The Social Security Administration (SSA) Blue Book, also known as Disability Evaluation Under Social Security, contains an impairment listing for adults and children. The listing describes the most common impairments and the medical severity required to be considered disabled by the SSA.
The SSA recognizes that it is impossible to list all possible impairments. Therefore it developed a methodology for determining if your specific ailment is equivalent, in terms of severity, to one of the impairments listed in the book. If you have an ailment that conforms exactly to one of the ailments listed in the Blue Book and you meet all of the other eligibility criteria, you will almost certainly be awarded Social Security Disability benefits.
If your impairment does not match up with one in the Blue Book, the claims reviewer must determine if your ailment is equivalent to another similar ailment by considering whether the following is true:
- Your impairment is similar in severity and impact to another impairment listed in the Blue Book.
- Your medical findings clearly point to a specific impairment although you do not necessarily meet all of the criteria listed in the Blue Book.
- A combination of impairments adds up to or exceeds the severity of a single impairment listed in the Blue Book.
If your ailment cannot be matched up to one in the Blue Book, the claims reviewer must then determine if you are able to do the type of work you have done in the past. This entire process is quite subjective and many claims are denied as a result. At Schmidt Kramer, we regularly help disabled applicants appeal an unfavorable Social Security benefit decision and win. If your disability benefits have been denied, contact a knowledgeable Lebanon Social Security Disability attorney at (717) 888-8888 for a free case review.