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What Is SSA’s Definition of Disability?

If you are or have recently become disabled, you may wonder if you are eligible for assistance through the Social Security Administration (SSA). The SSA has a specific list of qualifying conditions for disability benefits through its Blue Book. In the Blue Book, there are several different categories of disabilities that warrant SSDI benefits, including but not limited to:

  • Special senses and speech disorders
  • Mental disorders
  • Digestive disorders
  • Skin disorders
  • Types of cancer
  • Immune system disorders
  • Cardiovascular system disorders

To confirm that your condition meets the Blue Book’s criteria, it is in your best interest to consult with a Social Security Disability attorney to help determine your best chance at receiving disability benefits. Many attorneys offer no cost initial consultations to review your case and determine pre-eligibility.

Do I Qualify for Disability Benefits?

In order to qualify for Social Security Disability Insurance, you must have a condition that makes you unable to perform substantial gainful activity, typically through employment, to support yourself. You could also have a condition that could end in death without assistance, such as terminal cancer. In addition, your disability or impairment must prevent you from participating in a major life activity, which consists of the use of a major bodily function including but not limited to the immune system, normal cell growth, digestive, bowel, bladder, neurological, brain, respiratory, circulatory, endocrine, and reproductive functions.

Major life activities also extends to the caring and maintenance of oneself. This includes vital, self-sustaining activities such as caring for oneself, performing manual tasks, seeing, hearing, eating, sleeping, walking, standing, lifting, bending, speaking, breathing, learning, reading, concentrating, thinking, and communicating.

According to the SSA, you would be deemed eligible for disability benefits if you have previously worked for an employer covered by Social Security, and the following statements apply to you:

  • ​​You cannot do work that you did before because of your medical condition.
  • You cannot adjust to other work because of your medical condition.
  • Your disability has lasted or is expected to last for at least one year, or to result in death.

For some workers who have reached age 50, age 55, or age 60, there could be even less requirements to prove your case. The best thing is for you to do is to consult with an attorney for a free consultation.

Additionally, you must have experienced the above conditions for longer than 12 months, to the point where you can no longer take care of or support yourself alone. If your disability is deemed as partial or temporary, you are not eligible to receive benefits.

Reputable Social Security Disability Attorneys Serving Portland, OR

The process of applying for and attaining Social Security Disability benefits can make you feel confused and uneasy — and it is incredibly common to have your first application rejected, regardless of legitimacy. If you have a qualifying disability or impairment, then it is your right to receive assistance from the Social Security Administration. Hiring a knowledgeable Social Security Disability lawyer is crucial for a stress-free claims process. If you or a loved one are or have recently become disabled in Portland, Oregon, contact the attorneys at Kerr, Robichaux & Carroll for a free legal consultation by submitting a form on our website or calling our office toll-free at 503-255-9092 today.

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