If you have been diagnosed with degenerative disc disease, which means you are probably not able to earn an income, you may qualify for disability benefits to cover you for the financial hardship you have to encounter due to the degenerative disc disease.
The Initial Application for Disability Benefits for Degenerative Disc Disease
There are two types of disability benefits that might be available to anyone who has been diagnosed with degenerative disc disease.
These benefits are administered by the Social Security Administration (SSA).
The first type is based on Social Security Disability Insurance and your eligibility depends on how many work credits you have accumulated when paying your taxes.
The second isn’t tied to work credits but is based on financial need. Before you apply for any disability benefit you need to prove you are disabled and are unable to work for at least 12 months.
The more advanced degenerative disc disease is listed in the Blue Book, in section 1.04.
Even though its presence suggests that you would automatically meet the requirements that make you eligible for disability benefits, this isn’t always the reality.
Typically, you might well be asked to provide more proof that supports your disability benefit’s claim.
The SSA will want to view your medical records, including CT and MRI scans, which show the date you first became disabled with degenerative disc disease.
You will have to prove you are unable to carry out the work you did before becoming disabled and that the disability will last at least 12 months.
Before you apply, make sure you have the names and contact details of all physicians and clinics you've visited throughout the last 5 years.
Whether you are offered disability benefits depends partly on what your physician knows about your degenerative disc disease and whether s/he considers you are fit enough to go to work.
There are three methods available to apply for Social Security benefits.
You may file an application online which is suitable for applicants who have built up the required work credits.
You may also call the Social Security office to book an appointment or go to your local Social Security office without arranging an appointment in advance.
If you are denied disability benefits for your degenerative disc disease, you may make a request for reconsideration.
Request for Reconsideration With Degenerative Disc Disease
If you decide to file an appeal for disability benefits because your request for reconsideration has not been successful,you will need to present your disability case to an administrative law judge (ALJ), Arranging the date and the hearing itself are both conducted at the Office of Disability Adjudication and Review (ODAR).
The most common reason for a disability benefits application being denied is due to the lack of evidence proving you are disabled by the degenerative disc disease.
Before the hearing date you should get more medical tests done to prove the presence and pain caused by the degenerative disc disease, such as x-rays and MRIs.
Also, you could provide proof that you need an assistive device like a wheelchair to aid your mobility.
You may also decide to get a Residual Functional Capacity (RFC) filled in by your doctor.
The SSA provides the form and it requires a detailed description of your disability such as how long you can remain in a squat position and how heavy a weight you can carry and for what length of time.
If all fails with the ALJ you can use the Appeals Council as another opportunity to win your disability benefits claim.
You are given 60 days from the ALJ decision to request a review to the Appeal’s Council.
The role of the Appeal’s Council is to determine if the ALJ has made any error when making the decision.
If a decision is made you don’t wish to accept you can seek help from the Federal District Court where many claims are won.
Help With Disability Application Process for Degenerative Disc Disease.
An experienced disability lawyer can work on your behalf to get your disability benefits entitlement and help you file an appeal if your claim is denied.
Free Case Evaluation
It is important that you seek help from an attorney with your Social Security application process. Take action and get a free evaluation today!