If you have been diagnosed with lung cancer, you might be eligible for Social Security disability benefits to help pay for medical treatments, rent or a mortgage, or other daily living needs. Unfortunately, thousands of people with cancer are denied benefits every year. If you’re applying for Social Security with lung cancer, you should speak with a Social Security attorney as soon as possible to have the best chance of winning your claim.
How Does Lung Cancer Qualify for Disability?
Lung cancer qualifies for Social Security disability benefits if it’s advanced or a particularly aggressive form of cancer. Lung cancer is considered a disability by the SSA. The SSA maintains its own criteria for qualification, known as the Blue Book. There are three ways to qualify for disability with lung cancer via the Blue Book:
- Your lung cancer is inoperable, has returned despite treatment, or has spread beyond the lung’s hilar nodes.
- You have small-cell lung cancer.
- You have cancer in the upper region of your lung and you’re undergoing multiple forms of anticancer therapy.
How Can an Attorney Help Me While Applying?
When you’re applying for disability benefits with lung cancer, your attorney can ensure that the SSA is able to find all of your applicable medical documents and has other paperwork necessary for approval. When the SSA evaluates your claim it’ll need pathology reports, surgeon’s notes, a list of your medications and cancer treatments, and more.
If the SSA cannot find this information, your lung cancer claim may be denied. Your attorney is your liaison between the SSA, your doctor, and any other related parties. An attorney or advocate can help ensure the SSA has every document it needs to evaluate your claim.
How Can My Attorney Help Me if My Claim is Denied?
If your claim for lung cancer and you’re denied benefits, your Social Security disability attorney or advocate can help prove that you’re unable to earn gainful income based on your past job experience. When you’re appealing your case in front of a Social Security judge at a hearing, you’ll need to discuss your ability to work with a vocational expert. A vocational expert will ask many questions about your past work experience, how your lung cancer treatments or complications affect your ability to do tasks, and more.
A Social Security attorney or advocate is well versed in the types of questions a vocational expert will ask someone with lung cancer. Your attorney can help you prepare for questions regarding how your chemotherapy causes nausea, your physical limitations due to cancer treatments, and how long your lung cancer therapies are expected to last. This is especially important if you have lung cancer that’s below Stage III-B, which usually doesn’t qualify for Social Security benefits based on medical records alone.
Connect With an Attorney Today
If you’re applying for Social Security benefits with lung cancer, you should speak with an attorney before applying to get an idea as to whether you’ll qualify based on the Blue Book’s medical criteria for lung cancer, and what work paperwork you’ll need to prepare before applying. To connect with an attorney or advocate in your area, simply fill out our Free Case Evaluation today.