Muscular Dystrophy (MD) is a group of diseases that cause progressive weakness and loss of muscle mass. In these diseases, abnormal genes interfere with the production of proteins needed for healthy muscle formation. Living with MD can pose significant challenges, including the ability to work and maintain an income. One potential source of assistance for individuals with MD is Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI), a federal program designed to provide financial support for people with disabilities. Here’s what you should know about your eligibility for SSDI if you are living with Muscular Dystrophy from a Social Security disability lawyer.
Muscular Dystrophy Overview
Muscular Dystrophy refers to a group of more than 30 genetic diseases characterized by progressive weakness and degeneration of the muscles that control movement. These disorders vary in terms of age of onset, severity, and pattern of inheritance. Some forms of MD may appear in infancy or childhood, while others may not appear until middle age or later. While there is no cure for Muscular Dystrophy, treatment options can help manage symptoms and improve quality of life.
Requirements to be Approved for SSDI
To be eligible for SSDI benefits, the Social Security Administration (SSA) must determine that you have a medical condition that meets their definition of disability. This typically means:
- You can’t do the work you did before;
- SSA decides that you can’t adjust to other work because of your medical condition(s); and
- Your disability has lasted or is expected to last for at least one year or result in death.
In the case of Muscular Dystrophy, you need to demonstrate that your condition severely limits your physical or mental ability to work on a sustained basis unless you show that you meet the criteria in the section below.
Automatic Medical Qualification for SSDI
The Social Security Administration has a listing for Muscular Dystrophy in its Blue Book of Impairments. The listing, under section 11.13, details the limitations that would automatically medically qualify a person for SSDI benefits:
A. Disorganization of motor function in two extremities, resulting in an extreme limitation in the ability to stand up from a seated position, balance while standing or walking, or use the upper extremities.
B. Marked limitation in physical functioning, and in one of the following:
- Understanding, remembering, or applying information; or
- Interacting with others; or
- Concentrating, persisting, or maintaining pace; or
- Adapting or managing oneself.
Submitting Complete Medical Records to Social Security: What You Need
When applying for SSDI, providing complete and comprehensive medical records is critical. These records should clearly document your MD diagnosis, symptoms, and how they affect your ability to work. Relevant medical records might include:
- Diagnosis and treatment notes from your doctor;
- Results from any relevant tests, such as genetic tests, muscle biopsy, or EMG;
- Notes from physical therapy sessions or other treatments;
- Documentation of your symptoms and how they affect your daily life.
What to Do if Your MD Symptoms Do Not Meet the Requirements
If your symptoms do not meet the specific requirements listed in the SSA’s Blue Book, you may still qualify for SSDI benefits under a medical-vocational allowance. This allowance considers your age, education, work history, and residual functional capacity (your ability to do work-related physical and mental activities). If SSA determines that you cannot perform any work in the national economy due to your MD symptoms, you may be approved for benefits.
Applying for Disability Benefits with the Help of a Social Security Disability Lawyer
Given the complexity of the SSDI application process, it can be beneficial to seek the help of a Social Security Disability lawyer. These professionals can guide you through the application process, help gather necessary medical evidence, and represent you in any hearings or appeals. Their expertise can increase your chances of being approved for benefits.
Request a Free Case Evaluation and Contact Second Chance Lawyer – Merryl Jones
Second Chance Lawyer – Merryl Jones, offers free case evaluations for individuals seeking SSDI benefits. With experience in the field of Social Security disability law, she has given thousands of deserving Central Texans a second chance to win their Social Security disability benefits. Impressively, she has won benefits for 98% of the clients she has represented. Don’t hesitate to reach out and request a free case evaluation. Your second chance might be just a phone call away.