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Does SSDI Cover Mental Disorders?

Social Security Disability, or SSDI, is known to cover a variety of physical disabilities and impairments. Applicants are less sure about whether their mental health disorders may qualify them for benefits. Proving disability based on a mental condition is more difficult, and for this reason, many valid claims are denied.

You will need the experience of a Louisiana disability benefits law firm to make your strongest case. Ascend Disability takes a look at what you need to know.

For help with your claim, call Ascend Disability today at (855) 445-9787.

Is Your Condition Covered?

A fundamental question in all disability applications is whether the condition prevents the applicant from working. More specifically, the individual seeking compensation must not be able to engage in substantial gainful activity (SGA). This is the Social Security Administration’s (SSA) term for being able to work and earn over a certain income threshold.

The SSA maintains a list of conditions that may allow an individual to claim disability benefits. This list is known as the Blue Book and contains both physical and mental conditions.

There are 11 categories of mental disorders that may qualify someone:

  • Neurocognitive disorders
  • Schizophrenia spectrum and other psychotic disorders
  • Depressive, bipolar, and related disorders
  • Intellectual disorders
  • Anxiety and obsessive-compulsive disorders
  • Somatic symptom disorder and related disorders
  • Personality and impulse-control disorders
  • Autism spectrum disorder
  • Neurodevelopmental disorders
  • Eating disorders
  • Trauma- and stressor-related disorders

SSDI Social Security Disability Insurance

How to Qualify for SSDI With a Mental Disorder

Having a qualifying mental health condition can help your case for disability benefits. Even if you don’t have a condition listed above you can still potentially qualify. A Louisiana disability benefits lawyer can help you present the best argument for the compensation you need.

For starters, you must be able to prove that:

  • You have enough work history to have accumulated sufficient work credits.
  • You have been diagnosed with a mental health condition that meets the SSA disability rules.
  • Your disability is expected to either last a year (minimum) or result in your death.
  • You must be unable to do the work you did before because of your condition.
  • You must be unable to adjust to other work due to your disability.

Mental health disorders are more complicated because they are often less obvious than physical disabilities. Few doctors or medical experts can easily dispute the presence of a physical disease or impairment.

More examination and evidence may be necessary to prove both the presence of a mental disorder and its effects. An applicant has to be able to show that the condition causes functional limitations in his or her ability to work.

If your condition is listed above, then there are specific criteria set forth in the Blue Book. These strict requirements are in place to evaluate an applicant’s ability to engage in SGA. However, even if your condition isn’t listed above, you may still be able to receive SSDI.

You will need to have your psychologist or psychiatrist fill out a mental residual functional capacity (MRFC) form. This document indicates what sorts of basic daily tasks you can and cannot perform. It is one of the most helpful steps you can take in applying for SSDI.

How We Can Support Your SSDI Claim

Our Louisiana disability benefits attorney is ready to assist with your SSDI claim. We start with reviewing your medical records and other evidence about your ability to work. Then we take the steps needed to gather additional supporting evidence.

We will review the criteria with you and develop a case for why you deserve compensation. Next, we will prepare and file your application and help appeal an adverse decision if necessary.

To learn more about SSDI for mental health conditions or to begin your claim, call Ascend Disability today at (855) 445-9787.

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