How to file for disability, Filing for SSI
Disability Requirements, Disability Status
How long is the wait?, Disability Application
The Social Security List of Impairments
Qualifying for Disability, Mental Disability
Disability Lawyer Info, Disability Back Pay

How hard is it to get on disability without being on medication?

The Social Security Disability definition mentions nothing about medication. And, in fact, potentially any individual who decides to file for disability can be approved for disability.

Having said that, though, there are various conditions for which it is important to be on prescribed medication. If you have epilepsy or seizure disorder, the social security administration, when it reviews your disability claim, will be interested in ascertaining your residual functional capacity, after the effects of prescribed medication.

And, of course, there are other conditions for which medication plays a substantial role. Asthma cases, for instance. If you have asthma, a disability examiner or disability judge (depending on what level your ssd or ssi claim is at in the system) will be interested in how well your condition is controlled despite the use of prescribed medication such as steroids and inhalants. What if you have asthma and have not been prescribed medication? Well, this fact alone may signal to an adjudicator the severity of your condition.

And, of course, there is the issue of medical compliance. What do I mean by this? What I mean is that a disability examiner or disability judge may base their disability decision, to some extent, on whether or not a claimant has taken the medication that has been prescribed to them. For individuals who have been prescribed medication and have not taken it, the reason is this: A. how can a person's ability to work be determined if their true functional capacity is unknown and B. how can social security determine a person's true functional capacity if they are not taking the medication that their doctor has prescribed for them.

This argument is a logical and valid one. Unfortunately, it does tend to penalize fairly severely those disability applicants who no longer have health insurance, cannot afford to be seen by a doctor, and do not have access to a free clinic that provides medication.

Can you get disability from the Social Security Disability or SSI program without being on medication? Yes, you can. However, depending on your particular condition, it may be much harder to demonstrate that you qualify for disability if medication has been prescribed and you are not taking it (unfortunately, regardless of the reason).

Essential Questions

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Previously answered questions regarding SSD and SSI

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Related pages:

Social Security Disability hearing decision time
Permanent disability benefits
Applying for Disability - How long does it take
Applying for disability, medical conditions
How do you Apply for SSI?
Disability requirements and how to file in Florida
What are the Application Requirements For SSI Disability?
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These pages provide answers to basic questions about pursuing disability benefits

What Mental Problems Qualify for Disability?
Disability for a mental condition
Tips for Filing for disability
Financial Help Filing For Disability
Checklist for filing for disability, SSI or SSD
Qualifying for disability benefits, how to qualify for SSD or SSI
Filing a disability application: the steps
Disability award notice, how long it takes to get benefits
How to Apply for Disability - Where do I go?
What makes you eligible to get disability?
How to check my disability claim status?
Can a disability attorney speed up a disability case?
SSI disability Award Letter
How long to get approved for disability?
How to apply for disability benefits
How long does disability back pay take?
What are qualifications for getting disability?
What medical conditions can you file disability for?
Disability Lawyer help questions
Social Security Attorneys, Disability Representatives

For the sake of clarity, SSDRC.com is not the Social Security Administration, nor is it associated or affiliated with SSA. This site is a personal, private website that is published, edited, and maintained by former caseworker and former disability claims examiner, Tim Moore, who was interviewed by the New York Times on the topic of Social Security Disability and SSI benefits in an article entitled "The Disability Mess" and also by the Los Angeles Times on the subject of political attempts to weaken the Social Security Disability system.

The goal of the site is to provide information about how Social Security Disability and SSI work, the idea being that qualified information may help claimants pursue their claims and appeals, potentially avoiding time-consuming mistakes. If you find the information on this site helpful and believe it would be helpful to others, feel free to share links to its homepage or other pages on website resource pages, blogs, or social media. Copying of this material, however, is prohibited.

To learn more about the author, please visit the SSDRC.com homepage and view the "about this site" link near the bottom of the page.