Question:  As the holidays are upon us, my son will be receiving cash as holiday gifts from grandparents and aunts and uncles. We are currently preparing to ensure he can receive government benefits as he will be turning 18 in February. Will these gifts be a problem for him being able to qualify for government benefits?

Will Monetary Gifts Affect My ASD Child’s Government Benefits?

Your question has multiple layers to it, and unfortunately cannot be answered with a simple “yes or no.”  Let me first begin by saying I am glad you are thinking about and being cautious regarding how to protect your son’s eligibility for government benefits. The government benefits you will be applying for at his age 18 will help provide him a monthly income, health care, long term support and services, and possibly housing; however, you must stay within the rules.

One of those rules is a maximum allowable resource allowance, which continues to be quite low. You son will lose access to most, if not all, the benefits listed above if he is found to have more than $2,000 in non-allowable resources. These resources can include the sum of checking, savings, investment, custodial, CD’s, and even retirement accounts (if he has been working at all). Although this number is low, there is hope.

This article was featured in Issue 95 – Managing Autism Together

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