The Social Security Administration (SSA) considers a number of conditions to be severe enough to prevent you from working. Regardless of the condition, all are subject to evaluation and must meet certain criteria to qualify for Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits.
Though most of the conditions listed by the SSA as disabling are permanent or expected to result in death, those that are not require evidence showing that the condition has lasted or is expected to last for at least one year.
Traumatic Amputations and SSD Benefits
A traumatic amputation is the loss of a body part—usually a finger, toe, arm, or leg—that occurs as the result of an accident or trauma.
An amputation is considered a disabling condition by the SSA and may qualify you for either SSD or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits dependent on the condition and your age. As amputation affects the musculoskeletal system, it is classified with other conditions that can result from infectious, inflammatory, or degenerative processes, traumatic or developmental events, or neoplastic, vascular, or toxic/metabolic diseases.
Amputations are classified into four categories by the SSA based on the type of limb lost and the degree of severity of the injury:
- Both hands
- One or both lower extremities at or above the tarsal region (the ankle bones), with stump complications resulting in medical inability to use a prosthetic device to ambulate effectively
- One hand and one lower extremity at or above the tarsal region, with inability to ambulate effectively
- Hemipelvectomy (a high level pelvic amputation) or hip disarticulation (the loss of three joints—the hip, knee, and ankle)
You Deserve Professional Legal Representation
Although getting SSD benefits for an amputation should be a straightforward process, it’s not always easy, and sometimes valid claims are denied. At Fleschner, Stark, Tanoos & Newlin, we know how the SSD system works, and we can build you a strong claim that will maximize your chances of receiving benefits.