No. Social Security disability is a legal determination, not a medical or psychological determination. Thus, while you play an important role in helping your client who is disabled, your determination alone will not guarantee that your client is eligible for Social Security disability benefits.
You may be able to determine that your client is unable to work because of a mental condition. However, in order to qualify for Social Security disability, the office of Disability Determination Services (DDS) is going to have to find that your client:
- Worked and paid into the Social Security system for the amount of time required in order to be eligible for benefits.
- Will be disabled for at least 12 months or has a condition that is likely to result in death.
- Is unable to work in any kind of job.
DDS will consider your client’s medical records, including any records that you have, and other things such as your client’s past work experience, age, and education.
You Still Play an Important Role in the Social Security Disability Application Process
It can be frustrating to know that your client is permanently disabled and still has to go through the Social Security disability application process. However, it is inevitable and there are things you can do to make the process easier for your client. Specifically, you can encourage your client to work with an experienced Texas Social Security disability lawyer, you can provide requested documentation, and you can provide important support for your client during this difficult time.
by Paul B. Burkhalter Managing Partner of Morgan & Weisbrod, Board Certified in Social Security Disability Law.