Is alcoholism a disability?

On Behalf of | Dec 10, 2020 | Social Security Disability |

Social Security Disability benefits pay only to people who have a disability under the Social Security Administration’s definition.

The SSA defines disability as something that prevents you from working and will last for at least a year. Under this definition, it may seem that alcoholism would qualify, but it is not that straightforward.

Contributing factor

The SSA will not give you benefits just because you have alcoholism. You must have some other type of disability first to qualify. Then, the SSA will assess your alcoholism as a contributing factor.

A contributing factor is something that aggravates your disability or causing the disability to continue. However, the SSA will look into whether the main disability would still be present even if your alcoholism were not. If the disability is solely due to the alcoholism, then alcoholism is a contributing factor under the SSA definition.

You can then get benefits even though your alcoholism is causing the disability or causing it to be worse.

Medical evidence

You must show medical evidence that you have alcoholism. You also must present medical evidence that your alcoholism contributes to your disability. In addition, you have to provide medical evidence about the foundation disability that qualifies you for benefits.

Alcoholism with disability

If you have alcoholism but no other disability, then you do not qualify for SSDI benefits. Alcoholism by itself is not a disability under the SSA definition. The requirement to have a qualifying disability is the backbone of these benefits, and since alcoholism alone is not a disability, you will need to prove another qualifying disability to secure benefits.

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