no better than 20/200 or a limited visual field of 20 degrees or less in the better eye with the use of eyeglasses. If a person's


Under SSI, the term "income" means anything received that can be used to meet the needs for food, clothing or shelter. It includes cash, checks, items received "in kind," such as food and shelter, and many items that would not be considered income for federal or other tax purposes.
Under the SSI program, income is divided into two categories - earned and unearned.
Earned income includes wages, net earnings from self-employment and income received from sheltered workshops. Unearned income includes all income that is not earned, such as Social Security benefits, workers' or veterans compensation, pensions, support and maintenance in kind, annuities, rent and interest.
Generally, a person who has unearned income of less than $551 a month will qualify for a federal SSI payment. A couple generally can qualify with unearned income of less than $816. However, individuals who are applying for SSI disability benefits and earn more than $740 a month probably won't be eligible for benefits.
A recipient's other income may reduce the amount of the SSI payment. However, not everything a person receives is income, and some things that are income do not count.


A person may have resources of up to $2,000; a couple may have resources of up to $3,000. The resource limit for a couple applies even if only one member of a couple is eligible. The couple's resources are counted as if both members are eligible.
Not all resources are counted in determining if a person meets the resource limit.
A home or adjacent land isn't counted, regardless of its value. Personal effects or household goods with a total value of $2,000 or less are not counted. If the total value exceeds $2,000, the excess counts. The value is what an item can be sold for, less the amount of any legal debt against it. Generally the value one car owned by a person is not counted, nor is life insurance policies with a total face value of $1,500 or less per person counted. Property that is essential to an individual's self-support is not counted. This includes any property used in a trade or business or by the individual as an employee.

Shared resources and income

The federal law does not require support by relatives. But, in determining eligibility, the law assumes that a husband and wife who live together share their resources and income and that a child (under the age of 18) shares in the parents' resources and income.


In the year 2001, the maximum federal SSI payment is $531 a month for an eligible person and $796 a month for an eligible couple. Generally, SSI payments are figured on a retrospective basis. The amount of a recipient's monthly check is based on the actual countable income from two months earlier. There are some exceptions to this general rule.
The basic SSI payment is reduced by one-third if an eligible person or couple is living in another person's household and receiving support and maintenance in kind from that person. This reduction takes the place of setting the exact dollar value of the support and maintenance. Support and maintenance in kind is any food, clothing or shelter that is given to an eligible person, or is received because someone else pays for it.


Some SSI recipients are unable to manage their money, so their SSI payments must be made through a representative payee. A representative payee is responsible for using SSI payments received on behalf of the recipients to provide for their personal care and well-being.


The information provided is an overview of the Supplemental Security Income program administered by the Social Security Administration. For more exhaustive detailed information log on to the Social Security Administration Website at  or phone 1-800-772-1213.
For specific questions email Steve Potter at  .
The Social Security Administration in Colorado is located at 1616 Champa, 4th Floor,
Denver, Colorado 80202. Phone (303) 844-5215

How do I get guardianship? 
Email specific information by clicking on this link, or call Guardianship Alliance of Colorado @ (303) 228-5382

Does the Arc of Adams County have a fee for service?

Currently there is no fee for service. We do encourage membership and donations.

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