Can You Get Disability Pay for Dementia?

Apr 22, 2022 | Planning for Long Term Care

We understand that financial planning for the care of your loved one with dementia can feel like a huge undertaking. Know that at any age, your loved one may be eligible for benefits from the Social Security Administration (SSA) that can help pay for dementia care.

The SSA benefit programs include:

SSDI (Social Security Disability Insurance)

This program is offered to workers with dementia that are younger than 65 years of age, and those that are unable to work in any occupation and have been diagnosed with a form of dementia that will last for at least a year. 

A worker is described as an individual that worked for at least 40 “quarters of credit,” which is about ten years of work.  

This benefit is paid to the “insured,” or a designated family member if the disabled person has been working long enough and has paid Social Security taxes. SSA pays this benefit monthly. This program is beneficial for individuals with early-onset dementia. 

SSI (Supplemental Security Income Program)

 This program provides monthly income for people that are over 65 years of age and are disabled and considered low-income

The SSA provides a helpful webpage with access to an online application, a free telephone helpline, and details on what information you will need before you apply (a checklist), and how to apply in person at a Social Security office. 

Compassionate Allowances

The SSA uses Compassionate Allowances as a way to identify diseases and other medical conditions to expedite the processing of SSDI and SSA claims.

The following types of dementias are listed under CAL:

  • Early-onset Alzheimer’s Disease
  • Frontotemporal Dementia 
  • Lewy Body Dementia 
  • Mixed Dementias
  • ALS Parkinsonism Dementia Complex
  • Creuzfeldt-Jakob Dementia 
  • Adult-onset Huntington’s Disease Dementia (HD)

Learn more about CAL at SSA’s webpage for Compassionate Allowances.

Medicare or Medicaid

If your loved one with dementia does not qualify for either of these programs, they may qualify for Federal health insurance through Medicare or the jointly funded Federal and state program Medicaid. These programs can help with some medical fees, in-patient hospital care, outpatient prescription drugs, and other forms of health care. 

In the state of Texas, caregivers often ask what benefits for assisted living services are covered in Texas, and whether Medicare or Medicaid pays for assisted living services. It is good to remember now that these two services do NOT cover Assisted Living and Memory Care. 

We give an overview of the most common benefits in our blog post, Does Medicare & Medicaid Pay for Assisted Living in Texas? 

Having the Conversation with Your Loved One

Have the conversation with your loved one about their diagnosis and memory care as soon as possible to help them feel safe and secure. 

Avoid frustration and feelings of alienation by allowing your loved one to openly participate in the decision-making process as much as they are able. They may verbally clue you in on personal needs and wants that you aren’t aware of, and this may help you determine which financial support you should steer towards. 

Read more at our blog post, Moving to Memory Care – Having the Conversation with Your Loved One

Finding Additional Support

Assisted living and memory care communities (such as us) often offer support to family members in navigating funding options for assisted living services and in choosing the right level of services.

Additional Resources:

The Area Agency on Aging in Texas is an organization that offers support services for individuals in need of dementia care services. If your loved one resides in Texas, this agency can connect with you with care programs and benefits. Please visit the agency website at Texas Area Agency on Aging

For additional information on funding and financial support for assisted living in all states , please visit

To apply for benefits in Texas, such as support services that help with daily needs and caregiving, visit: Your Texas Benefits

We want to help you with your questions and ease your mind about memory care for your loved one.

If are in the Round Rock, Texas area, and would like to schedule a family visit, or make an appointment, you may do so online, or call us at 512-399-5080.