Like most people in Modesto, you likely take great pride in your ability to work to support yourself and your family. That ride may be so strong, in fact, that you choose to pursue a career with a physical issue (such as joint abnormality) that might otherwise make certain work difficult.
The question is what happens when that abnormality prevents you from working at all. In such an event (given that you have a work history) you may believe that you cannot qualify for Social Security disability benefits. Yet is that really the case?
The medical criteria for qualifying for SSD benefits
Fortunately, the Social Security Administration sets forth very clear criteria for qualifying for benefits due to a joint abnormality. Per this criteria, you must first meet the following three conditions:
- Chronic joint stiffness or pain
- Abnormal motion, immobility or instability of the affected joint
- An actual abnormality if the affected joint confirmed by a physical examination or imaging studies
A demonstrated continuous impairment
In addition, you must demonstrate an apparent impairment in the affected joint that requires the use of a walker, crutches, a cane or a wheelchair. If you do not rely on any of those, then you must demonstrate an inability to use the affected joint to perform fine movements without the use of a one-handed hand-held assisting device. If that is not present in your case, then the only other way to qualify would be to demonstrate joint impairments in both extremities that limit your ability to perform tasks incident to employment.
For the aforementioned impairments, you must present documentation indicating the presence of the condition for at least 12 months (or that your doctor expects it to last for at least 12 months).