What Chronic Back Conditions Qualify Automatically For Disability
The SSA maintains a listing of impairments that can automatically qualify for disability. If your condition matches the requirements of any of the following listings, you could qualify automatically for disability. To learn about the criteria for each listing read our articles on the following types of back problems:
Learn What To Look For And When To Seek Help
by Health WriterGettyImages/Charday Penn
It may seem like a big leap to go from skin issues related to psoriasis to joint pain that can accompany psoriatic arthritis . We get it. But when youre living with psoriasis, its really important to understand that both conditions are related to the same overactive immune system, and their close relationship means if you have one, you are more vulnerable to developing the other. Here, experts explain exactly how the diseases are linked, some common early signs of psoriatic arthritis that people with psoriasis should be aware of, and what you should do if you suspect you may be developing PsA.
Building Your Arthritis Ssdi/ssi Claim
Your SSDI or SSI claim for arthritis will only be approved if the SSA and the Pennsylvania Bureau of Disability Determination find enough evidence that you have a disabling condition. You and your doctor will need to provide detailed medical records, documents, and evidence to show that you have arthritis and that it is impacting your ability to work.
At Handler, Henning & Rosenberg LLC, our goal is to build clear and compelling Social Security disability claims that offer our clients the best opportunity at an approval. We can also handle requests for reconsideration or review, as well as file appeals in court. In all of these cases, we will be working to prove that your condition qualifies you for benefits. Fortunately, our Pennsylvania disability lawyers have extensive experience and the resources to make a difference in even the most complex arthritis claims.
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How To Qualify For Benefits If You Do Not Meet The Requirements In The Listing Of Impairments
If you do not meet the specific requirements of an individual listing, then the SSA will evaluate your eligibility differently. Specifically, the agency will be looking at your residual functional capacity. In other words, how much activity and work you are still able to do despite your disability will be evaluated. If your functional limitations keep you from being able to work any job, then you may qualify for Social Security disability benefits.
Should You Hire A Lawyer
As Ive said, not all cases of arthritis will qualify for disability benefits. If you want to increase your chances of getting disability for arthritis, hiring a lawyer can definitely help.
An experienced disability and workers compensation lawyer like Victor Malca has dealt with thousands of disability claims before. He knows what the SSA wants to see so he can guide you on what documents and medical evidence to prepare. He can also help you answer the disability forms and questionnaires properly to ensure that your claim gets approved at the initial stage. Call us now for a free consultation.
VICTOR MALCA Florida Workers Compensation & Social Security Disability Attorney
Victor Malca P.A. has over 27 years of litigation experience in Workers Compensation and Social Security Disability lawsuits. His experience and continued success when fighting for his clients puts him among the most trusted workers compensation attorneys in Florida. He specializes in representing injured workers on compensation benefit cases and disabled individuals claiming lost social security disability benefits.
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How To Prove Your Case
When applying for Social Security Disability benefits, you need to understand that the Social Security Administration focuses on one thing. The one focus is how your illness affects your ability to work and produce a substantial income.
Considering applying for Social Security disability benefits but not sure how much youll earn per month? Our Social Security Disability Calculator can help you determine how much youll receive from the SSA before you file for disability.
If you cannot work and produce an income due to arthritis, then you may very well qualify for Social Security Disability benefits. The challenge, however, is to prove that your arthritis condition does indeed prevent you from working.
The first thing you need to know is the specific type of arthritis you have. If you have rheumatoid arthritis, you will need to prove that you experience persistent pain and swelling and that your joint movement is limited due to the arthritis.
If you are suffering from osteoarthritis, you will need to prove that your arthritis limits your ability to move your arms and hands and that you experience significant problems with standing or walking.
Can I Still Drive If I Have Arthritis
If your arthritis affects your ability to drive, you must let the DVLA know. This doesnt mean that you will have to stop driving, but its a legal obligation for you to declare certain conditions to the DVLA.
Youll also have to let your insurance company know, but they arent allowed to charge you any more because of your condition. If you have an accident you havent declared a health condition, your insurance might not cover you.
Our information guide In the Driving Seat has more information about driving with health conditions and making adaptations to your car.
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Adhere To Your Physician’s Treatment Plan
We hope you’re already doing this for your own health’s sake, but the SSA needs to see that you’re following medical advice. It demonstrates that you’ve been making an effort to improve.
If your claim is denied, you normally have 60 days from the day you are notified of the decision to appeal. The notice letter will specify which of the four stages of appeal you should pursue: reconsideration, a hearing by an administrative law judge, Appeals Council review, or Federal Court review.
At What Point Does The Government Consider Ra A Disability
The Social Security Administration considers RA a disability if a person meets the following eligibility criteria:
- the persons condition is so severe that they will need to be out of work for 12 months or more
- the person has gained enough work credits to qualify for disability benefits
The SSA calculates work credits based on the total amount a person earns each year. According to the SSA, in 2021, a person can receive one credit for every $1,470 of earned income for a maximum of four credits per year.
Though the amount needed per credit often increases each year, a person can accumulate credits at different points in their life. They will not disappear if a person stops working for several years.
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Consult A Disability Attorney Or Advocate
Because the rules and regulations governing Social Security disability benefits have become increasingly complex over the years. Thus, it makes sense to retain the services of an attorney or skilled advocate to assist you with your application and throughout the process.
Local attorneys and advocates are also typically familiar with the system’s judges and adjudicators, which can significantly increase your chances of getting your claim accepted.
Help Strengthen Your Disability Case With A Social Worker
For help finding a qualified social worker, the National Association of Social Workers offers its , where you can find a social worker to help with various concerns, says Coleman. For more details about applying for disability benefits, download the PDF brochure from the Social Security Administration, which details the procedure.
Dont let the prospect of a difficult process scare you away from filing an initial application or appealing a denied one.
There is so much stigma in the world for individuals living with chronic illness, says Boles. Patients are paying into these benefits and have a right to access them. If patients cant work, they shouldnt be risking worsening their health and causing more damage to themselves physically and mentally if they continue to work. Its important for people to know they have a right to these benefits.
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What Medical Conditions Qualify For Short
Your medical condition must prevent you from doing your regular job duties to qualify for short-term disability. You must show how the symptoms or impairments from your medical condition interfere with your ability to perform your job duties.
To do this, you need to have an official list of your job duties. Then you can get your doctor to review the list of responsibilities and confirm that you cannot perform the majority of them because of your medical condition.
Most short-term disability plans require you to be continuously disabled for seven days or so before you can qualify for benefits. This is called the waiting/elimination period.
The following is an example of typical wording of the disability requirement for a short-term disability plan. Please note this is only an example, the exact wording is different for each plan:
An employee is entitled to payment of a short-term disability benefit if that employee proves that:
- the employee became totally disabled while covered
- the total disability has continued beyoned the elimintation period
- the employee has been following appropriate treatment for the disabling condition
An employee will be considered totally disabled while the employee is continuously unable due to an illness to do the essential duties of the employees own occupation in any setting.
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What Are The Symptoms Of Arthritis
Symptoms of arthritis include pain and stiffness in your joints, inflammation around the joints and limited joint movement. There are many different types of arthritis, each with different symptoms.
Its normal to experience aches and pains, especially if youve carried out strenuous activity. But if your symptoms are unexplained, dont go away within a few days or if they are impacting your day-to-day life, you should visit your doctor.
Applying For Disability Benefits
Although advanced stages of arthritis in the spine count as a qualifying condition, you may need assistance proving your disabled status to the Social Security Administration. If you can’t meet the SSA’s arthritis listing in the Blue Book, you’ll have to rely on an RFC analysis to qualify for payments. If you are disabled because of arthritis in the spine, you will want to consider applying for SSDI. You can start the process today.
What If My Arthritis Doesnt Meet Any Of The Listings
You can still be approved for disability even if your arthritis doesnt meet an official SSA impairment listing, though it will be more difficult. If the SSA decides that your arthritis doesnt meet a listing, the agency must decide whether youre able to do your past work, or any other work, despite the symptoms of your arthritis.
The SSA will consider your age, education, past work experience, and impact of your arthritis symptoms in deciding whether you can be expected to work. For this reason, its easier for older and less educated applicants to win a claim for disability.
To inform the SSA about how your arthritis impacts your life and your ability to work, you should ask your doctor to fill out a Residual Functional Capacity form. An RFC will discuss how your ability to perform work-related activities like sitting, standing, walking, pushing, pulling, feeling, and lifting is limited as a result of your arthritis. For example, if your arthritis has caused malformation, swelling, and pain in your fingers and wrists, your RFC should explain that you are unable to type, use a pen, or perform other work that requires the use of your hands and fingers. This limitation alone would prevent you from doing most work.
If the SSA determines that, in light of these restrictions from your arthritis, there is no work you can perform, your claim will be approved.
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What Kinds Of Arthritis Qualify You For Disability Benefits
There are more than 100 different types of arthritis and related conditions, and it is the leading cause of disability in America. According to the Arthritis Foundation, more than 50 million adults and 300,000 children have a form of arthritis.
Arthritis, an informal way of referring to joint pain or joint disease, is generally caused by obesity, old age, fractures in the bones, or bacterial and viral infections. The most common types of arthritis include:
- Degenerative arthritis: when the cartilage cushioning bones begins to wear away.
- Inflammatory arthritis: when the immune system goes array and attacks healthy joint with uncontrolled inflammation .
- Infectious arthritis: when a virus or fungus enters the joint and triggers inflammation.
- Metabolic arthritis: a buildup of uric acid in the bodys joint, resulting in gout.
Unfortunately, any type of arthritis can limit your ability to perform everyday activities due to the swelling and pain of the joints, but the Social Security Administration views them all differently.
Who Qualifies For Disability Benefits
For an employee seeking short- or long-term disability benefits from an employer, the process is typically to fill out paperwork, including relevant medical paperwork, that clearly shows why benefits are needed, says Boles. With a group plan, usually the patient will receive a percentage of what their individual paycheck is. There could be a waiting period before a person could access benefits, and it can get tricky with preexisting treatments, she says.
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For those without a group plan through an employer, there is Social Security Disability Insurance , a program offered by the . Per the agency’s website, people can apply for SSDI if they are 18 or older, arent already receiving Social Security benefits, cant work because of a medical condition that is expected to last at least 12 months or result in death, and havent already been denied.
According to Boles, in terms of approval for SSDI, they’ve learned that it is more about proving that individuals can’t do any job, not simply their own current job. She says, Its more, I cant do any work whatsoever.
The program depends on a persons earning history and whether they paid Social Security benefits through taxes, Boles adds. For people who are self-employed, clarify with the Social Security Administration if that work history qualifies.
What Will You Need To Qualify For Ra Disability Benefits
First, to receive Social Security Administration disability benefits, you will need to obtain a certificate from the government for your disability due to rheumatoid arthritis . For this certificate, your RA symptoms should be so severe that they must significantly limit your ability to do basic work, such as lifting, walking and even standing. Additionally, your condition has to affect your life so much that you cant perform your job, as well as any other job.
To qualify for disability benefits, your RA has to be severe enough to keep you out of work for at least 12 months, and you must also have enough work credits.
The entire process will need documentation from your rheumatologist in the form of the following:
Receiving Disability Benefits For Rheumatoid Arthritis And Osteoarthritis
If you have a physical impairment that limits your ability to perform your daily tasks and work to earn a living, you may qualify for Social Security disability benefits. Rheumatoid arthritis or osteoarthritis and disability benefits are certainly possible if the condition prevents you from working. The SSA has strict medical requirements for physical and mental impairments along with work history requirements and resources and income requirements.
The SSA uses an impairment listing guide to help determine whether you will qualify for disability benefits. Obtaining these benefits may not be as straightforward or simple as you imagine. It can be extremely helpful to speak to a knowledgeable Social Security disability attorney from Carmichael Law Group, LLC. Our firm focuses exclusively on SSDI. Since SSDI is a nationwide program, we can help you no matter where you live. Let us use our experience, knowledge, and skills to help you during this difficult time.
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Common Causes Of Service
Back arthritis is a common cause of disability resulting in VA benefits. Arthritis can be brought on by a traumatic injury, and this can be one way that back arthritis counts as a service-related injury.
Many service members, on the other hand, do not necessarily have a single traumatic injury to point to as the cause of their back arthritis. Instead, it is the general wear and tear on the body from joint overuse during service that makes the back arthritis service-related.
How Severe Does Arthritis Need To Be To Qualify For Ssdi/ssi
Inflammatory arthritis is included in the Listing of Impairments maintained by the Social Security Administration . This list includes all physical and mental conditions that qualify for Social Security.
For arthritis, the SSA specifically mentions four different qualifying factors:
- Persistent major joint swelling or deformity
- Joint and organ system inflammation or deformity
- Inflammation or deformity of the spine and/or surrounding organs
- Repeated occurrences of inflammatory arthritis that limit your daily life and functioning
Those requirements are meant to automatically qualify a person for SSDI or SSI, but any person with arthritis may be eligible if his or her condition is so severe that:
- He/she cannot perform the work he/she once did
- He/she cannot learn a new trade or perform any other work
- The condition is expected to last at least 12 months
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