If your specific disability is not included in the Social Security Administration’s Blue Book Listing of Impairments, one of the ways that you may be eligible for Social Security disability benefits it to prove that your disability is medically equivalent to one of the listings in the Blue Book.
How to Prove Medical Equivalence
According to Social Security regulations, your disability must be at least equal in severity and duration to a disability that is included in the Blue Book. You may prove that your condition is medically equivalent by proving that:
- You have an impairment that is included in the Blue Book but you do not exhibit all of the findings described in that listing or one of your findings is not as severe as that described in the Blue Book. You may still be found eligible for Social Security disability in this case if the severity of the rest of your symptoms makes your condition equivalent in overall severity to how the condition is described in the listing.
- You have an impairment that is not included in the Blue Book but is substantially similar to an impairment that is included in the Blue Book. If the findings of your impairment are of at least equal medical significance to the listing in the Blue Book, you will be eligible for Social Security disability.
- You have multiple impairments and no single impairment meets a Blue Book listing on its own. If the findings of all of your impairments together are of at least equal medical significance to a Blue Book listing, you will be found eligible for Social Security disability.
The determination of medical equivalence will be made by considering all of the evidence in your case record and the opinions of medical and psychological consultants. Your education and work experience are irrelevant to the determination of medical equivalence.
Eligibility Based on Medical Equivalence Can Be Complicated
You must set out a strong argument with the right evidence in order to get your application approved. Our board certified lawyers can advise you of your rights and help you get the benefits you deserve. To learn more, please contact us directly via this website or by phone to set up a meeting.
by Paul B. Burkhalter Managing Partner of Morgan & Weisbrod, Board Certified in Social Security Disability Law.