Approximately 25% of individuals who apply for disability insurance from the Social Security Administration list mental disorders or illnesses as their main disability or impairment. Although these claims could be hard to get approved, you can increase your chances of getting approved if you have an idea of how things work.
Additionally, although the SSA denies almost half of the claims involving mental impairments, 75% of these claimants who sought appeals eventually got approval through the appeal.
How the SSA Reviews Claims with Mental Disabilities
As with all disability claims, the SSA with review all your medical records to determine whether or not your specific mental disability meets their criteria. Below are some mental disorders or illnesses in the SSA’s Listing of Impairments:
- Mood disorders including bipolar disorder (BPD) and depression
- Neurocognitive disorders including dementia, Alzheimer’s, and cognitive disorders induced by substances
- Trauma disorders like PTSD or post-traumatic stress disorder
- Anxiety disorders like general anxiety and obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD)
- Eating disorders
- Impulse-control or personality disorders like a borderline personality disorder
- Neurodevelopmental disorders including attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), pervasive developmental disorders (PDD) and autism spectrum disorder (ASD)
- Specific learning disabilities and intellectual disorders
- Somatic symptom disorders
Each category, like the ones above, likewise comes with specific requirements that applicants must meet. For example, aside from having an official diagnosis of the mental disorder you’re claiming to have, you should also demonstrate that your disorder causes functional limitations that restrict your daily tasks and ability to work.
It’s also extremely vital to note that the criteria are pretty complex. So you should talk to your treating therapist, psychologist or psychiatrist, and a social security disability applications lawyer in Utah to determine the merits of your claim.
What if I Don’t Meet the Requirements?
In the event that your mental disability doesn’t meet the SSA’s requirements, it will evaluate your specific symptoms to establish your MRFC or mental residual functional capacity. Basically, your MRFC determines things you can do despite your limitations.
If the SSA deems your MRFC will hinder you from working on a sustained and regular basis, your claim will most likely be approved. Otherwise, it will deny your claim. The SSA will likewise review your medical records as well as official reports from your treating psychologist or psychiatrist.
It’s crucial to keep in mind that it would be immensely difficult to get a claim approved without a detailed MRFC report from a licensed psychologist or psychiatrist. Also, make sure that the report focuses on your particular mental limitations and the specific ways in which they negatively impact your daily life.
The Importance of Seeking Legal Help
In the unfortunate event that the Social Security Administration denies your claim, your best recourse is to discuss your case with a lawyer that has experience in Social Security disability applications, because he or she could use other tactics to improve your claim.
For instance, if you have a physical impairment as well as depression and anxiety, your lawyer can work this angle to demonstrate to the SSA how the combined effects of your multiple disabilities are negatively affecting your life.