Do you struggle with bipolar disorder? If so, you likely know all too well that it is a condition that can significantly impact your ability to enjoy life, as well as your ability to work and earn an income to provide for yourself and your family. As a result, you may be considering the possibility of filing a claim for disability benefits – and wondering what it will take to prove that claim and receive the compensation you need. Let’s take a closer look at the condition and the claims process together.
A Closer Look At Bipolar Disorder
Formerly referred to as “manic depression,” bipolar disorder is a mental health condition characterized by extreme mood swings. Often, those who experience it may go from feeling euphoric and happy to feeling lethargic and depressed, despite not experiencing any change in circumstances that would lead to those feelings. Those who experience these extreme mood swings often find that sleep, energy, and day-to-day activities are affected. Some factors that are often cited as causes of bipolar disorder disability include.
Depending upon the severity of the bipolar disorder, it can often be debilitating, and can significantly affect one’s ability to function normally and productively on a daily basis.
Is Bipolar Disorder A Disability?
As a general rule, before the Social Security Administration will pay disability benefits for a particular condition, it must officially find that the condition is disabling. To make this finding, the Social Security Administration will consider a variety of factors including medical evidence, and evidence pertaining to an individual’s ability to work.
In considering these various factors, the Social Security Administration also consults its “Blue Book”. The Blue Book lists various impairments that the SSA considers to be severe enough to be disabling and sets forth the medical criteria that must be met to determine whether a particular applicant has a condition that is eligible to receive benefits.
Fortunately, the SSA does consider bipolar disorder to be a disabling condition generally – although medical evidence will still be necessary, as will evidence pertaining to your inability to work as a result of the condition.
Proving Your Case
Any legal matter can be complex. As a result, it’s essential to have an attorney on your side who can guide you through the process and help you to gather the evidence you need to best prove your case. As you go through this process, it’s important to keep in mind that generally, claims for Social Security Disability for bipolar disorder will be approved or denied largely based on the medical proof you present. As a result, it is essential to regularly seek treatment from a qualified medical provider, both for treatment of the condition itself, and to document the condition thoroughly.
Generally, the Social Security Administration will review your medical records to obtain your official medical diagnosis, and for evidence of how your condition affects your everyday life, including your ability to work and earn an income.
In addition to medical records, other helpful evidence to prove your claim may include:
- Letters from friends and family members regarding how bipolar disorder affects your day-to-day life;
- Letters from current or former co-workers or employers describing how the condition affects your ability to perform your job;
- Any other evidence your attorney advises may be helpful.
Typically, in order to receive Social Security Disability Insurance (SSD) benefits, you must also be able to prove that you are “insured,” which means that you worked a job for a sufficient length of time, and paid part of your income into the Social Security system. If you did not do so, you may still be eligible for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits, provided your condition is found to be disabling and you earn below a certain income level.
Ultimately, having a knowledgeable and experienced attorney on your side who can guide you through the process is essential. At The Law Office of Daniel Berger, we’re here for you.
Call The Law Office Of Daniel Berger Today
If you struggle with Bipolar Disorder, you need and deserve to focus on your mental health and well-being. The last thing you need is the added stress of worrying about legal matters and wondering if and how you’ll pursue the disability benefits you need. Instead, you can leave those matters to us, knowing that you’re putting your claim in good hands when you do.
At The Law Office of Daniel Berger, our knowledgeable and experienced legal team understands every aspect of a disability benefits claim. From beginning to end, we’ll guide you through the process with the expert representation you need and deserve. If you’re ready to get started, we’re here to help. Give us a call today. We look forward to speaking with you soon.