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Social Security Impairments

Qualifying Impairments

If you are disabled and cannot work, you may be entitled to receive benefits from the Social Security Administration (SSA). However, not every injury or medical condition is deemed severe enough to make you eligible for benefits. The social security administration has outlined specific requirements that must be met, including that your condition must last for a year, be expected to last a year, or be fatal. The SSA also has detailed guidelines on the type and extent of impairment you must experience in order to make a successful claim for disability benefits.

Determining if you have a qualifying impairment is essential when making a social security disability claim since if you do not have a qualifying impairment- or if you cannot prove that you do – your claim is going to be denied. At Howard Law, P.C., our experienced California disability attorneys will review your medical information and other details about your disability to help you to determine if you can qualify for disability benefits from the SSA. If you do have a qualifying impairment, we will help you to make a successful application to prove it, or assist you in appealing any denial of benefits that you receive. To learn more about the services our Orange County social security disability lawyers provide to clients, contact us today.

Qualifying Impairments for Social Security Disability

Because the SSA has a very narrow definition of disabled, the Administration has prepared a Listing of Impairments that can help you to determine if your medical condition or injury is likely to qualify you for benefits through either their social security disability insurance (SSDI) program or through their supplemental security income (SSI) program. Both SSI and SSDI have the same definition of qualifying impairment and use the same List of Impairments as part of their qualifying criteria.

The Listing of Impairments, also commonly called the Blue Book, has two parts. The first part, Part A, details adult disorders that can qualify a person for benefits. The second part, Part B, lists childhood conditions or impairments that can qualify a childhood for benefits. Both Part A and Part B are divided into different sections based on the type of impairment. For example, impairments of the Musculoskeletal System are found in section 1.00 of Part A, while Hematological Disorders are found in section 7.00 and Immune System Disorders are found in section 14.00. For a complete listing of all qualified impairments found in the Adult or Child disorders sections of the Blue Book, you can visit the SSA’s list online or contact your local SSA office. An attorney for social security disability can also provide more information about listed impairments.

If your condition is listed in the Blue Book, then it can constitute a qualifying impairment that entitles you to benefits. However, it is not enough to simply have a listed condition. Each medical problem or injury also has certain symptoms listed in the Blue Book. These symptoms must occur at the required frequencies as defined by the SSA, and you must have medical proof of these symptoms, if you wish to qualify for benefits based on your listed qualifying impairment.

If you do not exhibit the required symptoms or if your condition is not listed, this doesn’t mean that your claim for benefits will definitely be denied. However, it does become much more difficult to get benefits. You’ll need to show “medical equivalence” to listed conditions, which means showing that your medical problems are just as severe as the ones in the Blue Book. Proving this conclusively is a challenge, you will need help from a disability attorney.

Anyone applying for benefits, in fact, can benefit from the assistance of California disability benefits attorneys to prove that they have a covered condition and that the symptoms associated with their qualifying impairment are severe enough to prevent holding down a job.

At Howard Law, P.C., our Southern California SSDI lawyers have helped clients applying for disability benefits throughout Orange County and surrounding areas. For help proving you have a qualifying impairment, give us a call today at 800-872-5925.