Only those with serious medical conditions can receive Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits. To qualify, individuals have to have made adequate payroll contributions just Social Security throughout their working life. They will also have to apply and show that they have a condition that meets the criteria set by the Social Security Administration (SSA).
There are plenty of myths floating around about what kind of conditions qualify for SSDI and what ones do not. Some people believe that only specific, listed medical conditions will secure someone benefits.
However, it is possible for someone with an unusual and therefore unlisted condition to receive benefits. It is also equally possible for someone with a frequently approved condition to not qualify. How can you determine if it’s worth your time to apply for SSDI after your diagnosis?
It has to last long enough to qualify
One of the most important considerations when trying to determine if you qualify for SSDI involves the prognosis for your condition. How long it will last will directly impact whether you can get benefits or not.
Generally, you need to have a condition that persists for at least 12 months, if not the rest of your life. People with terminal conditions can qualify even if they likely won’t live for another 12 months. When your condition improves or you can return to work, you may lose your eligibility for benefits.
The condition must be quite severe enough to qualify
For someone to receive SSDI, they need to have a truly disabling condition. You need both an official diagnosis and medical documentation explaining the impact of the condition on your work or independent living.
Applicants for SSDI typically need to have severe symptoms that mean that they can no longer work at any kind of job or live independently without some kind of secondary support. Knowing that your condition is that severe isn’t enough. You also need details in the medical documentation that you submit to the SSA that show how this condition impairs you.
Understanding if you meet the criteria to qualify for SSDI benefits can help motivate you to apply and appeal if necessary to get the benefits you need.