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Can Your “Invisible Illness” Qualify as a Disability?

Can Your “Invisible Illness” Qualify as a Disability?

Living with a disability can be difficult enough when others can recognize it. But when you are living with an “invisible” disability, it can be even harder as visibility often helps others to recognize your necessary accommodations.

What many people fail to understand is that a disability is not made less severe just because others can’t see it. Sometimes invisible illnesses impact individuals’ lives even more than those that are visible.

One of the problems is that invisible illnesses cannot be detected through blood or another diagnostic testing. This is very concerning because according to Disabled World, about 96 percent of everyone living with a chronic medical condition suffers from an invisible illness.

Invisible Illnesses Often Have Visible Symptoms

While certain illnesses themselves are not visible, they still have many visible symptoms. Such symptoms include:

  • Dizziness
  • Cognitive dysfunction
  • Difficulty learning
  • Mental health disorders
  • Fatigue
  • Brain injuries
  • Hearing or vision impairment
  • Incapacitating pain

Commonly Approved Invisible Disabilities

The Social Security Administration (SSA) decides whether or not someone’s disability is severe enough to qualify him or her for Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits. However, there are certain invisible disabilities that are commonly approved. These conditions include:

  • Chronic pain
  • Major depressive episodes
  • Renal failure
  • Sleep Disorders
  • Cancer
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
  • Anxiety
  • Workplace stress
  • Lupus
  • Epilepsy
  • Schizophrenia
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Chronic fatigue
  • Chronic dizziness
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Bipolar disorder
  • Diabetes
  • Arthritis
  • Traumatic brain injury

SSD Benefit Requirements

While it’s good to know if you have a commonly approved condition, whether or not you suffer from one does not by itself determine your eligibility. Each case depends on its own specific facts and circumstances. You may be eligible for SSD benefits if you meet the following:

  1. Your disability is expected to last at least 12 months or is expected to be terminal;
  2. Your disability prevents you from any kind of work; and
  3. You are under the care of a physician, are following their treatment plan, and are willing to participate in recovery when possible.

In order to prove the above requirements you must obtain documents surrounding your symptoms and their severity as well as how the condition impacts your ability to work. This often comes in the form of medical records and documentation through your treating doctor or other medical personnel.

The NYC SSD Attorneys at Seelig Law Offices, LLC Can Help

When you suffer from a disability that prevents you from being able to work, you may not know how you will make ends meet or what to do next. Luckily, the attorneys at Seelig Law Offices, LLC can help. We understand how your disability can impact your life and the lives of those you love. That’s why we’re here to help you. To learn more, or to schedule a consultation, contact us today!

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