The Listing of Impairments in Disability Claims

May 16, 2018

When applying for Social Security disability, it is important to understand how the Social Security Administration (SSA) will evaluate your application.  In a very real sense, the SSA uses the listing of impairments and other factors to determine your future.  This should process should never be taken lightly.

Having the legal expertise of Social Security disability lawyers like Lowe Scott Fisher Co., LPA can hep protect your rights and maximize your benefits.  With a dedicated team devoted to helping you receive the best possible outcome, navigating the Social Security benefits process can be smooth, streamlined, and allow you to protect your family and future.

How Does the SSA Evaluate Claims?

After receiving an application for disability benefits, the SSA’s job is to evaluate the application according to federal regulations to determine whether an individual qualifies as “disabled” for benefits purposes.  This evaluation includes consideration of age, past work experience, severity of medical conditions, education, and work skills.

While there are many variables, the most important part of many benefits application evaluations is consideration of the Listing of Impairments.

What Is the Listing of Impairments?

The Listing of Impairments, also called the Blue Book, is a listing of medical conditions that the SSA will, when all requirements are met, automatically deem to be disabilities.  Now published and updated electronically by the SSA, the impairments list “describes, for each major body system, impairments considered severe enough to prevent an individual from doing any gainful activity (or in the case of children under age 18 applying for SSI, severe enough to cause marked and severe functional limitations).”

Assessment of adult disabilities are covered in Part A of the listing.  Assessment of childhood disabilities are covered in Part B.

How Using the Listing Can Help You

It determining whether Social Security disability benefits may be available to you, your attorney will first review the Blue Book to see if your medical condition or injury are present.  Once your condition is matched to a listing, the requirements set out in the listing can help your attorney prepare your application or appeal.

Each listing in the Blue Book includes requirements—aspects of a medical condition—for the listed condition to be considered a disability.  Your attorney will gather all existing records and evidence to establish that disability benefits are appropriate.  If any medical documentation necessary to meet the requirements is missing, your attorney will assist you in obtaining the proper medical tests and treatments needed to establish your claim.

What If My Impairment Is Not Listed?

If your particular medical condition is not listed, that does not mean that Social Security benefits are necessarily unavailable to you.  The Listing of Impairments is voluminous, but it cannot possibly contain all of the disabilities that can occur.

If your condition does not match a listing, an experienced Social Security lawyer can help you establish that your condition or conditions “equal” a listing.  The effects of your particular condition may be so similar, or the combined effects of several non-disabling conditions may be so drastic, that the SSA should treat your condition as equal to a listed disabling condition.

Lowe Scott Fisher Co., LPA – Social Security Disability Lawyers

If you or a loved one are in need of disability assistance, do not leave your future to chance.  Contact a Social Security disability attorney who will fight for you.  Call Lowe Scott Fisher Co., LPA now for a free initial consultation.

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