Can I get SSDI if my illness isn’t on the List of Impairments?

Any person who is curious about Social Security disability benefits should know about the Listing of Impairments. The Social Security Administration’s Listing of Impairments is the list of all the conditions — physical and mental — that may be covered by disability benefits.

If you suffer from a condition on that list and meet all other eligibility and application requirements, you can receive critically needed financial support. However, even though the list is very long, it doesn’t include every type of disabling illness that exists. This leads many people to ask, “Can I still collect SSDI if I have a condition that is not on that list?”

The short answer to this question is yes. A person can still collect disability benefits from Social Security if he or she has an illness that is not on the official Listing of Impairments. However, the benefits are certainly not guaranteed and filing an application can be even more challenging than it already is for people who do have a condition that appears on the list.

If your condition isn’t on the list, you will need to show that it is recognized by the medical community and is considered to be an impairment supported by clinical and lab testing.

If this can be confirmed, a person will go through the rest of the application process much like any other candidate for benefits. You will have to prove that you are seriously limited in your capacity to perform work duties and that the condition is expected to last for at least one year. You will need to collect employment and medical records as well and may need to file an appeal if your initial application is denied.

It should be a relief to know that benefits are still available to people who suffer from conditions that aren’t on the SSA’s Listing of Impairments, but that doesn’t make the process of pursuing benefits any easier. For support and guidance in the process of seeking benefits, it can be a wise decision to speak with an attorney.

Source: FindLaw.com, “Medical Conditions that Qualify You for Disability Claims,” accessed on July 6, 2015