Qualifying for Social Security Disability While Attending a Rehab Clinic
The overall goal of a rehabilitation facility is to help individuals get to the point where they can live and function on their own after an injury, illness or surgery. These facilities focus on providing short-term care to aid patients in recovering and transitioning back to normal life.
If you are attending a rehab clinic to help improve your medical condition, you may be concerned about whether or not you may be able to qualify for Social Security Disability. The short answer is yes – if certain criteria are met. The Social Security Administration (SSA) generally approves disability benefits to individuals with conditions that are serious enough to affect their ability to work and perform daily tasks.
At Dayes Law Firm, our attorneys are ready to guide you throughout the disability claims process or help you appeal a denial. We are well-versed in the SSA’s eligibility requirements. Find out if you have a valid claim in a free consultation. There is no obligation involved and no upfront fees to hire our firm.
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SSA’s Criteria to Qualify for Social Security Disability
In order to qualify for Social Security Disability, the SSA requires that you meet the following criteria:
- Your condition has lasted or is expected to last for 12 months or more
- You earn less than the substantial gainful activity (SGA) limit per month
- Your condition impacts your ability to work or complete basic work-related activities
Should the above criteria be met, the SSA will evaluate details of your claim – including the medical evidence you submitted – to determine if your condition is serious enough to be disabling.
If you think that you will continue to be eligible for disability once your rehabilitation is complete, you have the right to apply for benefits at any time – even while you are still attending a rehab clinic.
Likelihood of Condition Improving After Rehabilitation
Depending on your situation, a rehab facility could help improve your condition or allow you to make a full recovery. Your prognosis, on the other hand, may remain the same even after rehabilitation.
If your doctor has recommended going to a rehab clinic, it is important that you follow his or her recommended treatments. You do not want the SSA to think that you are being non-compliant. This could harm your chances of being approved for disability benefits.
However, if your doctor or rehabilitation facility says that you are likely to recover enough that you can return to work and return to your daily tasks, you may no longer qualify for Social Security Disability.
Any disability benefits you are currently receiving also may stop if the SSA reasonably believes that:
- You will be able to find gainful employment within the year; or
- Your condition improves and a medical exam establishes you are fit to work
If you are making some progress at a rehab clinic but your medical condition has not improved or improvement is not expected, you may be considered permanently disabled.
Claimants Receiving Care at Other Medical Facilities
Generally speaking, receiving care to improve your condition at other medical facilities will not impact getting or maintaining Social Security Disability. This includes staying at a public or private facility such as a hospital or psychiatric facility unless you are being held there in connection with a crime. For instance, being in jail or prison will likely result in a suspension of disability benefits.
As long as you do not fail to follow treatment (i.e. such as refusing surgery) at a facility that could improve your condition and your ability to work, you may be able to obtain the benefits you need.
Speak With an Attorney About Your Disability Claim
For more information about the disability claims process or appealing a denial, reach out to a licensed Social Security Disability attorney in Phoenix today. He or she can help you understand what can affect your claim and what must be established to show that your condition warrants disability benefits.
We offer initial consultations free of charge without any legal obligation. We do not get paid unless you do. Our intake staff is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week to take your call.
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