Social Security Disability is an important form of income for many people. For those who suffer from injuries or ailments that keep them from working, SSD benefits can make all the difference.
Unfortunately, the Social Security Administration (SSA) denies the applications for many (if not most) people who apply for these necessary benefits. Sometimes, the application may be denied because an injury or illness is uncommon or unrecognized by the SSA.
If your SSD application was denied, don’t give up. Most applications are denied the first time they are submitted. This is especially so if you have an uncommon ailment or impairment.
How can I get approved for disability benefits?
If your impairment is not listed by the SSA as an approved impairment, you may still qualify for benefits. However, the impairment must meet the proper criteria. In general, the impairment must be “medically determinable,” which means that it must be recognized by clinical and laboratory testing.
Additionally, the impairment must affect your residual functional capacity, or RFC. In general terms, your RFC is your activity limits. If your impairment reduces your abilities to perform certain activities, you may have a valid claim for benefits.
What medical documentation do I need?
You must have your abilities and limitations fully documented. Such medical documentation may include:
- Records of examination by a physician
- CAT scans
- Blood work panel results
- Mental health records
While there may be other forms of acceptable documentation, these are the most commonly used. If you are unsure if a certain type of document helps prove your claim, consider keeping it to have available. It is typically better to save documentation that you don’t ultimately need than to discard documentation that could tip the scales in your favor.
Navigating the Social Security Disability application process
People who are unfamiliar with legal and procedural issues within government agencies may miss out on benefits that they deserve because of minor errors or administrative complications. If you believe that your medical issues should qualify you for SSD benefits, get legal guidance as needed to protect your rights and help you obtain benefits.