Q I have heart failure and cannot do strenuous work. My work history is mostly office jobs. Does this mean I will not qualify for SSDI?
Heart failure occurs when the heart cannot pump enough blood to the body and the muscles and organs don’t receive enough oxygen to perform as they should. People with heart failure often find it difficult to work. They tire easily and may lack the stamina and endurance to perform even sedentary work. Social Security Disability (SSDI) often is a good option for those who no longer can work for pay because of heart failure.
To qualify for SSDI for heart failure, you need to prove that your condition makes it impossible for you to perform any of the jobs you have done for pay in the last 15 years. If you have mostly held jobs that required physical labor, it will be relatively easy to document that you no longer can do those jobs. However, it won’t be as easy to show that you can’t perform any sedentary jobs.
While sedentary jobs are not as physical as other work situations, you may be required to lift boxes of files or stand and walk on a regular basis. Your job may involve a lot of stress, a condition that may worsen your heart disease.
Many sedentary jobs require:
- The ability to lift at least 10 pounds
- The ability to carry files, documents, and office supplies
- The ability to stand for 2 hours in an 8 hour work day
- The ability to sit for 6 hours in an 8 hour work day
- The ability to attend work regularly
You will need to speak with your doctor about the demands of your job. Ask your doctor for a letter that explicitly states all restrictions on your physical activity, including your ability to lift, carry, sit, stand, and walk. Ask your doctor to state how much stress you can handle and whether he believes stress contributed to your heart condition.
It is always a good idea to have a Boston Social Security Disability attorney review your application before you file it. Most people are denied the first time they apply, even if they qualify for benefits. If you are denied SSDI, a Massachusetts SSDI lawyer can help you file an appeal and obtain the documentation needed to support your disability claim. To learn more, request a free copy of our book, 7 Costly Mistakes That Can Ruin Your Social Security Disability Claim, or contact Keefe Disability Law at 888-904-6847.