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Social Security adds illnesses to Compassionate Allowances list

Anyone who has attempted to apply for Social Security disability benefits knows that it's not an easy process. Whether you're unable to work due to an injury, illness or other condition, it can be extremely frustrating to take the time to painstakingly fill out an application for benefits, only to wait for months or years before receiving them. The majority of first-time applications are denied, which can be disheartening when your condition is already consuming so much of your time, energy and money.

Fortunately, for those with some disabling medical conditions, there exists the Social Security Administration's Compassionate Allowances list. This list includes life-threatening diseases such as cancer, rare brain disorders affecting adults and diseases that strike children. Social Security disability applicants who have one or more of the conditions on the Compassionate Allowances list are eligible for an expedited process, which allows them to receive the benefits they need in less than two weeks.

The SSA determines the conditions that fall under this list by analyzing information it receives from experts in the medical and scientific communities, research from the National Institutes of Health and Social Security and Disability Determination Services communities. It also collects feedback from public outreach hearings held by the SSA commissioner.

Recently a handful of outreach hearings were held on conditions that included cancers, rare diseases, autoimmune diseases and several brain conditions such as traumatic brain injury, dementia and schizophrenia. These hearings resulted in the addition of 35 conditions, bringing the number on the list to 200. This is welcome news to those who suffer from these medical problems; it means they no longer have to wait indefinitely for the benefits they need to survive without the ability to work.

People who suffer from serious medical conditions may not realize that their illnesses are included on the Compassionate Allowances list, which can be found on the official SSA website. Whether or not your condition is on the list, you may be in desperate need of financial help if your disability prevents you from holding a job. To get more in-depth information on your Social Security benefit options and to fill out an application for disability benefits, you may want to consult an attorney who focuses on Social Security disability insurance for illnesses.

Source:, "Social Security: Fast-tracked disability process adds 35 medical conditions," Jan. 17, 2013

  • Our firm is dedicated to helping disabled Georgia residents obtain the financial security they need in the form of Social Security benefits. To learn more about our practice, visit our Atlanta Social Security disability page.

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