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Can a worker with a skin disorder qualify for SSD benefits?

A skin disorder or injury can be more than uncomfortable or unattractive. It can be debilitating. When such an impairment affects one's ability to work, it can be financially destructive. Fortunately, workers in Georgia have all contributed to the Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) program. In cases their ability to work is impaired for a long period of time, a worker may qualify for SSDI Benefits for injuries to or disorders of their skin.

For a skin disorder or injury to qualify for benefits, it must fall within the Social Security Administration's (SSA) specific government guidelines. The guidelines contain a list of several specific disorders, such as dermatitis and burns, but there is also considerable room to assess a disorder or injury based on whether it's chronic or acute, how it affects function and how treatable it is. All impairments must be supported by medical evidence.

The SSA will make a benefits decision by determining the severity of a claimant's skin disorder and how it affects their ability to function in a normal manner. Among other things, SSA will look at how extensive skin lesions may be, the frequency of flare-ups, pain, other symptoms experienced and how the disorder is being treated. Burns, disorders that affect joint mobility or that occur on the palms of hands or soles of feet are examples of maladies that may qualify.

Unfortunately, the application process for SSDI benefits can be lengthy, confusing and sometimes, frustrating -- especially if a claimant requires a hearing before qualifying for benefits. A recent report from the Government Accountability Office recently found that applicants with a representative were three times more likely to be awarded benefits than unrepresented claimants. For this reason, it can be important to involve a seasoned SSDI benefits attorney at the beginning of the process.

Source: SSA.gov, "8.00 Skin Disorders - Adult," accessed on Feb. 18, 2018

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