In the U.S., many people with disabilities can qualify for social security disability insurance (SSDI) or supplemental security income (SSI). These programs offer people monthly payments to people who are unable to work or have significant limitations.
There are too many types of disabilities that can qualify a person for SSDI or SSI to fit into one list. However, many people on SSDI and/or SSI have a disability that falls into one of these categories.
Common Disabilities That May Qualify You For Social Security Benefits
Musculoskeletal System and Connective Tissue Disorders
The musculoskeletal system helps to sit, walk, and stand. It connects your bones, ligaments, cartilage, and other connective tissues. Many disorders affecting this system make it difficult or impossible to work or perform basic chores.
There are many different conditions that affect the musculoskeletal system, but some of the most common include:
- Ruptured discs
- Carpal tunnel syndrome
- Spine disorders
- Degenerative disc disease
Nervous System Disorders
The nervous system includes the brain, nerves, spinal cord, and sensory organs. It’s responsible for decision-making and makes it possible for different parts of your body to communicate.
Functional nervous system disorders like epilepsy and neuralgia, degenerative diseases like Parkinson’s disease and multiple sclerosis, infections like meningitis, and brain or spinal cord injuries can all limit a person’s ability to work. If you have one of these conditions or another condition affecting the nervous system, you may qualify for social security disability benefits.
Intellectual disabilities limit a person’s ability to communicate, learn, remember information, reason, solve problems, adapt to situations, or some combination of all of the above. These conditions often begin to show up in childhood.
Common intellectual disabilities include Down syndrome, fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD), Prader-Willi syndrome (PWS), and other developmental delays.
Circulatory System Diseases, Disorders, and Conditions
The circulatory or cardiovascular system includes your arteries and veins. Conditions that affect this system can have a large impact on your life and ability to work.
If you have been affected by a heart attack, heart failure, or stroke, you may qualify for social security benefits. There are many other conditions affecting the circulatory system that can lead a person to qualify for social security disability benefits.
Cancer and Neoplasms
Social security benefits can often help people with cancer. In most cases, Stage IV or terminal cancer will automatically qualify you for disability benefits. Less serious or earlier cancer cases can sometimes also meet the qualification requirements for social security disability benefits.
A neoplasm is an abnormal growth that forms a tumor or lump. Tumors can sometimes spread to affect organs, which may threaten your ability to work or even your life.
Many people receiving social security disability benefits have a mood disorder. Some of the most common mood disorders are bipolar disorder, major depressive disorder, persistent depressive disorder (dysthymia), and cyclothymic disorder.
While some people’s mood disorders are mild enough to allow for work, socializing, and other activities, others’ conditions may limit work or make it impossible. If you can show that your mood disorder makes you unable to work, you may qualify for social security benefits.
Chronic or Organic Mental Disorders
Organic mental disorders are a type of severe temporary or lifelong brain condition that causes psychological or behavioral issues. Some common examples include:
- Alzheimer’s disease
People affected by these conditions often experience losses in their memory and brain function. These disorders can come from disease, injury, defects in the body, or a combination of all of the above.
Mental disorders, including schizophrenic and other psychotic disorders, can make it challenging for a person to maintain a job. These conditions affect the mind in ways that limit everyday tasks and interactions.
Psychotic disorders usually come with symptoms like delusions, hallucinations, catatonic behavior, or disorganized speech. Common conditions in this category include schizophrenia, schizoaffective disorder, and delusional disorder.
There are many mental and physical disorders that do not come under any of the categories we listed above. Both common and lesser-known conditions can cause someone to qualify for social security disability benefits.
Applying and qualifying for benefits can be complicated no matter what condition you have, so we recommend talking to a disability lawyer during the claims process.
What to Do If You Have a Disability That Limits Your Ability to Work
If you become disabled and unable to work, there’s a good chance you are eligible for SSDI. SSDI benefits are designed for people who have previously worked at jobs covered by social security. The payments can give you income to meet your own and your family’s needs.
In order to get SSDI payments, you will need to apply. The SSA will require you to show proof of your medical condition and your work history. A social security disability lawyer may be able to give you a better chance of winning or appealing your claim.
Do You Need a Social Security Disability Lawyer?
It can be hard to qualify for social security disability benefits even with a serious disability. If your claim is denied, you may want to talk to a social security disability lawyer about how to improve your case.
We understand that you may be worried about affording the cost of a lawyer. In most cases, you won’t have to pay your attorney an hourly rate or upfront fee. Most social security disability lawyers operate on a contingency basis, meaning you only owe them money if they can recover benefits on your behalf. If you don’t get benefits, you won’t owe the lawyer anything.
The last thing anyone with a disability needs is financial stress. The sooner you can get the benefits you need, the better.
Talk to a Social Security Disability Lawyer in Snohomish County
The Anderson Hunter Law Firm has been helping people in the Snohomish County area with their legal needs for over 100 years. We have handled over a thousand disability claims and helped people throughout every step of the claims process.
Our social security disability attorneys know what the SSA will consider as they evaluate your claim, so we can help people like you get the social security benefits you are eligible for. We will not collect a fee unless you get your benefits.
Contact us today for a free consultation, or check out our legal guide to social security disability benefits.