Why Is It Important To Hire An Disability Attorney For Winning Disability Benefits For Fibromyalgia
Even if a claimant has enough documented evidence favoring his or her claim, if it is not presented in front of the judge in an appropriate way, the claimant may not be able to get the decision in his or her favor. For this, the claimant needs to hire an experienced disability attorney who can prepare and present the claimantâs case in the best possible way so that Disability Benefit is granted for Fibromyalgia.
An experienced SSD attorney would have significant knowledge as to what the judge might require of the claimant during the hearing and what are the other relevant information that needs to be furnished in front of the judge at the time of hearing to win a disability claim. It should be noted here that an SSD attorney gets paid only after the claimant has been granted disability benefit, thus the attorney does all he or she can to get the claimant disability benefits
What Can These Signs And Symptoms Include
Providing proof of the signs and symptoms you are experiencing sounds simple enough in theory. But first, you need to know what some of these signs and symptoms are.
A significant sign is simply fatigue. This can include everything from waking up exhausted to running out of energy in the middle of the day.
In some cases, fibromyalgia may result in certain psychological conditions as well. For example, it can very easily lead to depression and anxiety. On top of that, fibromyalgia can lead to memory issues as well.
And there are some surprising physiological symptoms as wellfor example, many who suffer from fibromyalgia experience irritable bowel syndrome .
It doesnt mean you cant successfully submit a disability application to the SSA. But a successful application will have extensive medical documentation about your condition that helps prove you are experiencing enough symptoms to qualify for benefits to help support you and your family.
Can I Get Disability Because Of Fibromyalgia
The Americans with Disabilities Act does not contain a list of medical conditions that constitute disabilities. Instead, the ADA has a general definition of disability that each person must meet. Therefore, some people with fibromyalgia will have a disability under the ADA and others will not.
Because fibromyalgia is difficult to diagnose — typically, health care providers rule out other conditions through a physical exam and various blood tests — it’s important that you do your homework before you apply for disability.
According to federal regulations, to qualify for disability you must prove that you have a severe impairment. You also need to prove that the impairment limits your physical or mental ability to do work.
The Social Security disability regulations define disability as “the inability to do any substantial gainful activity due to your medical or mental problem.” In addition, according to the Social Security Administration, your condition must interfere with basic work-related activities. If it doesn’t, your claim won’t be considered. Instead, Social Security will find that you are not disabled.
The combined effect of having multiple impairments is taken into account. That can be important for many people with fibromyalgia. You must be unable to do your previous work or any other substantial gainful activity. Your age and education are considered, as well as your remaining abilities and your work experience.
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Can You Qualify For Disability With Fibromyalgia
Fibromyalgia is one of the harder conditions to get approved for as a disability in the United States.
Because the symptoms are often self-reported, youll need medical documents and a doctor to support your case. However, its possible to have a successful claim for FM.
Keep in mind that your best chance of getting approved for disability is to have:
- relevant medical records
- doctors opinions
- statements from friends, family members, and co-workers
Read on to learn what the Social Security Administration requires and how you can build your case for a fibromyalgia disability claim.
The SSA is responsible for evaluating all disability applications. When reviewing your case, the SSA will determine if you have a medically determinable impairment of FM.
The criteria and requirements for claiming disability due to FM are extensive. They include:
- symptoms of pain in joints, muscles, and surrounding tissues that must be severe and present for at least 3 months
- documented evidence that rules out other conditions
- statements from you and others about any restrictions on, or inabilities to perform, your daily activities
- whether FM prevents you from working
- six or more ongoing signs or symptoms of FM
These signs or symptoms may include:
- waking up exhausted
In the past, doctors would check 18 specific points to see how many of them were painful when pressed firmly.
Overall, your application should contain:
- chronic exhaustion
What Are The Symptoms Of Fibromyalgia
Historically, individuals are diagnosed with fibromyalgia if they have confirmed pain in 11 out of 18 possible tender points. These tender points include but are not limited to the following:
- Back of the head
- Tops of the shoulders
- Upper chest, hips, knees, and outer elbows
Pain in these trigger points varies case-to-case. The pain can range from a mild discomfort to a more intense, almost unbearable level. For example, if you or your spouse experiences pain that is best described as a sharp stabbing, throbbing, or accompanied by burning sensations.
Also, the pain can change depending on placement throughout the body. Other common symptoms include pain in the lower belly, depression, anxiety, focus problems, dry eyes, bladder issues, and non-restorative sleep.
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Qualifying For The Disability Tax Credit
In order to qualify for the Disability Tax Credit the disabled person must have taxable income and be able to prove a prolonged and significant impairment of their physical or mental abilities. This impairment must result in the persons inability to perform at least 1 of their basic daily life activities and/or require Life Sustaining Therapy for at least 14 hours per week.
FIND OUT IF YOU ARE ELIGIBLE TORECEIVE THE DISABILITY TAX CREDIT!
Can I Get Disability For Fibromyalgia In Canada
You may be able to qualify for disability benefits in Canada based on your fibromyalgia diagnosis.
Disability insurance carriers do include fibromyalgia in the list of disabilities they cover for both short- and long-term disability. So, yes, you may be able to get disability for fibromyalgia in Canada. According to the Arthritis Society, fibromyalgia affects about two percent of people in Canada.
However, your medical records need to prove the severity of your condition and show that it prevents you from working to be awarded disability benefits. If you received a denial on your fibromyalgia-related disability claim, you may be able to challenge the denial through an internal or external appeal.
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Social Security Disability Benefits For Fibromyalgia
The Social Security Administration does not include fibromyalgia in its published Listing of Impairments. Even so, you may still qualify for Social Security Disability Insurance . Social Security will evaluate your medical conditions to see if they meet or equal one of the listings. Even beyond that, you may qualify for disability benefits based on vocational standards.
Workers Compensation Benefits For Fibromyalgia
Workers compensation pays short- and long-term benefits to people injured on the job.
Each province has its own compensation program. To qualify, you must have suffered a workplace injury and worked for a covered employer. Thats right, not all employers are covered.
Its difficult but possible to prove a workplace injury caused or worsened your fibromyalgia. While no one knows the exact cause of fibromyalgia, doctors generally agree that a traumatic event can trigger or exacerbate it.
To succeed in this claim, you need a medical doctor to support your belief that the workplace injury triggered the fibromyalgia or made it permanently worse.
Workers compensation payments overlap with EI, CPP, and short- and long-term disability. This can get complicated, so you should seek legal advice for any concerns about payments. Depending on your province, you may keep some of your CPP disability as well as the workers comp.
If workers compensation denies your claim, then you follow the appeal procedures for your province. These programs also have two levels of appeal, the internal reconsideration and the outside tribunal. In most provinces, this tribunal is called the Workers Compensation Appeals Tribunal .
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Tip : Try To Get A Referral To A Specialist
If your family doctor or internist diagnoses you with fibromyalgia, try to be referred to a specialist, such as an orthopedist or a rheumatologist , who can give you the same diagnosis. You can try seeing a neurologist, since fibromyalgia is now thought to be caused by abnormalities in central pain processing.
Because family doctors sometimes hand out the fibromyalgia label when they can’t otherwise diagnose a patient’s complaints, the value of this diagnosis has become somewhat diluted. The diagnosis can be significantly strengthened, however, and taken more seriously, if the same conclusion is reached by a physician who specializes in bone or tissue disorders, or disorders that involve complaints of pain and fatigue.
If cognitive or mental issues add to your inability to work, a neurologist’s opinion may be helpful as well. Your primary care doctor’s opinion can also be helpful, not so much on the diagnosis of fibromyalgia, but to supplement the rheumatologist’s opinion on the details of your claim and your limitations.
What Medical Conditions Qualify For Disability Benefits
Any medical condition can qualify for disability benefits. Generally speaking, most disability benefits programs in Canada do not give benefits based on a medical diagnosis. Rather, they provide benefits based on the level of disability caused by the medical condition. So the focus will always be on the level of disability caused by your medical condition, rather than only the name of your medical condition or diagnosis. To qualify for benefits, you must show that the level of disability from your medical condition meets the eligibility criteria of the disability benefits plan in question.
Following is a list of common medical conditions that qualify for disability benefits. For each of these conditions we discuss the unique challenges you will face.
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Can You Get Disability Benefits For Fibromyalgia
The SSA first screens all disability applications to see if the applicant has a “medically determinable impairment” that is severe. This means you must have a medical condition that has been diagnosed with objective evidence, such as lab tests and medical “signs” of the illness or disease.
In addition, the impairment must “interfere” with basic work-related activities. At later steps, the SSA will consider whether your limitations actually prevent you from doing any type of work.
But the first step is to get a diagnosis of fibromyalgia from your doctor, and preferably from a rheumatologist.
Va Fibromyalgia Ratings: From 10% To 40% Disabling
With widespread musculoskeletal pain and tender points, with or without associated fatigue, sleep disturbance, stiffness, paresthesia, headache, irritable bowel symptoms, depression, anxiety, or Raynauds-like symptoms.
|Symptoms are constant, or nearly so, and resistant to therapy:||40% rating|
|Symptoms are episodic, with exacerbations often precipitated by environmental or emotional stress or by overexertion, but that are present more than one-third of the time:||20% rating|
|Symptoms require continuous medication for control:||10% rating|
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Struggling To Work With Fibromyalgia Call Us Today For A Free Consultation
Have you recently received a Fibromyalgia diagnosis? Are your symptoms severe enough to prevent you from working? If so, then you may consider filing a Fibromyalgia long term disability claim. At Tucker Law Group, we can help you prepare the strongest claim possible. Our attorneys understand that Fibromyalgia long term disability claims are tough. Thus, we will put our decades of combined knowledge and experience to work for you.
For a free consultation, give us a call at . You can also message us through our online contact page. We provide counsel in all 50 states as our attorneys are licensed in Florida and many federal courts around the country.
Filing An External Appeal
An external appeal may be more effective than an internal appeal because it allows a third party, the court system, to interpret your eligibility for benefits.
After gathering evidence to support your fibromyalgia-based disability claim, your lawyer may be able to negotiate an out-of-court settlement with the insurance carrier.
If the insurance carrier refuses to make a settlement, your lawyer may be able to defend your rights in court. The court may award you compensation if it determines the insurance carrier denied you unfairly.
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Filing An Internal Appeal
Insurance carriers provide an opportunity to file an internal appeal following a denial. This appeal is simply a reconsideration of your claim and supporting information by the insurance company. Unless there is an easy-to-fix technicality in the denial letter, a disability lawyer may determine that an internal appeal is unlikely to change the insurance companys mind.
Our lawyers may be able to help you decide if this is a necessary step or if we need to pursue another option on your behalf.
Tip : Find Out What’s In Your Medical Records
All Social Security disability cases are decided on the basis of medical records, at the initial application level, reconsideration level, and at the hearing level. You shouldn’t apply for disability without knowing what your records state about your condition. Many applicants have been surprised to find that the doctor who claimed to support their case did not indicate the same level of support in his or her treatment notes that he or she submitted to the SSA.
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Denied Disability For Fibromyalgia Dont Give Up
The unfortunate reality is that the majority of people suffering from fibromyalgia, even those who are clearly disabled by the health issue, are denied benefits at first. In fact, most claims must be brought before an Administrative Law Judge at a hearing.
We know that testifying before an administrative law judge is a nerve-racking process. So, in addition to preparing the medical evidence in your case, we will meet with you in person several times prior to the hearing to ensure you are prepared for any and all questions the judge may ask you during the process. Nolan and Shafer, PLC is different than many other nationwide and large firms in that you will have one attorney from the start of your claim until the end.
What To Do If You Have Fibromyalgia And Need Help With Disability Benefits
The single, most important thing you can do is work very closely with your doctor to gather enough medical evidence to prove you suffer from the symptoms of fibromyalgia. Additionally, you will need to show that your fibromyalgia is so severe that it will prevent you from work for at least one full year.
If you have fibromyalgia, winning disability benefits will be a tough battle. You may be turned down the first time you apply. If this happens, you still have the opportunity to appeal to an Administrative Law Judge . If you do appeal and get a hearing, its important that your medical evidence and work history evidence are organized and presented to the judge in a way that prove you can no longer work because of your fibromyalgia.
Winning disability benefits is never as easy as it seems and if you have fibromyalgia, it can be even harder. If you cant work because of your fibromyalgia and live in the New Orleans area, for a free consultation of your disability claim.
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Fibromyalgia And Social Security Disability Benefits
If fibromyalgia disability keeps you from being able to work, you may well be entitled to Social Security Disability benefits. However, winning benefits under the Social Security Administration disability program can be difficult.
The SSA Blue Book lists the approved medical listings for specific impairments. It does not list fibromyalgia.
Since there is no medical listing, the Social Security examiner will attempt to equate your disability with an existing medical listing. They will also consider and give value to other impairments that may be involved, such as:
The determining factor in qualifying for Social Security Disability is whether fibromyalgia affects your ability to work. We have helped many patients win fibromyalgia disability benefits, even though their initial claims were denied.
As Board Certified Social Security Disability attorneys, we can ensure your case will have the best possible chance of success. We work with your doctors to get the medical evidence needed to win your claim. We work with experts to show the impact fibromyalgia has on your ability to work and do daily activities.
We will pursue your disability claim at every step of the process. We will represent you at the Social Security Disability hearing before the administrative law judge and throughout the appeals level.
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Make Sure You Get The Disability Benefits For Fibromyalgia You Are Due
The key to winning disability benefits for fibromyalgia is in how you develop and present your claim. Our disability attorneys have an extensive understanding of the restrictions and limitations that people who suffer from fibromyalgia endure. We will help you take action swiftly, as timing can be critical to your case.
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