If you have neuropathy and you think you will be out of work for at least 12 months, and you have a strong claim for disability benefits, then you may be approved for monthly benefits from the Social Security Administration (SSA). Neuropathy causes weakness, numbness, and pain from nerve damage, which is usually in the feet and hands. Below there is a list of five signs that will help you determine if your disability claim for neuropathy has the potential of being approved.
1. Non-medical requirements are met
If you have earned enough work credits to be covered by Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI), you may be approved for disability benefits. For most individuals, you must have worked the equivalent of five years full-time out of the last 10 years. You should prepare a detailed work history.
2. Sufficient medical evidence is gathered
The majority of disability claims are denied during the initial review process because of a lack of medical evidence. You will need to provide physician notes, a confirmed diagnosis, test results like neurological studies, treatment plan, and your prognosis. Hard medical evidence is needed to make a disability claim successful.
3. You cannot work for a minimum of 12 months
To be approved for disability benefits, you must show that you are unable to work for at least a year. You will need to provide supporting medical evidence that shows your condition will keep you from working and earning a living for at least 12 months.
4. You can meet the criteria of a Blue Book listing
The SSA uses a medical guide, which is called the Blue Book, to determine if a claimant qualifies for disability benefits. There are sections in the Blue Book to cover differently bodily systems and each section has listings for different potentially disabling conditions. There are two listings in the Blue Book that apply to neuropathy. Listing 9.08 focuses on neuropathy that is specifically related to diabetes. To qualify per that listing, you must have a diabetes diagnosis and your neuropathy must be characterized by ataxia, tremor, paralysis, or involuntary movement in two of your arms or legs. Listing 11.14, which covers the neurological system addresses peripheral neuropathy, which requires you have a confirmed diagnosis and show signs of neuropathy such as tremor, ataxia, paralysis, or involuntary movement in two of your arms or legs. If you do not meet the criteria of a listing, you can qualify through a residual functional capacity (RFC) form through a medical vocational allowance.
5. You are working with a disability lawyer
Those who have legal representation are more likely to have their disability claim approved. A disability lawyer is familiar with the claims process and will know what supporting evidence and documentation that you will need for your claim to prevail. A disability lawyer can also help you prepare for the hearing process should your claim advance to that level. If you are applying for disability benefits because of neuropathy, enlist the help of a disability attorney.
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