Financial Help

Boy lying on his stomach reading with his dog leaning on him

Parents tell us...

"It's like a part time job trying to figure out how to pay for the things she needs. I get worn out." 

"I don't know what's going to happen when we are unable to care for him ourselves. Will there be enough money for him to have what he needs?"

"I don't know where to start with insurance."

Health insurance

Navigating health insurance can seem overwhelming.  There are people who can help.

Medicine and prescriptions

Prescriptions can be extremely expensive. Let your doctor and pharmacist if you are having trouble paying for medicine.

Try Needy-Meds

Oregon Prescription Drug Program for lower cost medications.

Other resources for specific situations

For military families:  different branches Military Aid Society Offices.  The Army Emergency Relief (AER) now has a category for families with dependents who have special needs. 

Domestic Violence: Getting child support while staying safe

Specific genetic or complex disorders: Patient Services Incorporated (Check their diagnosis list for eligibility)

Long-term financial planning

Home and vehicle modifications for safety and accessibility

Community Developmental Disabilities Programs

Centers for Independent Living

Vocational Rehabilitation

The Steelman Family Foundation: Wheelchair accessible vehicles

NW Access fund: Funding sources for home modifications

Many support groups keep updated information about vehicle modifications.  The Spina Bifida Association of Oregon and United Cerebral Palsy of Oregon happily share information.

Paying for conferences and trainings

Attending conferences and trainings is a good way to learn more about caring for your child, and may provide much needed support in overcoming challenges.
Getting to the Conference

Aging and disability resource connection (Grandparents raising grandchildren)

If your child receives Community Developmental Disability Services you can ask your case manager to add classes, trainings, or conferences to your child's Individual Service Plan. The Aging and Disability Resource Connection provides some conference scholarships for grandparents raising grandchildren.

See the OR F2F HIC tip sheet, Getting You to the Conference, for other ideas.

Payment plans and financial assistance for medical bills

Hospitals and providers that take Medicaid offer financial assistance to families that make up to 400% of federal poverty limits.  Discounts are available for self-pay procedures if you can pay your bill in one payment. If you cannot pay all at once, you can set up an interest-free payment plan.  In addition, most hospitals have foundations that can assist patients. 

If you need coaching on managing medical debt, contact DollarFor, which provides guidance on dealing with overwhelming medical expenses.

Supplemental Security Income (SSI)

Some children under the age of 18 who experience disability qualify for monthly SSI payments, based on parent's income. Start by looking at these three information sheets:

What you should know before applying for SSI

Supplemental Security Income for children with disabilities.

Child SSI disability starter kit

A critical part of the application is the child disability report.  To speed up the process, start this ahead of time.   You do want to be careful about your IEP goals and statements.  They must be realistic and show that your child is unable to support themselves, otherwise your application will probably be denied.

If your youth is 18 or older, use the adult forms unless you are retired and getting Social Security payments yourself.  Apply for disability when you turn 18.

Compassionate Allowance List:  Some health conditions are so severe that the Social Security Administration automatically assumes that children are eligible based on disability.  They must still meet income guidelines, however.  Check the Compassionate Allowance List.

Applying for SSI is a complex process and having someone familiar with it can help you avoid mistakes.  If you need assistance finding someone to help, contact your local Social Security office or call the OR F2F HIC at 855-323-6744.

If your youth is 18 or older, use the adult forms, unless you are retired and getting Social Security payments yourself.  Apply for disability when you turn 18.

Scholarships and advanced education

Scholarships and supports are available. 

Tried all of these?  Confused by all the options? Contact us:

855-323-6744 (English)

503-931-8930 (Spanish)