A herniated disc can interfere with your ability to perform various physical tasks. And, depending on the severity of your condition, a herniated disc may even limit your ability to work and earn a living.
You may qualify for disability benefits in these circumstances. Through the U.S. Social Security Administration (SSA), you could potentially receive benefits to help you pay for food, housing, and other such basic needs. The following tips will help you when submitting an application:
1. Determine If You Meet A Blue Book Listing
The SSA’s Blue Book is a reference describing the conditions that might qualify an individual for disability benefits. Before you start working on your application, review section 1.15, covering “disorders of the skeletal spine resulting in compromise of a nerve root.” This section provides information describing the criteria someone with a herniated disc must meet to qualify for benefits through the SSA.
2. Establish You Qualify Through Medical Records & Evidence
Providing sufficient medical evidence when submitting an application for disability benefits when you have a herniated disc is essential. The more valid evidence and documentation you can provide, the better your odds of receiving an approval for herniated disc disability benefits.
Types of evidence you might submit with your application include (but are not limited to) the following:
- MRI scans
- CT cans
- General descriptions of your condition and its impact on your physical abilities
- Physical exam records
- Treatment records
- Pain records
Be aware that you may not need to gather this evidence on your own. A disability benefits attorney could help you gather and submit evidence you need to demonstrate why you are eligible for benefits.
3. Keep Up With Treatment Plans
Keeping up with treatment plans for a herniated disc serves two critical purposes. The first is that proper treatment could theoretically help you recover from your condition—thereby restoring your ability to work and earn a living. The second is that adhering to treatment plans shows the SSA that you are taking all necessary steps to avoid having to rely on disability benefits indefinitely.
4. Fill Out a RFC
A Residual Functional Capacity (RFC) form provides the SSA with a thorough assessment of your ability to perform work-related tasks and to participate in work-related activities. Essentially, this form summarizes for the SSA why, and how, exactly your herniated disc prevents you from working.
It is best if the doctor who treats you completes this form on your behalf. However, for various reasons, they may not be able or willing to do so. If your doctor can’t assist you in completing an RFC, the SSA can direct you to an approved physician who will complete the form on your behalf.
5. Work With An Attorney
Again, if you have a herniated disc and are applying for disability benefits with the SSA, you don’t have to navigate the process alone. Instead, consider hiring a disability benefits lawyer to represent you.
An attorney can handle many aspects of the process on your behalf. Their expertise may also play a critical role in helping you receive an approval from the SSA when you submit your application. Learn more by taking the Free Case Evaluation on this page today to get connected and speak with an attorney—at zero cost to you.