Living with diabetes can be indescribably challenging for those afflicted with the disease. This condition can significantly alter your life, not only concerning your diet but your ability to participate in regular activities as well. For instance, diabetes can compromise your ability to work normally, a circumstance that leads many to wonder if they can be compensated in the form of disability benefits. While this is a possibility, there are many things to be aware of before you file a claim. There’s much you need to know about building your case for disability benefits as a diabetic person.
What to Know When Filing for Disability with Diabetes
Typically, those that qualify for disability benefits with diabetes are individuals whose condition has not responded to typical treatment methods. For example, if your diabetes has not improved or changed in any way in response to significant lifestyle changes or prescribed medication, you may qualify for financial support. Further, conditions that have progressed to the point of severely interfering with the individual’s quality of life provide substantial cause for disability benefits.
Still, even if these examples are reflective of your circumstances, you may still face challenges in your attempts to procure benefits. Why? The disbursement of disability benefits depends on several factors, not your diabetic condition alone. For instance, depending on the stage of progression of your diabetes and the extent to which it interferes with daily activities and professional work, you may have a higher chance of success with your claim.
Why all these caveats? Well, you must keep in mind that the Social Security Administration (SSA) no longer considers diabetes to be a disability in and of itself. The way in which the condition affects you is where considerations of disability come into play, especially if it leads to any of the following medical conditions:
- Kidney failure
- Problems with vision
- Nerve damage
- Heart disease
- Skin damage and infections
- Peripheral artery disease
If any of these conditions were to develop, you would almost certainly have a successful claim.
Meeting SSA Requirements for Diabetes
Firstly, when filing for disability benefits as someone afflicted by diabetes, you must prove two things in your documentation:
- That you meet at least one of the SSA’s “Listings.”
- Your condition has rendered you notably impaired or has significantly compromised your “Residual Functional Capacity.”
SSA Listings are certain conditions that the Administration considers to be so severe that they do not allow the afflicted individual to work on a full-time basis. There are numerous categories to sift through, none of which recognize diabetes on its own as a justifiable condition for benefits. The Listings include Group 1.00, for diabetic individuals who have experienced amputations as a result of their condition. There are also Groups 2.00 and 4.00 for internal conditions such as vision impairment and cardiovascular complications.
You will have to read through the Group descriptions to know how to develop your claim. If you are struggling to determine whether you qualify for benefits based on the above considerations, get in touch with a disability lawyer. They will guide you through the SSA criteria and determine how to develop a case for you to receive this help to make your life even a little easier.