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How Does the SSA Decide Who Qualifies for Disability Benefits?

By Kenton Koszdin Law Office on September 25, 2012 | In Social Security Disability

The Social Security Administration (SSA) determines each applicant’s eligibility for Social Security disability (SSD) benefits individually, based on that person’s work history, medical records, and other information. To make this determination, the SSA asks five basic questions about each applicant:

  • Are you working? Generally speaking, if you earn more than $1,010 per month, the SSA will not consider you “disabled.” If you are not working at all, or you are working but earning less than $1,010 per month, you may qualify.
  • Are you suffering a “severe” medical condition? To be “severe,” your condition must interfere with “basic work-related activities.” Often, these are basic daily living activities as well.
  • Is your condition on the SSA’s list of disabling conditions? If your condition is on the official list of medical conditions, the SSA will automatically consider it a “disabling” condition. If not, the SSA will examine your medical records to decide if your medical condition is as disabling as the conditions on the list.
  • Can you do the work you used to do? If your condition doesn’t interfere with doing the work you used to do, the SSA will not consider it “disabling” for benefits purposes.
  • Can you do other kinds of work? When deciding if you can transfer to other work, the SSA considers your age, education level, work experience, and skill set. If you can do other kinds of work, your claim for benefits will likely be denied.

Getting the Social Security disability benefits you need can be a difficult journey, but you don’t have to take it on alone. The skilled disability benefits lawyers in Van Nuys at the Kenton Koszdin Law Office strive to provide outstanding representation and assistance to every client we serve, helping you get the Social Security disability benefits you need. Call us today at (800) 438-7734 for a free, confidential consultation, and please visit our Case Results page for information on our past cases.

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