Degenerative disc disease refers to ongoing changes in a person’s spine that occur with age. For example, the individual may experience a disc bulge or osteoarthritis in their cervical, thoracic, or lumbar spine – or some other medical condition that causes them pain as they grow older. Although degenerative disc disease, sometimes called DDD, is a qualifying medical condition for disability benefits in certain instances, it can be difficult to prove that this disease prevents you from engaging in a substantial gainful activity (SGA). Moreover, degenerative disc disease is not a qualifying medical condition by itself.
If you currently suffer from degenerative disc disease and are trying to obtain Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits, you should speak with a knowledgeable lawyer right away. An Orange County Social Security disability benefits attorney can review your unique circumstances with you and determine your eligibility for filing a disability claim. If you are eligible, we can help you obtain the necessary medical documentation to prove that you are entitled to benefits. If your claim is ultimately denied, your lawyer can help you appeal the claim denial and continue pursuing the benefits you deserve.
Eligibility for SSD Benefits
To recover SSD benefits, you will need to prove that you currently suffer from an ongoing medical condition, such as a permanent illness or injury. Moreover, the condition must prevent you from performing a substantial gainful activity. In other words, the condition must prevent you from working at any job or in any capacity. To prove that you are eligible for SSD benefits, you and your lawyer will need to submit detailed medical documentation that establishes that your medical condition prevents you from working. Therefore, it is essential that you have a qualified medical provider on board in your case.
What to Include in Your Disability Benefits Application
If you currently suffer from degenerative disc disease and are trying to recover SSD benefits, there are certain documents that you should include in your benefits application. First, you must ensure that you have a qualified medical doctor, such as an orthopedist, who is willing to state – to a reasonable degree of medical certainty – that your condition prevents you from working. You must also include medical documentation that establishes ongoing, consistent treatment with a medical provider.
Moreover, to recover compensation, the SSA needs to see medical evidence of a formal diagnosis, along with information that your degenerative disc disease has caused either lumbar spinal stenosis, nerve compression, or spinal arachnoiditis.
Finally, in the documentation you submit, you should include statements from your human resources representative or from a former employer that describe how your medical condition affected your work. You may also need to submit records of your sick days, family medical leave, and short-term disability leave. All of this evidence can bolster your case — and your entitlement to SSD benefits.
Talk With a Social Security Disability Benefits Lawyer in California Today
If your degenerative disc disease prevents you from working – and you have a qualified medical provider on board in your case – you might be eligible to recover SSD benefits. An Orange County Social Security Disability benefits lawyer in your area can review your eligibility for benefits and file the necessary claim on your behalf. If your claim is denied for insufficient medical documentation, your lawyer can help you obtain the additional documents necessary to prove your claim and file an appeal on your behalf.