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

You can apply for disability on the basis of any mental condition

You can apply for Social Security Disability and/or Supplemental Security Income disability (SSI) if you have a mental condition. Social Security does not differentiate between physical and mental conditions. You may apply for disability on the basis of any mental condition, including but certainly not limited to the following: depression, anxiety, panic attacks, bipolar disorder, personality disorder, memory loss, or any other type of cognitive or mood disorder.

Social Security uses the same five-step sequential disability evaluation process to determine disability eligibility for physical and mental impairments.

The first step of this evaluation process is an evaluation of your work activity. If you are working, Social Security must evaluate whether or not you are performing SGA. Substantial gainful activity, or SGA, is work activity at a level that social security considers self-supporting.

If you are working and earning over the monthly SGA monthly limit amount, it does not matter how severe your mental condition is--your disability claim will be denied.

If you are not performing SGA, they move to the second step. The second step determines if you have a severe medically determinable mental impairment (or physical impairment) and if your mental condition has lasted or is expected to last twelve continuous months.

Social Security uses treatment records from psychiatrists, psychologists, hospitals, physicians, or any other kind of medical professional to document the existence and severity of your mental condition.

If you have a severe mental condition, the disability examiner moves to the third step. The third step determines whether or not your mental condition meets or equals the severity requirements of an impairment listing. You may be approved for disability benefits at this step. If not, your ability to perform any of your past work (fourth step) and your ability to do other kinds of work (fifth step) has to be evaluated.

At this point, Social Security may consider your age, education, residual functional capacity (what you are able to do despite the limitations of your disabling condition), and the transferability of your job skills. If they determine that you cannot do any of your past work or any other kind of work due to the limitations of your mental condition, you may be approved for disability benefits through a medical vocational allowance.

Essential Questions

What is the Social Security Disability SSI list of impairments?

Can you work while getting or applying for Disability?

How Often Does Social Security Approve Disability The First Time You Apply?

Tips for getting Social Security Disability or SSI benefits approved

What medical conditions will get you approved for disability?

What kind of Mental Problems Qualify for Disability?

Receiving a Disability Award Letter

Conditions Social Security will recognize as a disability

Previously answered questions regarding SSD and SSI

Applying for disability in your state

Most popular topics on SSDRC.com

Social Security Disability SSI Questions

The listings, list of disabling impairments

Can a mental illness qualify you for disability?

Disability Lawyers prevent unnecessary denials

How much Social Security Disability SSI back pay?

How to apply for disability for a child or children

Filing a Social Security Disability SSI application

Filing for disability - when to file

How to apply for disability - where to apply

Qualifications for disability benefits

How to Prove you are disabled and Win your Disability Benefits

Qualifying for Disability - The Process

How to get disability for depression

Getting disability for fibromyalgia

SSI disability for children with ADHD

What is the Application Process for Social Security Disability and SSI?

Common Mistakes to avoid after being denied for Disability

Social Security Disability SSI Exam tips

More Social Security Disability SSI Questions

Social Security Disability SSI definitions

What makes you eligible for Social Security Disability or SSI?

New and featured pages on SSDRC.com

Who can help me file for disability?

Related pages:

What is considered a Disabling medical condition by Social Security?
Can you File for Disability for more than one Condition?
How Disabling Does A Condition Have To Be For Social Security Disability, SSDI Benefits?
Receiving Benefits - Your Medical Condition and Social Security Disability or SSI
What Conditions Qualify For Social Security Disability?
Receiving disability for a mental condition in North Carolina
What condition or conditions qualifies for disability in North Carolina?
Social Security Disability Approvals - Medical Conditions and Getting Approved
Court and a Lawyer to get approved for disability
Will my disability be stopped if I work?
Getting disability approved in Florida
Getting a Disability Lawyer in Florida
Qualifying for SSDI in Florida

These pages answer some of the most basic questions for individuals who are considering filing a claim.

Can you get temporary Social Security Disability or SSI benefits?

Permanent Social Security Disability

What is the difference between Social Security Disability and SSI?

Who is eligible for SSI disability?

Can I Be Eligible For SSI And Social Security Disability At The Same Time?

What makes a person eligible to receive disability benefits?

Applying for Disability - How long does it take to get Social Security Disability or SSI benefits?

What happens if I file a disability application and it is denied by a disability examiner or Judge?

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.