Cancer and Social Security Disability. There are so many types of cancer with varying degrees of severity that it can be difficult to know what qualifies you for Social Security disability. Just a diagnosis of cancer itself usually is not going to get you disability benefits. Medical documentation is needed to prove the type and the severity of your condition.
The Social Security Administration (SSA) analyzes cancer under Listing 13.00 (Malignant Neoplastic Disease). If you take the time to read through this Listing, you can see there are very specific criteria needed to find a person disabled. Sometimes a person does not have exactly what this Listing calls for, but the SSA may agree that they functionally equal the Listing instead.
While a listing may be difficult to meet or equal, many times the SSA believes your capacity to work is so diminished by residual limitations that you simply cannot work a full-time job. Many of my clients complain of residual effects including neuropathy, cognitive issues, decreased energy, or muscle weakness, among others.
In severe cases when cancer is considered terminal, the SSA can grant disability benefits through a process called Compassionate Allowance. If the SSA can quickly identify your condition as being this severe, it can expedite your claim. This can eliminate the long process of appeals and hearings to get the benefits you are entitled to. Your Social Security Disability lawyer can better explain the specific information necessary to be granted a Compassionate Allowance.
With the varying types of cancer, each case is distinctly different. Solid medical testing and documentation can greatly enhance your chances of winning your Social Security Disability claim. Medical source statements from a treating physician can improve your chances of receiving Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and/or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) payments. It is in your best interest to be proactive with your claim for benefits. It is important to file appeals on time, get appropriate medical care, and tell your physician what problems you are experiencing. Social Security Disability Attorneys are paid on a contingency basis and may be able to answer many of the questions you have.
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Author: Scott Lewis