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SSDI requires at least 12 months’ inability to work at any job

| May 26, 2020 | Social Security Disability |

A claim for Social Security Disability Insurance in Florida could result in a denial if an applicant’s inability to work will not last more than 12 months. To qualify, an individual must have a condition that either will not improve within a year or that will result in a fatality. 

As described by the Social Security Administration, eligibility for SSDI benefits is also determined by how severely an impairment affects an applicant’s ability to move or function. An injury that prohibits certain types of physical movement, for example, may qualify for benefits, but not if other work options are available. 

The condition prevents changing job functions 

When an individual begins to feel pain or a loss of normal mobility, it can signal a need to change jobs. A condition such as chronic back pain could prevent an employee from performing his or her regular job tasks, but other forms of work may be available. A worker who lifts heavy objects repetitively and begins to suffer pain may ask an employer about the possibility of taking on another position that does not require as much heavy lifting. 

To qualify for SSDI, however, applicants must have a condition severe enough to prohibit them from changing jobs. This is not an uncommon circumstance; as reported by U.S. News & World Report, 25% of American adults will develop a disability before they turn 67. 

SSDI does not provide short-term or partial disability benefits  

Eligibility does not depend on an applicant’s inability to find alternative, partial or short-term employment; it instead rests upon an individual’s inability to perform any type of alternative work. If, for example, an applicant can still perform light assembly work, walk dogs or answer telephone calls, the SSA may not consider the impairment severe enough to qualify for benefits. 

When an application results in a denial, a disabled individual can file an appeal. An effective presentation may show a Florida Social Security judge why a debilitating condition should qualify for benefits.