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Why You Should Get an IHSS Advocate for Your Child with Special Needs

Why You Should Get an IHSS Advocate for Your Child with Special Needs

If you have a child with a disability, you already feel the stress of having to take care of her health, educational and emotional needs. This doesn’t even include having to cope with a drastically lowered income because of reduced work hours or having to pay someone else for childcare.

What Is In-Home Supportive Services (IHSS)?

In-Home Supportive Services provide crucial benefits for families of children with developmental disabilities. Unfortunately, applying for and receiving these benefits are notoriously difficult and many families give up after encountering road block after road block. At American Advocacy Group, our objective is to help you through the application process and get you the assistance you deserve.

IHSS and Protective Supervision Benefits

IHSS is a California government program that provides financial support for in-home caretakers of children with developmental disabilities including autism. While a variety of benefits are available, the most important for families of children with special needs is “Protective Supervision.” When you are approved for Protective Supervision, you will receive an hourly wage to stay home and care for your child. This wage is exempt from federal income taxes.

Few things can make such a big difference in the lives of a family as the ability to give your special needs child the full care he or she deserves, without endangering your family finances. If your child has been diagnosed with ASD or another development disability, you are eligible for Protective Supervision. But the application process can be confusing, and at present only 10% of eligible families receive this credit.

How an IHSS Advocate Helps

Look into getting an advocate. An advocate is a person who supports another person. This professional has knowledge and expertise concerning the laws, courts, and special education and their applicable federal and state regulations and works within the bounds of these laws. When you find an advocate, he or she will inform you, as the parent, of your child’s rights and will help your family in negotiating to maximize your financial benefits as well as resolving disputes with the school district. This helps you secure the best possible personal and educational success and appropriate government benefits and educational services for your child with special needs.

The IHSS application process generally involves a written application, an in-home interview with a social worker, and medical records. Once approved, there will be ongoing assessments. An IHSS advocate can assist at every stage of this process whether you are a first-time applicant or your application has been denied.

For first time applicants IHSS advocates will:

  • Determine if you are eligible
  • Create a plan with you to maximize your benefits
  • Perform all necessary research and complete all paperwork
  • Obtain any required medical records
  • Assist you through the interview and all processing

If you applied for IHSS benefits and were rejected, an advocate will:

  • Review your case with you
  • Check all records and research the reason for your rejection
  • Assist you in appealing your application
  • Represent you at hearings

If you feel overwhelmed and you need help, please contact us.

American Advocacy Group is on the front lines every day, making positive change happen for people diagnosed with autism, Down syndrome and a range of diagnoses across the continuum. As a leading advocate for all people with intellectual and developmental disabilities and their families, and the premier provider of the support and services people want and need, we understand the system and know how to take action in regard to your best interests.


Dial (877) 762-0702 or email us at [email protected].


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