April 11, 2015, was World Parkinson’s Day. It was a day designated to raise awareness about this serious condition and to promote a greater understanding of how it can affect a person.
If you have Parkinson’s disease—or you love someone who does—you know that promoting awareness and understanding should not be limited to one day a year. So, on all the days between this World Parkinson’s Day and the next, let’s keep the conversation going.
Let’s Talk About Social Security Disability Benefits
Social Security disability can be a great benefit to a person with Parkinson’s who can no longer earn a living because of his condition. Parkinson’s is a progressive disease. Shortly after your diagnosis, you may be able to continue working, but as the years go on and treatments fail, your tremors, stiffness, lack of coordination, speech problems or dementia may keep you from gainful employment.
When that happens, you may qualify for Social Security disability if you can prove one of the following:
- You meet the requirements of Section 11.06 of the Listing of Impairments. Section 11.06 allows someone with Parkinson’s syndrome to be found eligible for Social Security disability if that person has “significant rigidity, bradykinesia, or tremor in two extremities, which, singly or in combination, result in sustained disturbance of gross and dexterous movements, or gait and station.”
- Your symptoms are equal in severity to another listing in the Listing of Impairments. If you can prove that your symptoms are as severe as those in another listing, you are eligible for benefits.
- Your ability to perform work-related activities is severely limited and keeps you from earning a living. If your residual functional capacity prevents you from working, you should be eligible for benefits.
Social Security disability benefits can help you make ends meet and remove some stress from your life. Accordingly, it is important for you, and for other Parkinson’s patients to consider these benefits.
If you know anyone else suffering from this condition, please share this blog post so that he or she can better understand the Social Security disability eligibility requirements for Parkinson’s patients.
by Paul B. Burkhalter Managing Partner of Morgan & Weisbrod, Board Certified in Social Security Disability Law.