Does My Disability Qualify?

No matter what disability or illness you suffer from, the impact on your life is very real. That should never be minimized or disrespected.

Unfortunately, however, the Social Security Administration does have to assess each claim according to the same objective criteria. Your eligibility for benefits depends heavily on two factors: the specific diagnosis you have and the extent to which your disability impairs your capacity to work.

Some Diagnoses Are Pre-Approved

The SSA keeps a list of medical conditions, organized by body systems, that automatically qualify as compensable disabilities because of their severity. If your condition is listed, you may be eligible for benefits as soon as the diagnosis is confirmed.

Fast-tracked approvals are especially important with conditions that are usually or always fatal, such as ALS and many types of cancer. The two fast-track processes used by the SSA are the "Compassionate Allowances" list and a computer-based predictive model called "Quick Disability Determination."

Some Diagnoses Require Additional Scrutiny

If your disability is not included in a database of pre-approved conditions, the SSA may try to determine if it is equal in severity to any conditions that are listed. If not, the agency will attempt to determine how much it interferes with your capacity to earn a living. Questions may include:

  • Are you currently working? If so, how often?
  • Can you still perform the work you were most recently employed to do?
  • If you cannot continue the same work, is there any other type of paid work that you can do?

How We Can Help

If your disability is not on any pre-approved list, it can be difficult to convincingly demonstrate why you deserve to receive SSDI benefits. An experienced lawyer can help you find, collect and organize all relevant medical documents and other evidence needed to show the full extent of your disability. Our firm has been advocating for disabled workers in California for years, and we are ready to advocate for you.

Contact Us For A Free Case Evaluation

The Law Office of Ronald M. Stein, Attorney at Law, is located in Stockton and serves clients throughout the Central Valley. To learn more about qualifying for disability benefits, contact our office at 209-751-4370, or fill out our online contact form.