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How to file for disability, Filing for SSI
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Can a Specific Medical Problem get you Approved for Disability in Illinois?



 
When I first heard of fast tracking certain Social Security Disability and SSI disability cases based on claimants having specific impairments, I was very skeptical. After all, how can you gauge the severity of any medical condition without first gathering, reading, and evaluating a disability claimant's medical records?

Think about it. Even for individuals who have just suffered a heart attack or a stroke, there is no automatic approval for SSD or SSI, just as there is no award for temporary disability through the social security administration. In all cases, a claimant has always been required to meet the social security definition of disability, in all its aspects.

In the case of stroke and heart attack, claimants have been required to prove (via their medical evidence) that their residual functional capacity (remaining ability to engage in work activity), months after the event, is insufficient to allow them to engage in work that delivers a sustainable wage.

All of this may be changing, however. The Compassionate Allowance Initiative would allow the social security administration to identify certain cases in which specific impairments are present. When present, a confirmed diagnosis of the impairment would lead to a claimant being approved for disability in either the Social Security Disability or SSI program (or in both programs if the claim is concurrent).

What conditions will the compassionate allowance initiative include? According to one source, it may include acute leukemia and pancreatic cancer.

Will this type of program really save claimants a significant amount of time in the processing of their cases? At the initial claim level (the disability application level), this is a bit debatable. After all, a disability examiner would still be required to obtain the basic medical evidence that confirms the alleged impairment. And it is the process of gathering records that typically delays a case.

However, cases that are approved in Illinois at the initial claim level via this program would immediately be taken out of the loop of having to go through the reconsideration appeal process and then the disability hearing appeal process, two components of the system that, taken together, often consume over two years of time (time which most applicants for disability cannot afford and for whom the unreasonable wait is financially devastating).








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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.