If you have been diagnosed with melanoma, which is an aggressive and rare kind of cancer, you might find yourself unable to work. In this case, you might be eligible to receive Social Security Disability benefits. Sometimes when melanoma is caught early it can be cured, but other times it might be too far advanced for treatment to halt the progression. The Social Security Administration (SSA) has set medical criteria established in a guide called the Blue Book.
A Social Security attorney or advocate can help you get your claim on track.
How Does Melanoma Qualify For Disability Benefits?
To qualify for disability because of melanoma, the Blue Book states that your cancer must have:
- Undergone surgical removal then returned in the same site OR
- Metastasized or spread to the lymph nodes, skin, or other locations.
If you have primary melanoma that has not metastasized, it won’t meet the listing but you can still be approved for benefits using a residual functional capacity, which shows all your restrictions and limitations so Disability Determination Services can understand what you can and cannot do. It will indicate your work history, your work skills, educational level, age, and medical condition so an overall picture is made clear and it becomes evident that you are unable to work.
How Can An Attorney Help Me While Applying?
If you are applying for disability benefits, an attorney or advocate can help you get your claim on the right track. Your attorney will get all your medical records and documentation in order so your case can get a fair review by Disability Determination Services. If your records don’t include test results, surgical notes, scans, x-rays, lab reports, and physician notes, then an accurate assessment cannot be made. Your lawyer will ensure that you are treated fairly and all documents are in place for thorough review.
How Can An Attorney Help Me If My Claim Is Denied?
Disability claims are often denied. When a claim is denied, an appeal must be filed. Eventually, you will go to a hearing before an administrative law judge. At that hearing, you will be questioned by a vocational expert. The expert is trying to determine if there is some other kind of work you would be able to do.
An individual with melanoma might be asked, “Because of cancerous lesions in your hands and on your arms, are you limited in your ability to grasp, push, pull, or reach?” “Do cancerous lesions impact your ability to see or speak?” Your attorney understands the questioning process and how it will relate to your condition, so you can prepare for the process.
Speak With An Attorney Today!
If you are unable to work, you want your disability claim to get on the right track. Talk with a Social Security attorney or advocate today. Complete the Free Case Evaluation Form on this page so we can share your details with a lawyer or advocate who can help you pursue disability benefits for your melanoma diagnosis.