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How Does the Social Security Administration Define “Disability?”

How does the Social Security Administration define disability?

Social Security defines disability differently than other programs such as Veterans Affairs and Workers’ Compensation. Social Security defines disability as:

1. a person’s inability to work,

2. as a result of one or more medical condition, either physical or mental,

3. that has lasted or is expected to last for at least one year or to result in death.

In order for Social Security to consider a medical condition for the purposes of disability determination, the medical condition must be a medically determinable impairment. A medically determinable impairment is a physical or mental impairment that results from anatomical, physiological or psychological conditions which can be detected by medically acceptable clinical and laboratory diagnostic techniques. A person’s complaint of symptoms is not enough, Social Security requires medical evidence consisting of sign, symptoms and laboratory findings.

Unlike Veterans Affairs and Workers’ Compensation definition of disability, benefits for Social Security disability are not paid for partial disability. Social Security does not pay benefits for medical conditions that are expected to last less than one year.

Our attorneys and legal staff can review your information to determine if you qualify you for Social Security disability. Please feel free to contact our office today for a free consultation appointment.

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