Drug Or Alcohol Addiction
Applicants who have struggled with drug and/or alcohol addiction will have an incredibly difficult time being approved for disability benefits. This is because the SSAs medical examiners will assume your symptoms are due to drug or alcohol abuse. To avoid this, before an applicant completes an application, he or she needs to be sober for a substantial time period and must have medical records during this period that proves they are clinically depressed without the usage of drugs or alcohol.
When Depression Is A Disability
The ADA defines a disability as a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits a major life activity. Depression counts as a mental impairment, but it must substantially limit a major life activity to qualify as a disability that your employer must accommodate. Here’s how the law defines these terms.
Is It Hard To Get Ssi For Depression
Like other conditions with symptoms that are based on emotional distress, a disability based on depression can be difficult to prove to the Social Security Administration because the symptoms are often difficult to measure. Additionally, just being diagnosed with depression is not enough to qualify for benefits.
About The Numbers: Mental Illness In The Workplace
- Examples of psychiatric diagnoses include anxiety disorder, depression, attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder , bipolar disorder and schizophrenia.
- Overall, about 44 million adults in the U.S. report having had any mental health condition during the past year, representing about 18.5% of the U.S. population.
- Among these U.S. adults, the National Institute of Mental Health estimates that:
- 18% have an anxiety disorder
- 9.5% have depression
- 4% have attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder
- 2.6% have bipolar disorder
- 1% have schizophrenia
Social Security’s Alternative Listing For Depression
Social Security provides another way to meet the listing for depression for those who can’t show they currently have the functional limitations above because they’ve been living in a highly structured or protected situation or undergoing intense therapy.
If you are in this situation, you may be able to meet a second set of functional criteria. You can do this if your disorder has been medically documented as serious and persistent over a period of at least two years and you have either been living in a highly structured setting or you’ve been receiving ongoing medical treatment, mental health therapy, or psychosocial support that diminishes the symptoms of your mental disorder. You must also show that you have little ability to adapt to demands that are not already part of your daily life or to changes in your environment.
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How Does Depression Affect Daily Life
The Mayo Clinic defines depression as a mood disorder that creates a “persistent feeling of sadness and loss of interest.” According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness , major depression is persistent and can significantly interfere with someone’s moods, thoughts, activities, and behavior. Depression is more than a temporary case of the blues or the blahs: It can significantly disrupt daily life and cause serious symptoms such as sleep disturbances, loss of appetite, feelings of hopelessness and despair, suicidal thoughts, trouble with thinking, concentration, and memory, lack of energy, and loss of interest in normal activities, from exercise to socializing to sex.
Social Security Disability Insurance
SSDI is the first program you may consider if depression has disrupted your ability to work. To qualify for the program, you must:
- prove you havent been able to work for at least 12 months
- have paid Social Security through paycheck deductions for the last 5 out of 10 years
The exact SSDI benefits you receive depend on your individual contributions to the Social Security system during your working years. On average, people on SSDI receive $1,165 per month as of 2014.
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Anxiety Disorders Condition And Symptoms
One of the most common forms of anxiety is generalized anxiety disorder . You must meet at least six of the following symptoms to be diagnosed with the condition.
- A feeling of being on edge or easily startled
- Feeling nervousness, restlessness, or being on edge
- Being easily fatigued
- Difficulty concentrating or mind going blank
- Easily becoming irritable
- Muscle tension;
- Sleep disturbance
It is worth noting that it can result in incapacitating health problems when an anxiety disorder is left untreated. For this reason,;filing for Social Security Disability with an Anxiety Disorder Diagnosis;remains the best decision.;
To meet the;criteria for social assistance, it is essential to note that anxiety disorders often accompany other conditions like bipolar and depression. Therefore, go into the application process fully informed on what you need to list in the medical records.;
What if you dont meet the criteria? Qualifying under a disability listing;is not easy as most people anticipate. In addition, most travelers wonder,;does anxiety count as a disability when flying? The unfortunate truth is that only approximately 8% of anxiety patients fit into the SSDI criteria.;
Get;immediate anxiety treatment;and live a normal life. Click the button below to book your appointment.;
Starting A Disability Claim
Call the SSA at 800-772-1213 to set up an appointment to fill out an application for SSDI or SSI disability benefits. When you fill out your application, include a detailed description of how your depression affects your daily life, your social functioning, and your ability to concentrate and complete tasks quickly, follow directions, and function, and how often you have episodes of worsening symptoms. If you have both depression and a physical impairment that makes it impossible for you to work, consider hiring a disability lawyer to help you file your Social Security claim, or if your initial claim gets denied, to file an appeal with the SSA.
|Take our disability quiz to help you determine whether you qualify for benefits.|
Fayetteville Arkansas Disability Attorneys
Ken Kieklak, Attorney at Law, is an Arkansas Social Security attorney that fights for disabled Arkansans in the Fayetteville area. Ken can help you file your social security claim based on your mental disorder, physical ailments, handicap, or any other disability. Even if your disorder is not on this list, you may still qualify for Social Security. Call 316-0438 today to schedule a free consultation on your Social Security Disability needs.
Contact Handler Henning & Rosenberg Llc
Its been nearly 100 years since our firm first opened its doors. Since that time, weve taken great pride in helping people throughout Pennsylvania through some of the most challenging times of their lives. We know how difficult it can be to apply forSocial Security Disability and to get your application approved. Our lawyers can help you through every step of your depressive disorder disability claim, guiding you toward the benefits you needand rightfully deserve.
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When Is Depression A Disability
As most, if not all, employers will know, employees with disabilities are protected in law in terms of their employment. This has been the case since the introduction of the Disability Discrimination 1995 which has since been replaced by the Equality Act 2010 . As a result, employers cannot treat a disabled employee less favourably because of their disability or for a reason relating to their disability. In addition, employers are under a duty to implement what is commonly known as reasonable adjustments to the workplace and/or to the role being undertaken, if the disability in question places the employee at a substantial disadvantage in comparison to their non-disabled colleagues.
Of course, in order to comply with their legal obligations, employers must have an awareness of their employees disability. Whilst it might be easy to identify disabled employees if they have a physical impairment such as blindness or a condition which prevents the employee from walking, this task becomes more difficult in circumstances where an employee is suffering from a mental impairment such as depression.
Under the former regime of the Disability Discrimination Act 1995, an impairment was said to affect the ability of the person to carry out normal day-to-day activities only if it affected one of the following:
- memory or ability to concentrate, learn or understand;
- perception of the risk of physical danger.
The 2010 Guidance provides the following example:-
Requesting An Accommodation For Depression
If you suffer from depression and you believe you need a reasonable accommodation, speak to your employer. Legally, you are entitled to a reasonable accommodationâa change to the job or the workplaceâthat will allow you to do your job with your disability, unless providing it would cause your employer undue hardship. Reasonable accommodations for depression might include scheduling changes, time off work to attend therapy appointments or for hospitalization, or changes in the way work is assigned, among other things. For more information, see the EEOC’s guidance on depression, PTSD, and other mental health conditions.
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The Symptoms Of Depression And Anxiety
Depression and anxiety are terrible afflictions that can completely turn your life on its head. There are treatments for these illnesses, however often they become long, drawn out intervention plans that may not be completely effective. Dealing with such medical problems can be overwhelming, and adding financial pressures because of lost time at work or medical costs just make the situation worse. Nonetheless, there could be help in the way of payments to you through the Social Security Disability and/or Supplemental Security Income programs, both administered by the Social Security Administration.
Depression is the most common not-imminently fatal medical condition leading to disability in America. The World Health Organization has identified depression as the number one cause of disability in the world with over 300 million sufferers. Depression causes a person to feel a significant state of sadness, guilt, inadequacy, dejection, and despondency. Along with such feelings there may be insomnia, restless sleep, excessive sleep, lack of energy, reduced or no sexual desire, and appetite loss or excessive eating.
Major Depression And Severe Bipolar Disorder Can Sometimes Qualify You For Social Security Disability Benefits
Depressionis a condition that is often not taken seriously enough because peopledo not understand the difference between having an occasional bout of”the blues,” which is natural and temporary, and having a major depressive disorder . MDDs are ongoing and stem from a biochemicalimbalance in the brain. They can’t be shrugged off with positivethinking, nor are they a sign of an individual’s weakness.
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Trauma And Stress Disorders
These disorders may have similar results to obsessive-compulsive disorders and neurological disorders, but they are often caused by some significantly traumatic event or because of extreme stress. Post-traumatic stress disorder is the most common of these disorders. Often, after witnessing or being involved in a very traumatic event, people suffering from these disorders find themselves facing symptoms that include depression, flashbacks, lack of interest or enjoyment, constant distress, aggression, overreactions, fear, anger, and trouble sleeping.
These disorders can often place a huge toll on a persons day-to-day life, and may make daily tasks and work tasks nearly impossible. Often, people with a history of military service or victims of traumatic accidents or crime face these kinds of disorders. If their case is severe enough, qualifying for SSD may help support them.
Correct Treatment But No Documentation
Insurance companies will deny many claims because of a lack of medical documentation. So, even if your doctor follows best practices and you follow their advice if it isnt recorded, its like it never happened.
Its common in cases of depression for the insurance company to ask for your doctors clinical records. They do this to see if the doctor is following best practices adjusting medication and making appropriate recommendations. If the doctors medical file doesnt document whats happening, then the insurance company will deny your claim.
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Qualifying For Disability Based On Reduced Functional Capacity
If you don’t qualify under the SSA’s requirements for major depression, above, the SSA will next consider your depression symptoms and to what extent they impair your ability to do the usual activities of daily living, and if there is any kind of work you can be expected to do. The SSA will give you a rating of the type of work it thinks you can do . This is called your residual functional capacity , and in the case of depression, it’s called a mental RFC rather than a physical RFC.
If the SSA finds that you can do at least unskilled work, as is likely if you didn’t meet the official listing above, you won’t be granted benefits. But if the SSA finds that you cannot perform even unskilled work , the SSA might grant you benefits under a “medical-vocational allowance.” However, most claimants applying for disability benefits for depression either qualify under the official listing or don’t qualify at all.
But if you have any type of physical impairment in addition to depression, this can change. For example, if you get a mental RFC for unskilled work and a physical RFC for sedentary work, there might be few jobs you can do in this category, and you might be able to qualify for benefits under a medical-vocational allowance.
Schizophrenia And Other Psychotic Disorders
These disorders are listed under § 12.03 of the SSAs Mental Disorders listings. Schizophrenia and other similar disorders like schizoaffective disorder, delusional disorder, and psychotic disorder could be a mental disorder of their own or be caused by other medical conditions. These disorders often involve symptoms such as catatonia, social withdrawal, the inability to achieve goals, and disorganized thoughts, speech, or behavior. If these disorders are severe enough to affect your work, you may qualify for disability.
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Employment Insurance Sickness Benefits
EI sickness benefits are a temporary disability benefit. They are paid through the federal governments employment insurance program. EI pays 55% of your salary for 15 weeks.
To qualify, you must have paid into the EI program recently. You pay through deductions from your paycheque. These are automatic. So, if you got an official paycheque, you paid into the EI program.
You apply for EI benefits online through Service Canada. You can apply from home or at any Service Canada office. Your doctor needs to fill out a form to confirm that you cant work for the 15 weeks that EI covers. And finally, your employer will need to issue a Record of Employment to confirm your sick leave.
Please note: If you qualify for short-term disability, then you cant claim EI benefits at the same time.
You can learn more about EI by visiting our article on the EI sickness benefits program.
Get Appropriate Treatment For Depression
When evaluating your depression long term disability claim, the insurance company will want to see youre receiving appropriate treatment. Even if your claim is approved, they will still require proof of ongoing treatment for your condition.;
;The insurance company can easily use non-compliance and lack of appropriate care as a reason to deny or terminate your depression long term disability claim.
To demonstrate appropriate treatment, your treatment team should include specialists such as a psychiatrist and/or psychologist.; Treatment options may include:
Again, it is important to follow your doctors recommendation.; Your insurance company will want to see you are in treatment and doing everything in your power to improve your symptoms.
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What Is A Substantial Limitation
You don’t have to be completely incapable of sleeping, concentrating, or thinking, for example, to be substantially limited in performing these major life activities. Under the ADA, you are substantially limited if your ability to perform these tasks is limited in comparison to the general population. In making this determination, your employer should consider the manner, duration, and condition in which you can perform the activity. For example, if you can sleep for only a few hours a night, your ability to sleep is substantially limited. If it’s very difficult for you to concentrate, and you can’t focus for more than short periods of time, your ability to think is substantially limited.
The ADA does not consider “mitigating measures”âmedication or other devices or assistance you might use to ameliorate the effects of your disabilityâwhen determining whether you are substantially limited. For example, if you have suffered several episodes of major depression, but your condition is currently controlled with medication, you still have a disability even though you may show no signs of impairment. The key is how your condition affects you when it is active and untreated.
Can I Get A Disability For Anxiety And Panic Attacks
Does anxiety count as a disability? In other terms does anxiety guarantee eligibility for SSD and SSI benefits? In some cases, anxiety is accompanied by recurring panic attacks and unexpected freeze reactions due to fear that they will be unable to breathe or die. All of these feelings are triggered by particular objects, situations, or even thoughts.;
Other than that, you might notice social withdrawal, phobias, and compulsive disorder. Mainly, this is characterized by uncontrollable obsessive thoughts and repetitive behaviors like extreme orderliness or hand washing. Even if anxiety and panic attacks can be debilitating sometimes, it is possible to continue;working while receiving benefits.;
Most advisable, choose a job in an office building, or something close by that has scheduled hours. In the process, do not forget on;determining your residential functional capacity. This boils down to anything that causes pain or limits you mentally or physically in accomplishing your tasks in a work setting.
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