The standard for qualifying for Social Security disability is the inability to do full-time work. This means being able to show up for work on a predicatable, sustained baisis, 40 hours a week, 8 hours a day.
If a claimant can’t technically qualify under the Medical Guidelines, he or she may be still able to win a case by proving that daily-living symptoms reduce their productivity to such a level that no employer would keep them on. That means that they would be unable to work sufficient hours per week, or days in a month to keep a job.
Do they need daily naps? Are there more than 5 days amonth when they would be unable to work? A claimant with diabetes, HIV, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s, hepatitis, cardiac problems and even some psychiatric disorders may be so fatigued that they sleep several hours during the day. The side effects of medication may also cause fatigue, and these side effects of prescribed medications must be considered by the SSA.
Claimants with severe orthopedic problems may have to lie down during the day, to relieve the pressure on their spine/nerves. People with severe headaches must rest in a dark room and may fall asleep.
All of these factors need to be carefully developied in the ecidence to win a case. Consult us for more information if you think any of these apply to you!
Claimants with Crohn’s and related diseases may be in the bathroom and then recovering from the pain for a total of several hours per day.
In addition to looking to medical records to document pain, fatigue, isolation and similar symptoms that limit a claimant’s ability to be productive, we can call a witness—sometimes a family member—at a hearing, in order to corroborate this loss of normal productivity.