Most people may assume that if their doctors, therapists or other health care professionals write that they are “disabled from work,” they should automatically win their Social Security Disability (“SSDI”) case right off the bat. “Most people, unfortunately, are wrong,” notes Herndon disability lawyer Doug Landau, “as the Federal Government does not simply accept conclusory statements from health care providers. Instead, the folks who review Social Security Disability applications look for objective signs and symptoms that would support the Administration’s conclusion that the person cannot do any kind of full time, competitive work that is found in the national economy. ”
The Social Security Administration (“SSA”) works with medical “Listings” which, if met, can lead to a finding that a claimant is “disabled.” Each listing has a specific criteria which must be met in order to win an SSDI case. For example, the Listing for Peripheral Neuropathy, which is neurological impairment of the extremities (i.e., loss of sensation in the arms and/or legs, hands and/or feet), requires proof of either subsection A or B:
- A. Disorganization of motor function in two extremities (see 11.00D1), resulting in an extreme limitation (see 11.00D2) in the ability to stand up from a seated position, balance while standing or walking, or use the upper extremities.
- B. Marked limitation (see 11.00G2) in physical functioning (see 11.00G3a), and in one of the following:
- • Understanding, remembering, or applying information (see 11.00G3b(i)); or
- • Interacting with others (see 11.00G3b(ii)); or
- • Concentrating, persisting, or maintaining pace (see 11.00G3b(iii)); or
- • Adapting or managing oneself (see 11.00G3b(iv))
Attorney Doug Landau has won cases under this Listing for clients, including one worker who developed Berylliosis that caused not only difficulty breathing, but also permanent and widespread peripheral neuropathy. However, if someone seeking Social Security benefits only had “moderate” limitations in their motor function (i.e., coordination), or only “moderate” limitation understanding, remembering, or applying information or interacting with others, then the Federal Government would find the person “not disabled” under the Medical Listing. That is why it is important to look at the Listings that apply to your case. They can be found at:
Once the Medical Listings that may apply to your condition(s) are identified, the appropriate questions can be posed by your lawyer to your treating doctors and therapists so that they can prove to the SSA that you qualify for benefits. An experienced Social Security Disability lawyer will be able to put into your hands the specialized reports needed to support the case. Most medical records do not contain the information a Social Security judge needs to find in your favor. These “Administrative Law Judges” have not had rigorous medical education and the handwriting on many doctors’ charts are illegible. So, having a trial tested attorney on your side can help to save time, money and increase your chances of winning your case.
Virginia Social Security Disability lawyer Doug Landau tries to eliminate the guesswork with these cases. He and his legal team pose the important questions to the doctors in a manner where their handwriting and the judges’ lack of medical training will not combine to derail a meritorious case. Everyone at the Herndon law firm Abrams Landau, Ltd. has been to court, has assisted clients with their SSDI cases and seen “Fully Favorable” decisions from the courts as the result of their hard work. Recent cases have taken the Abrams Landau Social Security team to venues such as: Morgantown, West Virginia; Hagerstown, Maryland; Richmond, Virginia; Dover, Delaware; Charleston, West Virginia; Washington, D.C. and, Charlottesville, Virginia. In other words, the Abrams Landau team covers the East Coast, such that if you or a loved one have to move due to treatment or economics, we can probably still help you out with a Social Security Disability case, without any interruption in our representation before the Federal Government.
Even though you are simply seeking the money you and your family put aside from years of earnings, the Federal Government does not make it easy to get these funds before retirement age, when you might really need them because of illness, injury or disease. The waiting time for Social Security benefits on account of disabling conditions can be years. If you or someone you know or care for has been injured and become disabled as the result of an illness, workplace injury, occupational disease, car, truck, bicycle or motorcycle crash and there are questions about Social Security Disability Income, call (703-796-9555) or email us at ABRAMS LANDAU, Ltd. at once.