Unable To Work- Can I Qualify For Social Security Disability?

Date: September 21, 2015
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Question: I am unable to work due to several medical issues. My past work experience was very strenuous and required a lot of heavy lifting. I can’t do that anymore. Will I be eligible for Social Security disability benefits? C.P., Towanda, Pa.

Answer: To qualify for Social Security disability (SSDIB) benefits, you must establish several things. First, you must have insured status. In other words, you must have paid (via payroll and wage deductions) sufficient amounts into the Social Security system over a requisite period of time. If you have insured status, you will be eligible to qualify for SSDIB benefits, but you must establish that you are “disabled”. You can prove disability by showing that you have a condition or conditions that meet the diagnostic criteria set forth in the Social Security listing of impairments. If you do not meet a listing, you can still establish “disability” by showing that you are incapable of performing not only the work that you have performed in the past, but also that you are incapable of performing alternative work that falls within your vocational capabilities.

If you and have questions about your Social Security claim, contact me at tcummings@dlplaw.com or call (570) 347-1011 for a free consultation.

Disclaimer: The above article is for instructive purposes only and each case is fact sensitive.  Consultation with an attorney should be obtained instead of reliance upon the legal issues discussed in this column.

Tom Cummings
Thomas P. Cummings has been a Partner with Dougherty Leventhal & Price, LLP since 1996 and has been with the firm since 1991. He focuses his practice on workers’ compensation, Social Security Disability and personal injury cases.