If vision loss has left you unable to work, you may be eligible to receive disability benefits from the Social Security Administration (SSA). The SSA oversees disability programs that pay monthly benefits, which can be helpful with paying the costs of your medical care and can be used toward your daily care and living expenses. Before you apply for Social Security Disability benefits, you will need to make sure you have the following information and documentation included in your disability application:
- Medical Documents to Include in Your Application – You will need to provide thorough supporting medical documentation that shows your diagnosis, and that you will be unable to work for at least 12 months. Your documentation will need to back up your disability and show the limitations you suffer because of the condition. The first document is to provide confirmation of the diagnosis. Your treating physician can provide this in form of a letter with the supporting test results or exam notes. Have a detailed list of the names and contact details of all your providers – physicians, nurse practitioners, caseworkers, clinics, hospitals, and laboratories that have provided medical care for your vision loss. You will need a detail note from your provider – most likely an optometrist or ophthalmologist – that clearly indicates your symptoms, limitations, and treatment. You will need to provide documentation that indicates your prescription medications, dosages, and frequency as well as copies of all labs and test results.
- Additional Information You Will Need – You will need to provide additional information besides the hard medical evidence. You will need to show that you worked full-time at one time but because of your vision loss you are now unable to do so. You will need to provide a summary of your past employment and your job duties. Your packet should include a copy of your most recent W-2, or if you are self-employed, you will need to provide a copy of your most recent year’s tax return. The application should also include your Social Security number and to confirm your identity, provide a copy of your birth certificate or baptismal certificate.