What Conditions Qualify for Disability?

For what medical conditions can you be approved for disability?

by Tim Moore. Free Case Evaluation for North Carolina Residents here.


What conditions qualify for disability?

This is actually one of the few good points that can be said about the SSA system that adjudicates Social Security Disability and ssi disability claims. You can be approved on the basis of any medical condition, regardless of whether or not that condition is specifically listed in the SSA impairment listing manual.

(Read you live in North Carolina)

Why is this? Simply because the focus of the Social Security Disability and SSI disability programs is on the claimant’s residual functional capacity which is defined as what a disability claimant is still able to do despite their medical, psychological, or psychiatric condition.

So, can you be approved for disability for depression? Yes, if your depression prevents you from working and earning the SGA amount (substantial gainful activity) for at least twelve months.

Can you be approved for disability for diabetes? Same answer. Can you be approved for disability for arthritis? Same answer. Can you be approved for disability for crohn’s disease? Same answer. Can you be approved for fibromyalgia? Same answer.

By now, I’m sure you get the point. Practically any medical condition can qualify for disability as long as it prevents you from being able to work sufficiently.

Important note: though some disability claimants will be approved for disability on the basis of medical conditions for which the eligibility requirements are listed in the impairment listing manual, most approvals will be rendered as a medical vocational allowance, which is an approval based on a consideration of a claimant’s current limitations (functional restrictions), age, educational level, and past work experience.

However, in all cases, disability approvals will be based strongly on the information found in a claimant’s medical records, as well as what the individual’s work history has to say about their skills and past work requirements. For this reason, to properly document the limiting effects of a claimant’s medical conditions, a person applying for disability should supply social security with 1. a full listing of their treatment sources, including dates of treatment, names of doctors, and the conditions with which they have been diagnosed, and 2. a very detailed list of all jobs held for the last 15 years.

Tip: It would be a good idea to indicate to your doctor what kind of problems you are having with daily activities in the hopes that the doctor may reflect this information in the treatment notes. This doctor may even be called upon by your representative to supply a medical source statement on your behalf. This type of form documents exactly how your disability limits your activities and, thus, makes you disabled.

At a hearing, proving that you have enough limitations to prevent you from returning to your past work and from doing any other kind of work will require looking at, even researching, your medical records AND work history. Judges regularly have vocational experts at hearings who are often not working in your best interests. This by itself is a prime reason for being represented at a hearing.