If you have amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), which is also called Lou Gehrig’s disease, it is part of the Social Security Administration’s (SSA) list of compassionate allowances and can automatically qualify for disability benefits.
Compassionate allowances are conditions that are severe in nature, often terminal, and disabling. The list of compassionate allowances includes cancers, adult brain disorders, and rare conditions that affect adults and children. If you provide proof that you have a condition on the list for compassionate allowances, your disability claim could be approved more quickly.
What Is The Compassionate Allowance List?
The compassionate allowance list (CAL) is a list of terminal or life-altering medical conditions that render individuals unable to work.
If you have a condition on the list, you will just need to provide the basic supporting evidence that confirms the diagnosis, including test results and medical records, to have your claim approved.
If you file a disability claim because of ALS, it will get expedited attention, which usually means you can get a decision and be awarded disability benefits within a month of applying. This is a much shorter timeframe than it takes to consider a claim that is not on the CAL list.
Qualifying For Disability With ALS
ALS affects the neurons on the spinal cord. There is no cure for ALS. Usually, the first symptom is muscle weakness and twitching in the arms and legs.
The condition spreads throughout the body causing difficulty swallowing and breathing. Speech problems, muscle contractions and cramps, and muscle atrophy progress then the individual loses his or her ability to breathe.
There is no cure for ALS, and it will eventually lead to death. To qualify for disability benefits, you will need to provide medical tests and records that confirm the diagnosis.
Medical Evidence Needed To Qualify
Although ALS qualifies through the compassionate allowance program, you will need to provide supporting evidence and documentation for your claim.
You will need to provide copies of medical tests that confirm your diagnosis. You must provide medical record that show a history of your symptoms.
You will need to provide neurological testing results that are consistent with a diagnosis of ALS along with results of electrophysical and neuroimaging tests to rule out other conditions.
You should also provide evidence of nerve conduction studies or electromyography to help support your diagnosis if you have them available.
If you can prove that you have been diagnosed with ALS, you can succeed with your claim. While ALS is on the CAL, you will not have your claim approved if you cannot provide hard medical evidence that backs up your claim.
Be sure to talk with your physician and make sure you have all the required evidence in your medical files.
The Next Steps To Take
If you have been diagnosed with ALS and are ready to apply for disability benefits, you should enlist the help of a disability lawyer. An attorney will review the details of your claim and make sure you have all your evidence ready for review.