Method and apparatus for generating codewords with variable length and redundancy from a single Low-Density Parity-Check (LDPC) code with variable length input words. A mother code for encoding data words is generated based on a parity-check matrix, wherein the mother code is adjusted to reflect the size of the data word to be encoded. A generator matrix applies the mother code to data words to produce codewords for transmission. In one embodiment, a reduction criteria is determined and the size of the generator matrix reduced in response. The corresponding parity-check matrix is applied at the receiver for decoding the received codeword.