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
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What conditions do they Award Disability Benefits for?
How to prove you are disabled
and win disability benefits
A person filing for disability can potentially be awarded on the basis of any condition. This is because the SSD and SSI programs do not focus on the disagnosis that a claimant has. Instead, attention is paid to the severity level of the individual's condition.
The essential question that will be asked on any disability case will be: "Is the person's condition severe enough to prevent them from working and earning a substantial and gainful income for at least one full year". If the condition is severe enough to make gainful work activity impossible and this situation has lasted for one year, or can be projected to last for one year, then the social security definition of disability will have been satisfied and the person may be approved for disability benefits.
How does the social security administration determine if a claimant's condition is severe enough to meet this definition of disability?
If the claimant is an adult, social security will review the medical records and work history to determine if their condition will allow them to return to work or perform some type of other work.
If the claimant is a child, social security will review the medical records and most likely the child's school records (if they are of school age) to determine if the child is capable of engaging in age-appropriate activities, such as staying on pace with their peers.
The disability determination process used by SSA is designed to award disability benefits in two separate fashions. Both will involve meeting all the requirements of the social security definition of disability. The first is through the possibility of satisfying a listing in the SSA blue book, a reference source that in printed format is titled "Disability Evaluation under Social Security".
Most claims that are approved are not approved by satisfying the requirements of a listing. This is because the listing requirements tend to be very specific and demanding and meeting a listing requires that an individual's medical records contain very specific qualifying information.
Moreover, not all conditions are listed in the social security list of impairments. fibromyalgia and carpal tunnel syndrome are two very commonly cited impairments on disability applications and appeals and neither receives consideration in the listing manual.
The conditions that are listed are organized under the following body systems:
How, then, do most claimants get approved for disability? Most claimants are awarded on the basis of a medical vocational allowance.
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