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Can I Get Social Security Disability if I Used to Work as a Carpet Installer?

Disability Benefits for Carpet Installers

Carpet installers lay padding and carpet in buildings and homes and install floor molding. Many carpet installers also lay other types of flooring, such as tile and hardwood flooring. They typically work as part of a team. While their contact with clients is usually fairly limited, they do need to be able to interact in a professional manner with clients in whose homes they are installing carpet or other flooring.

More than 28,000 people make their living installing carpet. Some work for flooring or building supply stores, which typically offer installation of carpet purchased at the store. Others work as part of a construction crew, laying carpet in new homes or buildings. Still others are self employed or subcontracted. Job opportunities are expected to remain relatively level, though new jobs for carpet installers is somewhat tied to the new housing and construction market.

Carpet installation is considered moderate to heavy physical labor, and includes a good deal of lifting, including heavy rolls of carpet and padding. The job also requires a good deal of bending, twisting, and kneeling. To install carpet, you must be able to perform fairly heavy work while on your knees.

Common disabling conditions amongst carpet installers include knee and back injuries, such as a herniated disc. This is, in large part, due to the fact that carpet installers spend a good deal of their time working hunched over and on their knees. The failure of many carpet installers to wear protective knee pads also contributes to many debilitating knee injuries.

Of course, knee and back injuries are not the only conditions which can make it impossible for carpet installers to continue working. Any illness or injury that makes it impossible to perform the heavy physical work involved in laying carpet can render a carpet installer unable to work.

Working with a Disability as a Carpet Installer

If you are a carpet installer with an injury, illness, or other medically verifiable condition which causes you to be unable to continue working in your profession, you may qualify for Social Security Disability benefits. It’s important to note, however, that if you have done other kinds of work in the past 15 years, the Social Security Administration will also consider whether you can still do those types of jobs with your disability. Additionally, if you are under 55 years old, the SSA may determine that you can be retrained for other available work which doesn’t require quite as much physical exertion.

To qualify for disability benefits, you must be found to be completely disabled and unable to perform any available work for which you are qualified or could be feasibly trained. For carpet layers, this means that you will need to show that you are either physically or educationally unable to be retrained to do work such as working at a flooring showroom.

Filing for Disability as a Carpet Installer

When you apply for Social Security Disability SSDI or SSI benefits, the first thing you’re going to need to do is make sure that you are receiving some form of medical treatment for your condition. In the first place, your condition will need to be diagnosed by a doctor or health care professional before the SSA will consider it as potentially disabling. In the second place, you will need to show that you are still unable to work despite following your doctor’s orders and attempting to recover from your injury or illness.

The next thing you will want to do is to contact a Social Security Disability attorney. Less than one third of Social Security Disability claims are accepted in the initial application stage. While having a representative doesn’t guarantee that your initial claim will be accepted, it does increase your chances significantly. A Social Security Disability lawyer will communicate with your health care officials to make sure that the language on their reports reflects the kind of information the SSA is looking for when they are determining your claim. For example, it’s not enough for your doctor’s report to state that you are completely disabled. The repost must state implicitly what restrictions your disability is causing you, such as how much you can lift.

Carpet installers can’t work when they have chronic knee or back problems, and a lot of carpet installers eventually do develop such problems because of how hard the job is on the body. But simply having a document that states you have back or knee pain won’t help you get disability benefits. Having your Social Security Disability representative go over the information in your medical records to make sure everything is stated properly can go a long way towards your claim or appeal being approved.

Don’t delay. If you think you may qualify for Social Security Disability benefits, fill out your free disability evaluation. It could be the first step towards receiving the benefits you’re entitled to.