When applying for Social Security disability benefits in North Carolina, the impairments the applicant suffers from will be a critical factor in the decision Disability Determination Services makes on behalf of the Social Security Administration. When the person is suffering from several impairments, this can impact the claim and whether the application for SSD benefits will be approved. It is important to know how multiple impairments are assessed so the person has the best possible chance to gain an approval. Having legal assistance from the beginning is imperative.
It is against the rules for an applicant to combine two or more impairments that are unrelated when it is determined whether the person meets the requirement of being disabled for 12 months. For those with a severe impairment or multiple severe impairments who then suffer from another severe impairment that is not linked to the others – but none will meet the 12-month duration requirement – the SSA will not find the person disabled regardless of the combination reaching 12 months.
For concurrent impairments that are severe, the SSA will decide if the combination of them will result in sufficient severity for 12 months. If one or more is expected to improve or does improve in that 12-month time-frame so it is not severe, the SSA will determine that the person is not meeting the duration requirement. The combined effect of all the impairments is also important. If the issues are viewed separately, they might meet the requirements for an approval. If the combination is found to meet the criteria, the combined effects will be considered as the process moves forward and is completed. If there is no finding that the combination is severe, the claim will be denied.
Getting SSD benefits can be complicated. This is especially true if the person suffers from separate impairments that, individually, are not severe enough to warrant an approval but might be severe enough if viewed in the above contexts. For help with a claim, it is vital to contact a firm that is experienced in Social Security disability cases to make sure all the evidence is provided and there is a good chance at success.