Saturday, January 26, 2008

Total Disability - What does this mean for social security disability

For social security disability and SSI disability purposes, a claimant must be completely and totally disabled. However, the terms "totally" and "completely" are used in the context of the social security definition of disability.

For example, completely disabled does not mean that a claimant must be wheelchair bound or have such reduced cognitive functioning to the extent that they are unable to perform any activities of daily activity. For SSD and SSI purposes, completely disabled means that a claimant's condition is considered severe and prevents them--

A) From being able to engage in work activity that earns a certain minimum amount per month known as SGA, or substantial gainful activity.

B) From performing work that they did in the past (past work) or other forms of work while earning the aforementioned monthly monetary amount.

C) The conditions mentioned above must last for at least one full year.

Obviously, the social security viewpoint on being totally and completely disabled is different from the way that many people would conceptualize a state of complete incapacity.

In fact, the social security disability system is actually set up to acknowledge the fact that workers, as they get older, have fewer vocational opportunities available to them.

Despite this aspect of the disability process, however, the system as it currently operates, is less than compassionate as cases can currently drag on for three years or more due to huge backlogs.

Return to the Social Security Disability SSI Benefits Blog

Update on a Social Security Disability Application