Mothers of Autistic Children Often Earn Less in Massachusetts, Nationwide

April 6th, 2012

According to a recent report, families in the United States that include autistic children earn almost $18,000 per year less than those with children who develop normally. Oftentimes, an autistic child’s mother will leave the workforce or work fewer hours in order to provide additional care. In fact, mothers with autistic children worked an average of seven fewer hours per week, had an income that was less than half of mothers with normally developing children, and were six percent more likely to be unemployed. The report also found that fathers generally work the same number of hours regardless of their child’s developmental path.

In the United States, autism affects approximately one in every 110 children and kids are increasingly being diagnosed with the disorder throughout the nation. The disorder can range from a mild, high-functioning case to severe mental retardation and disability. In some cases, the costs of an autistic individual’s care can reach as high as $3.2 million over the course of a lifetime.

According to David Mandell, Associate Director at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia’s Center for Autism Research, because the needs of autistic children tend to fall into multiple medical service areas, their mothers often leave the workforce in order to ensure they are well cared for. Mandell also said he believes an autistic child’s mother often becomes a sort of advocate and case manager for her child. Although the research report could not rule out other factors that may have contributed to lower household income rates for families with autistic children, Mandell stated the income gap might not exist if more services were in place to effectively care for autistic children. He believes appropriate care would lessen a family’s burden.

Many do not realize social security benefits are not just available to our nation’s retired population. Federal Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) is designed to assist hurt individuals who are unable to return to work for at least one year. SSDI or Supplemental Social Security Insurance benefits may also be available to the parents of a disabled child. If you have questions, a capable Boston social security disability attorney can explain the application process to you.

If you are having a hard time making ends meet due to a disability, contact the law firm of Pulgini & Norton, LLP today. Our hardworking Quincy social security disability lawyers know what is required to file a claim for social security disability benefits and can help you navigate the application process. If you were denied social security benefits in the past, our lawyers will work diligently on your case throughout the appeals process. Pulgini & Norton represents disabled clients throughout the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. To speak with a dedicated and experienced attorney regarding your social security disability claim, call Pulgini & Norton at 781-843-2200. You may also contact the law firm through our website.

Additional Resources:

Moms of autistic children work less, earn less , by Frederik Joelving, Reuters Health