The compassionate allowances program is designed to help those who are among the most seriously disabled to receive Social Security disability benefits in a timelier manner. The program recognizes that certain conditions by their very nature are always completely debilitating.
There are currently over 200 conditions listed in the Compassionate Allowances program. The SSA is constantly reviewing and considering other conditions which may qualify for the program. The Social Security Administration (SSA) added 30 new conditions to their list of compassionate allowances this December. One of the conditions added was Caudal Regression Syndrome (Types III and IV).
Caudal Regression Syndrome (Types III and IV) - Conditions and Symptoms
Caudal regression syndrome is a birth defect which is believed to be related to low levels of folic acid in the mother’s diet during the first trimester of pregnancy. The disorder keeps the caudal region of the body (the lower half) from forming normally. There are four numbered types of Caudal Regression Syndrome, with types III and IV being the most serious.
Caudal regression syndrome can cause:
- Partially formed or absent lower spine
- Spinal cord defects
- Skeletal malformations
- Motor deficits
- Sensory deficits
- Genito-urinary defects
- Lack of one or both kidneys or their function
- Heart disease
Those with types I and II have relatively minor disabilities and may be able to develop normally. Depending on the severity and type of symptoms and other circumstances, those with type I or II caudal regression syndrome may or may not qualify for Social Security disability benefits.
Those with types III and IV often have severe mobility defects. In many cases, lower limbs need to be amputated, either at the knee or at the hip. In other cases, crutches, braces, wheelchairs, or other ambulatory assistance is needed.
Applying for Social Security Disability with Caudal Regression Syndrome (Types III and IV)
If you or your child has been diagnosed with type III or IV caudal regression syndrome, you qualify for a compassionate allowance. This makes the claims process much quicker and simpler. As long as you have the appropriate medical documentation, your claim will be set apart from other claims and put through a streamlined approval process. In most cases, you will begin to receive benefits within two months.
The medical documentation you will need to satisfy the SSA’s requirements for the compassionate allowances program includes:
- Documentation of all pertinent examinations and medical history which contributed to a diagnosis of type III or IV caudal regression syndrome
- Any medical imaging used to diagnose type III or IV caudal regression syndrome
Your Caudal Regression Syndrome (Types III and IV) Disability Case
As long as your medical documentation supports your diagnosis of type III or IV caudal regression syndrome and your claim paperwork is filled out completely and correctly, you will be approved for benefits based on having a condition which qualifies for a compassionate allowance. If you are claiming for a dependent child (as is most often the case with caudal regression syndrome), your eligibility for Medicaid, SSI, and other Social Security disability benefits may be partially based on your income and assets.
Many claimants find it helpful to have a Social Security lawyer go over their claim to ensure that everything is in order. This can help avoid delays in processing and give you the additional time and peace of mind to care for your loved one with caudal regression syndrome.