Heart Failure And Disability
You’ve heard of it a million times before. Some call it, “the big one.” Others have termed it, “the widow maker.” Fortunately, a heart attack doesn’t have to be the end. In fact, roughly 90% of heart attacks are non-fatal. However, there is bad news. As prevalent as heart attacks may be, they’re only one type of heart problem.
There are many issues associated with the heart.
Many people suffer from heart disease. Some people have Heart Failure And Disability. Other individuals must manage heart irregularities and inadequacies. In rare cases, people may even need heart transplants. Overall, there are many reasons that people have heart problems.
Heart problems can significantly impact a person’s quality of living. You may have to take regular medication. You may have to monitor yourself. You may have extensive medical bills and treatment costs. You may even have to endure numerous hospital visits. Some people are completely unable to work and earn a living.
Your life may never be the same.
Heart Disease And Disability Benefits
This is why the Social Security Administration (SSA) is so important. The SSA is a federal governmental agency charged with administering a variety of benefits to qualified recipients. To receive these benefits, individuals must apply. Such applications can be long and daunting.
Fortunately, top disability lawyers can help. When applying for Heart Attack Disability Benefits, an applicant should have a general grasp of the SSA. The administration provides two programs for disability applicants. These include the Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) programs.
Generally, the SSDI program is for disabled workers with a qualifying history of work. Typically, older workers must have longer work histories. The SSA will assign work credits for each disabled applicant. An applicant can earn as many as four work credits annually.
In 2019, one work credit is the equivalent of $1,360 in earnings. Most applicants need 40 credits. Twenty of those credits should come in a 10-year period that ends with the year the applicant became disabled.
Disability For Heart Problems
If you need disability benefits for your cardiac issues, you need to prove a total disability. A total disability is not a short-term or partial disability. It is a disability that is medically determinable. In other words, it is determined by medical professionals to be legitimate. A total disability is also severe and lasting. Most importantly, it is a disability that prevents the individual from engaging in significant work.
According to the Social Security Administration (SSA), a total disability must:
- Have lasted, or be expected to last, for at least a full year; or
- Be expected to lead to imminent death; and
- Prevent the applicant from engaging in substantial gainful activity (SGA)
The SSA defines SGA as a monthly threshold. If you earn more than the allowed SGA amount, you are determined ‘not disabled.’ The administration recognizes that many people struggle with conditions. However, only severe conditions significantly impact the ability to make a living. If your disability is partial, you have other options.
These are the primary reasons the SSA considers substantial gainful activity (SGA). Again, heart problems alone may not earn you benefits. To receive Heart Failure Disability, an applicant must prove a severe and lasting condition. As serious as some heart problems may be, the SSA may still deny benefits.
It is important that disability applicants understand that not all heart problems are directly related to heart failure or heart attacks. Nonetheless, the SSA will consider all heart problems under the same disability standards.
What Benefits Can I Claim After A Heart Attack?
Following a heart attack or any heart problem, an applicant should do two things. Firstly, a disability applicant should consult medical professionals. Secondly, a disability applicant should consult a top disability lawyer. A good attorney understands the specific SSA criteria.
The SSA uses a comprehensive listing of conditions called “the blue book.” All listings are organized based on the various types of medical conditions and disorders. Heart attacks and heart problems are considered impairments under “Section 4.00 Cardiovascular System.”
The SSA considers cardiovascular impairments any impairments that:
- Affect the normal functioning of the heart or circulatory system. This includes any capillaries, veins, arteries and the drainage of lymph.
Such conditions may also result from one or more consequences of heart disease.
- These consequences include chronic heart failure, for which Heart Failure Disability Benefits are often approved. Another consequence is discomfort and pain due to reduced blood flow to the heart. A third consequence is the loss of consciousness due to any cardiac problem. The fourth consequence is bluish discolouration due to lack of blood in the arteries.
Disorders and impairments of the veins and arteries are also included.
The SSA will analyse the full body of medical evidence when making these determinations. In some cases, many other bodily organs may be affected. The SSA will evaluate more than merely the heart. Again, the whole circulatory system may be affected. In some cases, only certain parts are affected.
Proving a cardiovascular impairment can be a complex and time-consuming process. Many conditions may apply.
What Heart Conditions Qualify For Disability?
Your lawyer will help you meet an SSA impairment listing. If you do not match a listing, your lawyer can help you ‘equal’ a listing. This means that you have an equally impairing condition like those listed. If you do not have an ‘equal’ listing, you must prove that you are significantly impaired in your work ability.
Listed impairments include
- Chronic heart failure
- Heart transplant(s)
- Ischemic heart diseasee
- Aneurysm of the aorta or primary branches
- Recurring arrhythmias
- Symptomatic congenital heart disease
- Peripheral arterial disease; and
- Chronic venous insufficiency
Overall, there are numerous conditions associated with the heart and the circulatory system. Your heart is your life. If you’ve suffered a disabling heart condition, you deserve help. You need it. So get it, and get it from the people who understand disability. Contact the seasoned lawyers at Khattar Law, LLC today.
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