Speak With A Disability Attorney
Disability claims are complex. To get your claim on the right track, you should consult with a disability lawyer. When you retain an attorney, you will not have to pay anything out of pocket. Instead, your attorney will not be paid until you win your claim and receive backpay. The SSA guidelines indicate that an attorney will receive 25 percent of your backpay, but the pay is capped at $6,000. You will sign an agreement with the attorney when you hire him.
Claimants who have legal representation are much more likely to be approved for disability benefits. Disability lawyers know how to proceed with the claim and what evidence is needed to show the severity of a medical problem and get your case approved. Your attorney will gather supporting documentation and will review your file to make sure the SSA has access to the records that tell them the severity of your condition and how you are affected.
Lawyers will file any necessary appeals and will also work to prepare you for questioning should your case advance to the hearing level. To make sure you have the help you need to pursue your disability claim, you should complete the Free Case Evaluation Form on this page to share the details of your case with a disability lawyer in your area. You can start your disability claim online at the Social Security website at ssa.gov or by calling 1-800-772-1213 and talking with a representative.
Can I Get Disability For Neck Pain
The focus of any disability claim based on neck pain is on the underlying condition that is causing the neck pain and/or neck problems. Establishing proof of the root causes of neck pain should be the focus of the medical information section of an application for benefits. This is done via the medical records, as ones neck pain is but a symptom of the underlying causes of neck problems.
Reports of severe pain are not enough to meet the requirements for disability benefits. You need objective evidence such as a physical evaluation of your range of motion and ability to perform work activities. The results of imaging tests used in your diagnoses, such as a CT or MRI scan, may also help you qualify for benefits. If you are using an assistive device or have made changes to your daily activities you may consider using a sworn statement to support your case.
Find Out If You Can Apply For Social Security Benefits For Cervical Radiculopathy
To find out if you are eligible, schedule an appointment with The Good Law Group right away. We have helped a huge number of people to successfully apply for;SSDI. When you meet a member of our team for a case evaluation, we will let you know whether your case of Cervical Radiculopathy is likely to meet the eligibility requirements for receiving SSDI.
Get in touch today to take the first step in the application process.
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Meeting Other Disability Listings For Neck Problems
Social Security has removed a related medical listing from the musculoskeletal listings: the listing for “spinal arachnoiditis.” Arachnoiditis is a painful disorder caused by inflammation in the spine. Someone with cervical arachnoiditis might feel severe stinging and burning pain . Arachnoiditis is often caused by complications from spinal procedures, but it can also be caused by cervical stenosis or disc disease. Social Security says that arachnoiditis should now be analyzed under the neurological listings, specifically listing 11.08 for spinal cord disorders. For more information, see our article on getting disability for spinal arachnoiditis.
Additionally, as the causes and symptoms of neck pain and problems can vary greatly, other disability listings may apply to some individuals who suffer from neck pain and problems, such as:
Social Security Disability Insurance Claims
To be approved for Social Security Disability benefits, you will need to show that you meet the requirements of one of Social Securitys official disability listings or prove that you do not have the capacity to return to work because your neck pain or cervical conditions are so severe. In addition, your condition must last, or be expected to last, 12 months or more.
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Contact A Long Term Disability Insurance Attorney
The knowledgeable and skilled long term disability attorneys at Abell and Capitan Law are ready to help you get the benefits you need if you are living with cervical radiculopathy. We understand the impact that this condition can have on your life, and we are here help you get the benefits you need and deserve.
We are ready to fight for you. Call us today at 419-7888 to schedule your 100-percent free initial consultation.
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Is Radiculopathy A Va Disability
Yes, Radiculopathyis a VA disability.
Radiculopathy is most often rated under CFR 38, Part 4, VA Schedule of Ratings, diagnostic codes 8510, 8610, and 8710 for the upper and middle radicular groups.
Paralysis of the Sciatic Nerve, also known as Sciatica, is the #7 most common VA disability and is rated under diagnostic codes 8520, 8620, and 8720.
VA disability ratings for Radiculopathy range from 0% to 90% and depend upon the Frequency, Severity, and Duration of your symptoms, meaning the more severe your symptoms, the higher the VA rating for Radiculopathy.
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Pinched Nerves In The Cervical Thoracic And Lumbar Regions
Doctors look at your back in three sections. The cervical area is around your neck and shoulders. The thoracic area is in the middle down to your lower back. Lumbar is the region of your lower back all the way down to your tailbone. Each one of these areas connects nerves from your brain to all over your body.;
Medical Qualifications And The Ssa Evaluation
While there is not a specific listing in the Blue Book for neck pain, the listing that is for disorders of the spine does address many causes of neck problems and neck pain. If you think you qualify because your severe neck pain and problems meet the requirements of this listing because of cervical spine listing, the SSA may not even have to consider how your activities are limited by your neck pain and problems. You may automatically be approved for Social Security disability benefits.
To meet the requirements of the listing, you have to show that the nerve root or spinal cord are impacted and you have either spinal nerve root compression pain, muscle weakness that results in loss of reflexes or feeling in those muscles, and limited spine movement. Another option is that you suffer from a painful disorder caused by spine inflammation that makes you have to change your position more than once every two hours.
You have to provide adequate medical evidence to show that you do indeed meet the requirements of this particular listing. Your documentation must include evidence of an in-depth examination of your spine, documentation of your necks range of motion, lab findings and medical imaging that shows your specific impairment.
While your neck pain could be caused by a variety of things, there may be other listings that could be helpful in your path to disability approval. Your neck pain could fall under:
- Section 1.02 Joint Dysfunction
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Objective Evidence Is Very Important In A Claim For Neck Pain
Disability insurance and Social Security Disability neck pain claims are often denied due to the reasoning that there is no objective evidence found to support the claimants alleged restrictions and limitations caused by his or her neck pain. As such, your application should include extensive medical documentation to support your claim for disability. Medical evidence for a neck pain problem may include:
- Imaging test results and other medical tests documenting the organic causes of neck pain and spine problems, such as a herniated disc or degenerative disc disease;
- Evidence of epidurals, nerve blocks, nerve burning, trigger point injections, and/or injections performed under fluoroscopy;
- Notes from physical medical examinations and doctor visits;
- Treatment records, including notes from physical therapy, medications, and other remedies pursued;
- Statements from your treating physician identifying the symptoms you experience and their severity and duration, as well as the overall prognosis for your health condition; and
- Records showing your health condition has not improved despite following physician-recommended treatments.
Soft Tissues Of The Cervical Spinal Region:
The soft tissues of the cervical spinal region include the muscles, overlying fascia, tendons and ligaments.
There are many layers of muscles in the cervical spinal region controlling the movement of the neck. Each muscle is attached to a bone with a strong fibrous cord called a tendon.
Fascia is a sheet of fibrous tissue which separates, encloses and stabilizes muscles.
A ligament is a band of fibers which serves to connect bones and stabilize joints.
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Talk To A Disability Lawyer
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Proving Disability For Neck Pain And Cervical Disorders
In efforts to deny these disability claims, insurers often consider the cervical spine to be a single organ. Our disability lawyers understand that the cervical spine is a complex system of biomechanics and vital anatomy.
Proper medical evidence, routine doctors visits and treatment, and thorough patient history is the basis for successfully proving long term disability to an insurance company and to the court.
- Imaging tests such as x-ray, CT scans and MRI reinforce evidence of structural damage, and offer supportive medical data along with your medical history and physical examination.
- Other diagnostics such as electromyography can help uncover nerve conduction problems, while blood tests may aid in exposing infectious conditions or serious inflammatory disorders.
- Discography helps establish whether the vertebral discs in the cervical spine are a source of pain.
We can help you with all of this, and we make the process easy for you.
Your insurance company may require that you submit to a Functional Capacity Exam . When handled improperly, the FCE can render results the insurer can actually use against you, and to contest your treating doctors statements.
Our attorneys are prepared for this and other bad faith techniques used by insurance companies. We counter such efforts by initiating properly-run FCE exams, and evaluate your Residual Functional Capacity to give us a true measure of your capacity for full-time work.
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Lower Parts Of Your Back
The sacrum is the region of the back that connects to your hips and pelvis. The coccyx is your tailbone and its at the very bottom. These do not often get involved with bulging discs or radiculopathy, but they can be injured, dislocated, or affected by arthritis.;;
When Your Neck Pain Or Cervical Spine Disorder Makes It Impossible To Work
If your neck pain or cervical spine disorder doesnt meet a listing, you will have to prove that you:
- Cant return to the lightest job you held in the 15 years before you became disabled , and
- There isnt any other work you can do in the mythical national economy based on your age, education, transferable skills and your residual functional capacity .
SSA or, ultimately an Administrative Law Judge, will answer those questions by determining your residual functional capacity. Your RFC is what you can do despite your neck pain or cervical spine disorder.
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How Veterans Get A Radiculopathy Diagnosis
Your VA doctor or private physician may take several stepsto diagnose radiculopathy:
- A physical exam and physical tests may be used to check your muscle strength and reflexes. If you have pain with certain movements, this may help your doctor identify the affected nerve root.
- Imaging tests, such as an X-ray, CT scan or MRI scan, are used to better see the structures in the problem area.
- Nerve conduction studies, along with electromyography, can also be used to help pinpoint whether the problem is neurological or muscular.
What Spinal Conditions Qualify For Disability
If you have a condition of the spine that makes it impossible for you to work and earn a living, you may qualify for Social Security Disability benefits. The Social Security Administration has two programs, Social Security Disability Insurance and Supplemental Security Income .
Both these programs have strict medical criteria that must be met, and you must have a condition that will leave you unable to work for a year or longer, or that is expected to end in your death.
There are dozens of spinal disorders, and many of these conditions are specifically listed in the SSA medical guide, which is called the Blue Book. Even if your condition itself isnt specifically listed in the Blue Book, you still may qualify for benefits using a medical-vocational allowance or the residual functional capacity .
Back Conditions That Get A Higher Va Disability Compensation
The general minimum for undiagnosed back pain veterans disability benefits is 10%. These diagnosed and service-connected disabilities can get you a higher rating.
- Degenerative Joint Disease
While not all of these are exclusive back pains, they can all point to conditions in the spine that would warrant a higher VA rating.
Which Fingers Are Affected By Cervical Radiculopathy
For example, the most common type of radiculopathy affecting C7 can create pain and weakness radiating from the neck to the triceps, hands and the middle finger. Another common cervical radiculopathy diagnosis in C6 can present as radiating pain from the biceps to the wrists and the thumb/ index finger .
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Experienced In Cervical Or Lumbar Radiculopathy Disability Claims
Disability insurance companies are vigilant about radiculopathy claims. They insist in a large number of radiological tests to prove that there is any kind of a spinal injury.
Disability lawyers Frankel & Newfield have represented many people who suffer from cervical or lumbar radiculopathy and have had their disability claims challenged. We know the way that disability insurance companies review these claims, what they look for as they try to deny benefits, and how they use medical examinations to attempt to show that the person is not really disabled.
Objective Evidence Of A Neck Pain Disability Claim Is Very Important
Insurance companies often turn people down because neck problems are common, especially as we grow older. Disability companies will often argue that there is no objective evidence to support restrictions and limitations caused by neck pain. Examples of objective evidence of a neck disorder could be an X-ray, MRI, CT-Scan, EMG, nerve conduction study, discogram or injections performed under fluoroscopy. Objective testing in all neck disability claims is essential. Positive finding are not required to collect, but a disability claim is much more challenging if the objective testing does not have any abnormalities. There are a high percentage of claimants that have normal objective testing but still have debilitating pain. Some long term disability policies require positive findings of radiculopathy or myelopathy in order to receive benefits for longer than 24 months. Our lawyers have handled thousands of neck disorder claims and have an in-depth understanding of all disorders of the cervical spine. It is important to treat with a doctor that knows how to administer the proper diagnostic testing.
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When Your Rfc Says You Should Be Allowed Benefits
If the SSA determines there are no jobs you can be expected to do with your RFC, there’s a chance you could qualify for disability benefits under a “medical-vocational allowance.” Most people with back problems and post-surgical problems who are approved for Social Security disability benefits are approved under a medical-vocational allowance. However, your chances of getting disability through a medical-vocational allowance are low unless you are over 55. For instance, if the SSA says you can do medium work, you won’t be considered disabled unless you’re older than 55, have less than a 6th grade education, and have limited skills. In most other cases, if you can do medium work, the SSA will presume that you can learn and do a new job. For more information on how your RFC affects your chance of a medical-vocational allowance, see our article on Disability Determination for Back Problems.
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If Your Back Pain Or Neck Pain Qualify As A Disability Under The Ada You Are Entitled To A Reasonable Accommodation From Your Employer
By Lisa Guerin, J.D.
Do you suffer from back pain that interferes with your ability to work? If so, you’re not alone. According to the most recent statistics from the Centers for Disease Control, almost 30% of American adults report low back pain. And, almost 15% report neck pain. These conditions can interfere with sleep, make basic work tasks difficult, and get in the way of our enjoyment of our everyday lives.
Depending on the symptoms and severity of back and neck pain, these conditions can qualify as disabilities under the Americans with Disabilities Act . Why is this important? Because employers have a legal obligation to make reasonable accommodations for disabilities under the ADA. If your back or neck pain is a disability, you may be entitled to accommodations like light duty work, time off, assistive devices , and other modifications.
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