I am a recent Iraq war veteran and have had both legs amputated below the knee after being hit by an IED. I need some help paying my bills as I recover, both physically and financially, here in Boston. How do I apply for Social Security disability benefits?

First, let us begin by thanking you for your service to our country. Second, we must warn you that applying for Massachusetts SSA disability benefits can be tricky. Let’s begin with the requirements for amputees. 

Just like any other disability case, you must be able to prove that you are unable to perform the types of movement needed for a job like lifting, bending, and walking. The kind of work you do will determine exactly what you need to prove. For example, if you work primarily at a desk, the guidelines will be different than if you build houses.

Amputations, according to the SSA guidelines, require that you have:
  • Lost both hands, or;
  • Lost either lower limb above the ankle and be experiencing complications that make it impossible to use prosthetic devices to walk, or;
  • Lost one hand and one lower limb above the ankle and be unable to use a prosthetic device, or;
  • Lost an entire leg with the amputation at the hip or pelvis.

It is important to note that if you do not meet the requirements listed above, you may still be able to qualify, even if it means being denied and appealing your SSA disability case.

In addition, you will need medical records documenting your treatment to prove to the SSA that you have been or will be disabled (by their definition) for at least one year.

As Massachusetts disability lawyers, we specialize in helping people like you pursue SSA disability benefits cases. Give us a call toll free today at 888-904-6847 to discuss your options. 

You might also want to order a copy of our free report, Five Most Frequently Asked Questions about Social Security Disability. We look forward to talking with you.
John L. Keefe
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Founding Attorney, Massachusetts Social Security Disability Lawyer