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What Does Social Security Consider A Disability?

By Kenton Koszdin on September 26, 2018 | In Disability Insurance

What Does Social Security Consider A Disability?

One of the main problems that people run into when applying for a disability benefit through Social Security is the definition of qualifying disabilities. There is a list of conditions the SSA uses to process disability claims, which largely dictates who is entitled to benefits and who is not. However, having a diagnosis for a listed disability is not enough on its own to meet SSA requirements – you must also demonstrate that your disability prevents you from carrying out paid work.

What Medical Conditions Are Listed?

The list of medical conditions is subject to change, so always check the official SSA website for the most up-to-date list. Additionally, if your condition is not on the list it does not mean you are automatically disqualified from SSDI benefit. The SSA will look at other factors, including how your condition impacts your ability to work in determining your entitlement to benefits.

Medical Conditions

You can expect to see potentially impactful conditions consistently listed as qualifying disabilities. These conditions may include musculoskeletal problems, heart and lung conditions, respiratory illnesses, skin conditions, digestive, kidney and liver conditions, and cancer. The severity of your condition and how it affects your ability to work is then considered in processing any application for a disability benefit.

Neurological and mental disorders are also listed. Conditions such as multiple sclerosis, cerebral palsy, Parkinson’s disease and epilepsy may qualify you for benefits. The SSA also processes applications for people suffering from conditions such as depression and anxiety, schizophrenia and PTSD. If you or the person for whom you are applying is autistic or has learning difficulties, benefits are considered based on the severity of the condition and whether it impacts the person’s ability to work.

Equaling a Disability Listing

As previously mentioned, your condition does not necessarily need to be directly referenced in the official Social Security listing. In the case of applicants who suffer from conditions that are not listed, the decision-maker will next look to the qualifying criteria for disability benefits. For example, if you suffer from a condition that results in much the same restrictions as rheumatoid arthritis, you may still qualify for disability benefit.

Furthermore, the limitations you face are often of most importance when considering a claim. It is essential that you seek medical diagnosis and treatment from a qualified provider in order to support your case. Proving how you are limited in your daily activities will strengthen your case and increase the likelihood of Social Security approving your application for disability benefit. It is for this reason that you should ensure the claims made in your application are backed up by medical evidence and statements from your doctors or therapists.

If you are struggling to complete your forms for Social Security disability benefits, reach out to the Kenton Koszdin Law Office. Our legal team can help you understand the forms and correspondence you receive from Social Security. Call today for your initial consultation.

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