The Social Security Administration (SSA) recognizes that cancer patients face significant challenges during their illness, which is why they allow SSI claims filed on the grounds of having a disability due to cancer. To qualify for the needs-based Supplemental Security Income (SSI) program, you must be able to meet a certain income and asset criteria in addition to suffering from a disability. If you are still suffering from long-term physical effects that prevent you from working, you will likely be considered disabled by the SSA because of your cancer.
If remission is not possible, there can also be a claim for permanent disability. When determining the severity of your disability, the SSA will take into consideration factors like your pain levels and ability to maintain daily activities. If you are still undergoing treatments that restrict your mobility or activity level, you may also be eligible for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits while awaiting a decision on your SSI claim.
According to the SSA, any type of cancer can be considered a disability; however, the SSA takes into account other factors in addition to a cancer diagnosis. For this reason, SSI for cancer patients can be a little more complicated than for other types of disabilities.
Stage IV cancer is typically considered a disability because it is unlikely that one could work having such a critical illness. However, if your diagnosis is Stage I or II, you may be denied benefits.
If you are diagnosed with a cancer that is included on Social Security’s Compassionate Allowances List, your claim will be approved quickly because it is easily recognized by the agency as having long-term effects that significantly diminish your ability to perform everyday activities. Additionally, diagnosis with a form of cancer that is listed in Social Security’s Blue Book can automatically qualify a patient for disability benefits, provided that the cancer has metastasized, or is recurrent or untreatable. The Blue Book includes skin cancer, leukemia, breast cancer, and lung cancer.
Types of cancer not listed in the Blue Book may qualify for benefits based on a “Medical-Vocational Allowance,” which considers additional factors including age and ability to work. If a treatment for cancer such as radiation or chemotherapy causes severe functional limitations that prevent you from being able to work full-time, you may qualify for SSI benefits under a Medical-Vocational Allowance.
If you are seeking SSI compensation in Texas due to a cancer-related disability, you will need to apply for SSI disability with the SSA and provide proof of your diagnosis and medical records. You can file an online application or contact a Social Security office near you for more information on how to start the process. Because SSI claims are often complex, it is advisable to seek legal counsel from a TX attorney specializing in Social Security Disability claims.
An experienced SSI lawyer will make sure you give the SSA all of the relevant details to get an accurate disability determination that allows you to receive proper care and compensation. If your SSI claim was denied, a cancer attorney in Texas can help you appeal the decision. Lawyers for cancer patients will carefully review all of the evidence in your file and may be able to provide additional documentation from doctors or specialists that were not previously submitted with your original SSI application. An SSI claim can also be reopened after it has been denied if new evidence is submitted, such as the release of medical records or doctor statements.
If you are struggling to make ends meet while undergoing cancer treatment, having a qualified disability attorney in Texas on your side can help ensure that your case is being considered fairly by SSA officials. An SSI lawyer can guide you through the Social Security claims process, making it easier for you to receive the benefits you need. If you are a cancer patient in Texas, please contact our firm today for assistance with your SSI claim.