Social Security Disability Definitions
Social Security Disability and SSI Overview
The Requirements for Disability
Social Security Disability and SSI Applications
Tips and Advice for Disability Claims
How long does Disability take?
Common Mistakes after Receiving a Disability Denial
Disability Denials and Filing Appeals
Social Security Mental Disability Benefits
Disability Benefits offered through Social Security
Benefits through SSI disability
Disability Benefits for Children
Disability Qualifications and How to Qualify
Social Security Disability and Working
Winning your Disability Benefits
Social Security Back Pay and the disability award notice
Disability Lawyers and Hiring an Attorney
Social Security Disability SSI List of Conditions
What is considered a Disabling condition by Social Security?
Social Security Disability SSI and Medical Evidence
Filing for Disability Benefits
Eligibility for Disability Benefits
SSDRC authored by Tim Moore
Ask a question, get an answer
How does Social Security consider lupus as a disability?
How to prove you are disabled
and win disability benefits
Social Security considers lupus as it would consider any other medical or mental impairment. By this we mean that both Social Security disability and SSI disability are based on an individualís ability, or inability, to perform substantial gainful activity, or SGA. This is essentially work activity that earns a certain minimal amount of earnings which SSA considers to be self-supporting.
Eligiblity for disability benefits is not simply, as is often believed to be the case, based upon an individual's diagnosed physical or mental conditions. In other words, being diagnosed with a specific condition will not, in and of itself, result in a disability award. An allowance, or approval for disability, will depend upon the severity of the claimant's symptoms, which can only be proven through information obtained from a claimant's medical records.
These records, of course, may include a medical source statement--also known as a residual functional capacity statement--from a claimant's treating physician. Note: Treating physicians are defined as physicians with whom a claimant has a history of receiving treatment, to the extent that the physician would be qualified to comment as to the claimant's prognosis and physical or mental limitations.
Many conditions, including lupus, are given consideration in the disability evaluation handbook (usually referred to by judges, attorneys, and disablity examiners as the "blue blook" since the published paper version has a blue cover, and occasionally also referred to as the social security disability list of impairments).
Currently, Social Security evaluates lupus by establishing if there is a diagnosis of lupus with one of the following joint: muscle, respiratory, or ocular (eye) involvement. Not surprisingly, only a small majority of cases are aproved on the basis of meeting, or equaling, the requirements of the listing for lupus.
Due to the nature of lupus (exacerbations and healthier periods), it is difficult to gain an allowance at the initial or reconsideration levels of the Social Security disability process, unless a case is extremely severe.
For this reason, many individuals with lupus must usually appeal their claims, and in following the appeal process this will usually lead to an administrative law judge disability hearing before an allowance for Social Security disability, or SSI disability, benefits is granted.
The following pages describe the social security administration's disability evaluation system, including including appeals, and how Lupus cases are evaluated specifically:
Social Security Disability SSI and Filing based on Lupus
Return to: Social Security Disability Resource Center, or read answers to Questions
Information on the following topics can be found here: Social Security Disability Questions
Social Security Disability SSI decisions | The Disability Decision Process and What gets taken into Consideration | Getting Denied for Disability Benefits | Questions about Social Security Disability Approvals and Being Approved | Social Security Disability Hearings | Social Security Medical Examinations | Social Security SSI Doctors | Social Security Disability Representation | Social Security Disability SSI Reviews