What Factors Are Considered For A Disability Benefits Application?

Posted on: 17 June 2015

If you are suffering from major depression and it is affecting your ability to work, you can file for Social Security disability benefits. However, it is possible that you will not be approved. The Social Security Administration, or SSA, is looking for certain markers to indicate that your application is valid. It is important that you know what those are so you can work to increase your chances of being approved. 

How Long Have Your Symptoms Lasted?

One of the factors that the SSA will consider when evaluating your application is how long you have had symptoms of major depression. If you can prove that your symptoms have lasted at least the last 12 months and that they have been bad enough to keep you from working, your application could possibly be approved. You are not required to show that you are depressed on a daily basis, but that there is a pattern that is keeping you from consistently functioning.

Your treating physician and therapist's records can help you prove how long you have suffered from depression. When you have appointments, ensure that your medical care providers are documenting your symptoms. 

Are You Being Treated?

Another important factor is whether or not you are following your doctor's orders. The SSA believes that you have a responsibility to do what you can to get better. If your medical care provider has prescribed medication to treat your depression and you have not taken it, your application could be denied. In this instance, the SSA would consider you to be noncompliant. 

However, the SSA does allow exceptions to some people in certain situations. For instance, if you could not afford to pay for the recommended treatment, the SSA will take this into account. If you are suffering from another mental health condition that is typically associated with medication noncompliance, you could also still be eligible for benefits. 

Are You Using Illegal Drugs or Alcohol?

Unfortunately, some people who suffer from major depression use drugs or alcohol to self-medicate. If you have an addiction, the SSA could deny your application. In this instance, you and your attorney will need to prove that your depression would still exist even if you did not use drugs or alcohol. If your medical care provider can provide a statement to back up this assertion, the SSA might still approve your benefits. 

There are other factors that are considered by the SSA when evaluating a disability related to depression. To better understand those factors, talk to an attorney at http://toddeast.com/