Social Security Disability Insurance Benefits for People with Physical or Mental Impairments

Trusted Maryville Disability lawyers serving clients throughout East Tennessee

To qualify for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI), you must first have been diagnosed with a medical condition or injury that has lasted, or will last, for one year or longer, and prevent you from being able to do your previous job, or another type of work. The disabling condition or impairment can be mental, physical, or both. There are a few medical conditions that the Social Security Administration (SSA) considers automatically eligible for benefits, but there is no guarantee that your application will be approved simply because you have one.

The skilled Maryville Social Security Disability lawyers at Shepherd and Associates, P.C. are your advocates when you need to apply for benefits. We guide you through every step of the process from application through appeals.

Commonly approved physical impairments

To prove the extent of your physical impairments, your doctor will have to complete some documents and submit medical records that support their diagnosis of the disease, or the severity of the injury. The SSA will also consider they ways in which your medical condition limits your ability to work and to participate in your life. They will also review the types of medical treatments you have undergone and how you have responded to them.

The following is a list of physical impairments for adults from the SSA “Blue Book.” Applicants can look up their condition, and find out whether it is one that the SSA recognizes as automatically disabling, and what symptoms or severity of the condition you have at the time of application. The categories are as follows:

  • Musculoskeletal System
  • Special Senses and Speech
  • Respiratory Disorders
  • Cardiovascular System
  • Digestive System
  • Genitourinary Disorders
  • Hematological Disorders
  • Skin Disorders
  • Endocrine Disorders
  • Congenital Disorders that Affect Multiple Body Systems
  • Neurological Disorders
  • Cancer (Malignant Neoplastic Diseases)
  • Immune System Disorders (New)

What the Blue Books says about mental impairments

The SSA’s Blue Book also contains guidelines for which medical conditions may qualify for Disability benefits. There are currently nine categories:

  • Neurocognitive disorders
  • Schizophrenia spectrum and other psychotic disorders
  • Depressive, bipolar and related disorders
  • Intellectual disorder
  • Anxiety and obsessive-compulsive disorders
  • Somatic symptom and related disorders
  • Personality and impulse-control disorders
  • Autism spectrum disorder
  • Neurodevelopmental disorders
  • Eating disorders
  • Trauma- and stressor-related disorders

After being diagnosed with a condition, your medical records will be considered to see if you meet the criteria, and if your condition thoroughly impairs you to the point where you are unable to engage in gainful activity. Additionally, you must show the SSA that you are receiving treatment and that you are complying with your doctor’s orders.

Physical and mental impairments for children

The SSA Blue Book has a Part B, which covers a listing of impairments for childhood medical conditions, and the medical criteria that apply to the evaluation of disabilities in children younger than age 18.  For disability benefits for a child under age 18, you would apply for SSI benefits and complete a Child Disability Report, which has questions about how the child’s physical or mental impairment prevents them from functioning.

Disabled children of low income families may qualify for Supplemental Security Income until they reach age 18, when they may be able to collect as an adult.

Work with a capable Maryville Social Security Disability lawyer

Your Maryville Social Security Disability Insurance attorney at Shepherd and Associates, P.C. is here to help make sure that you get all the legal support you need to apply for disability benefits. You never have to worry about paying for a Disability lawyer up front because we take cases on contingency. We get paid when your application is approved. You are welcome to call and schedule a free consultation to discuss your case at: 865-225-9655 or complete our contact form. We represent clients in Madisonville, Oak Ridge, Lenoir City and throughout East Tennessee.