Am I Medically Eligible for SSD/SSI?
Disability assessment standards are the same for SSD and SSI, and their threshold for proving disability tends to be higher than that of other public and private programs. For example, different standards apply to
- workers' compensation
- veteran's benefits
- private short-term or long-term disability insurance through an employer
- ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act)
- being legally blind or disabled for driver's license purposes
- waiver of life insurance premium
- recovery of lost wages
Furthermore, no "temporary total disability" or "permanent partial disability" or "percent disability" applies to SSD or SSI. Claimants do not get more money the more disabled they are.
Five Step Evaluation
To determine disability, an appointed decision maker is supposed to apply a Five Step evaluation of the claim at every stage of appeal. This is called the "Sequential Evaluation."
- Is the claimant working?
- If not, does the claimant have a severe, long-lasting impairment?
- If so, does the claimant's impairment match or equal a listed impairment?
- If not, can the claimant go back to work?
- If not, can the claimant do other work?