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If your bipolar disorder is controlled by medication, you may not currently qualify for Social Security disability benefits. While bipolar disorder may qualify some people for Social Security benefits, you will likely not meet the Social Security Administration’s (SSA) eligibility criteria if your symptoms are controlled by medication.


In order to receive Social Security disability benefits you must be unable to work because of your bipolar disorder. If your medication controls your symptoms enough so that you can work, you do not need Social Security disability and you should expect that the SSA will deny your application for benefits.

Be Aware That Circumstances Change

Bipolar disorder, as you well know, is a tricky condition. Your current treatment which is working well now may:

  • Stop working in the future.
  • Result in serious side effects that make the costs of continuing with treatment outweigh the benefits.

If these things happen and your condition starts to severely impact your ability to work and live your life then it may be time to reconsider your Social Security disability eligibility—especially if other treatments are unavailable or ineffective. Before you apply, however, you should talk to your doctor and make sure your condition and its effect on your life are well documented.

To get more information, at any time, you can download our FREE Social Security Disability Fact Sheet; you can read the SSA’s specific requirements for bipolar disorder eligibility, or you can start live chat with us to have your questions answered.

Morgan & Weisbrod LLP

by Paul B. Burkhalter
Managing Partner of Morgan & Weisbrod, Board Certified in Social Security Disability Law.


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