Get the Facts About SSI Benefits for Your Osteoarthritis
Osteoarthritis is a painful, degenerative disease that is characterized by joint pain, swelling, and stiffness. As the cartilage in the joints continues to degrade and symptoms worsen, working can become difficult or even impossible. If you have osteoarthritis and your disability is making it painful and difficult to work, you might qualify for Social Security Disability benefits.
When you apply, you will have to go through the disability evaluation process. The first five steps are the same for every applicant:
- Is your condition on the Social Security Administration’s list of impairments? Osteoarthritis fits under several qualifying categories, depending on the location and severity of the disease.
- Is your condition severe and expected to last for 12 months or longer?
- Are you still working?
- If you can’t work at your current job, are you able to do any type of work that you have done in the past?
- Is there any other type of work that you can do, given your age, education, past experience, and physical limitations?
You will also have to meet specific SSD qualifying conditions for osteoarthritis. You will need an X-ray showing that you have a deformity of the affected joint. If you have arthritis in your legs or hips, your disability must be severe enough that you cannot walk well enough to get around on your own. If the osteoarthritis is in your hands, arms, or shoulders, it must be severe enough to prevent you from being able to take care of yourself on a regular basis. If you have osteoarthritis in your neck or spine, it must affect your senses, reflexes, or mobility.
Osteoarthritis is an extremely painful condition. It cannot be cured, but the pain can be alleviated with medication, and treatment can slow the disease’s progression.
Only 30 percent of those who apply for Social Security Disability benefits are approved the first time they apply. If osteoarthritis is preventing you from being able to work and your SSI or SSDI application has been denied, don’t give up. A Social Security disability attorney can help. To learn more, request your free copy of Boston disability attorney John Keefe’s book 7 Costly Mistakes That Can Ruin Your Social Security Disability Claim or contact Keefe Disability Law at 888-904-6847.