Like many medical conditions, liver disease starts with mild symptoms that if left untreated, can morph into life-threatening issues. Severe nausea, chronic fatigue, and intense abdominal pain often make it impossible to hold down a steady job.
If you suffer from advanced signs of liver disease and the symptoms have forced you off the job, you should file a claim for disability benefits with the Social Security Administration (SSA). Since most claims come back denied, it is important to know the five signs you may be approved for disability benefits.
#1. Gain a Sufficient Number of Work Credits
The SSA requires workers that file Social Security disability benefits claim to amass a minimum number of work credits. The number of work credits that you need to accumulate depends on your age at the time you became disabled.
In 2021, American workers gained one work credit for every $1,470 earned as compensation from an employer or the income generated from self-employment. The amount of money needed to earn one work credit in 2022 might differ from the $1,470 established for 2021.
#2. The Importance of Hard Evidence
To get disability benefits approved for liver disease, you must demonstrate that the symptoms of the illness have created a disability. This means you need to attach medical documentation that proves the seriousness of your claim. The results of blood tests, imaging tests, and the analysis of tissue should help the SSA determine whether you suffer from acute symptoms of liver disease.
Imaging tests are especially important because they can detect the extent of liver damage. A report submitted by your doctor should include a prognosis on the chances of you making a full recovery from liver disease. A detailed account of treatment and physical therapy programs should accompany other medical documents.
#3. 12 Consecutive Months Out of Work
The third sign that you claim for disability benefits may be approved is also the clearest sign to understand. You must miss 12 consecutive months of work to qualify for Social Security disability benefits.
Your employer can verify the amount of time that you missed by submitting timekeeping records for your claim. Copies of bank statements show how much money you earned from your employer before and after you received a diagnosis of liver disease.
#4. Meet the Symptoms Criteria Established by the SSA
After you submit the medical evidence that you have compiled, a team of medical examiners from the SSA compares your symptoms to the symptoms criteria listed in the Blue Book. The Blue Book lists chronic liver disease under Section 5.05, with the definition of liver disease to be liver cell death, inflammation, or scarring that persists for a minimum of six months.
If you do not meet the symptoms listed in the Blue Book for liver disease, you should consider undergoing a Residual Functional Capacity (RFC) assessment. An RFC gives the SSA insight into how much work you can accomplish while dealing with your liver disease symptoms. Because liver disease often causes chronic fatigue, you might have to complete one or more exercises that test your endurance.
#5. You Got Legal Help
A Social Security disability attorney can help you build a persuasive claim that the SSA approves. Your attorney can also there for you if you need to file an appeal. Fill out a Free Case Evaluation today to get in contact with an independent, participating attorney who subscribes to the website.