Obesity in combination with other physical or mental impairments can be considered disability. A body mass index (BMI) of over 30 is considered to be obese. A BMI of over 35 is considered to be Level II obesity. A BMI of over 40 is considered to be morbid obesity. Being obese by itself is not deemed to be disabling. Social Security looks at how obesity effects other impairments such as Orthopedic and Spinal Disorders; breathing and respiratory disorders; heart problems, and mental illness.
The SSA does offer a fairly simple explanation of what it considers disability. In general, the SSA considers disability “… A medically-determinable physical or mental impairment(s)” that keeps you from engaging in work, a condition that will either result in death or last for at least a year.
The SSA requires that you prove that you are unable to work, or at least work in the same capacity you were before. To prove your disability, you will need to gather evidence, including signed forms from your doctor explaining your condition.
You can apply for disability in the following ways:
Probably the least desirable option is to walk into the Social Security office without an appointment. You may have to wait a long time before you can talk to someone about your application. Calling to apply allows you to speak with a representative. They can help you with the application, and applying online is often the fastest option.
Be prepared for denial of your initial application. The SSA tends to deny claims the first time around. You will need to appeal if you want to get your benefits. The appeal process can take a significant amount of time, over a year in some cases. Prepare yourself for a wait. By demonstrating your disability, there is a chance you will get your benefits, but it will probably not happen quickly.
To improve your chances of getting your benefits and eliminate much of the uncertainty of the application and appeals process, you should work with an attorney experienced in SSI and SSD. A skilled attorney can help ensure that everything is done right the first time. Correctly collecting information minimizes the chances of rejection. Your lawyer will be useful in the appeals process. You may need to speak to a judge and present your case before SSA accepts your claim.Mark Schneider Mark Schneider has helped many, many clients through the SSI/SSDI process, and we are here to do the same for you. Please contact us now to get started on the application or appeals process. The sooner we begin, the sooner we can get you your benefits.
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