Originally Sent: 8/13/2013
|From the HSLDA e-lert service|
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Important Notice for Homeschool Students Receiving Social Security Benefits as a Survivor or Dependent
Dear Virginia Members and Friends:
We want to make you aware of an update in Social Security guidelines for continuing benefits to homeschool students using the religious exemption option.
Many homeschoolers in Virginia choose to use the religious exemption option to teach their children because they are religiously opposed to attendance at public school. Home School Legal Defense Association has worked with thousands of homeschoolers through the years to protect this important legal option.
Across the nation, HSLDA has also worked with hundreds of members who receive Social Security benefits to ensure that the Social Security Administration does not discriminate against them for homeschooling. Many times homeschoolers run into difficulty proving that their 18-year-old seniors are actually still students until they graduate, and HSLDA has successfully filed many administrative appeals to defend their right to homeschool.
Recently, the Social Security Administration’s Regional Chief Counsel instituted a policy that students in Virginia who are homeschooled under the religious exemption option are not considered to be full-time students as defined by federal law, ruling that the religious exemption is actually an exemption from the compulsory attendance law rather than a homeschool option. HSLDA is working to get this interpretation changed, but until the SSA reverses it, religiously exempt homeschoolers will not be considered students once they turn 18 years old, and not eligible for benefits under the current policy.
If your child is currently receiving Social Security benefits as a survivor or dependent, the student is nearing 18, and you are under religious exemption, please contact our office so that we can advise you how best to proceed. You may contact me by email at LegalG@hslda.org or by phone: 540-338-5600.
Darren A. Jones, Esq.
P.S. We greatly value you and your support—it is a privilege to serve you. Thank you for all you do for freedom! If you or someone you know is not a member of HSLDA, will you consider taking a moment today to join or recommend us? Your support enables us to defend individual families threatened by government officials and protect homeschooling freedom for all. Join now >>
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