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Health condition serious will I be approved for SSDI first time

Most claimants, who ask whether or not they will be approved the first time they apply for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI), assume that approval depends simply on the severity of their health condition. Unfortunately, there are many nonmedical requirements you must meet before the SSA will even evaluate your condition and determine you are disabled.

Serious health condition does not guarantee approval for SSDI

Before reviewing the severity of your health condition the SSA will first determine if you meet the nonmedical requirements for SSDI. Specifically, they will review if you have sufficient work credits to be insured for SSDI, whether or not your condition will last at least 12 continuous months, and whether you are able to work or perform what they call substantial gainful activity. If you meet both of these requirements, then and only then, will they review the severity of your health condition.

How do you know if your health condition is serious enough to get SSDI?

First, it’s important to note that many claimants have a severe health condition, or more than one, but they continue to force themselves to get up and go to work each day. What if you have a serious condition but you continue to work? Although you may be able to work part-time, if you make too much money the SSA will consider you NOT disabled, regardless of the severity of your health condition. The most basic definition of “disability,” according to the SSA, is the inability to work.

If you are not working it’s fairly easily to determine if you have a condition which is so severe the SSA will decide you are disabled. The first step is to review the Social Security Administration’s Blue Book, or listing of impairments. This is a list of systems and conditions the SSA will find automatically disabling. If you can prove, through valid medical evidence, that your condition is on this listing, or it is so severe it meets a condition on this listing, the SSA will determine you are disabled.

What if my health condition is not on the SSA Listing of Impairments?

It’s important to note that many conditions are not on the SSA list but they could be quite severe. Additionally, many claimants may not have one condition but rather many conditions, which in totality, limit their ability to work. If your condition is not on the list, you may be able to prove you do not have the residual capacity to continue to work at a substantial level. This process is called the medical vocational process.

However, if your condition does not meet a listing, it will be very difficult to win benefits, especially for a younger claimant. Older claimants, however, will have an easier time proving they do not have the ability to retrain for new work or work their old job, especially if they have limited work skills and education. Talk to a disability lawyer if you have questions.
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