Applying for Social Security Disability for a Traumatic Brain Injury

brain injury scanA traumatic brain injury can have a significant impact on one’s life. People who suffer from a serious brain injury are often unable to take care of themselves and unable to work. You may be unable to communicate effectively, lose mobility and have difficulty lifting, carrying or grasping items.

If you have been diagnosed with a traumatic brain injury, you may be eligible to receive Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits. Our attorneys at Sigman Janssen are well-versed in the strict guidelines the Social Security Administration (SSA) sets on being deemed disabled and qualifying for monthly benefits.

Our firm offers an initial consultation free of charge. There is no risk in contacting us and no obligation to retain our services. We only receive payment if we successfully help you obtain disability benefits.

Call (866) 320-4770 for trusted legal help.

Traumatic Brain Injury Diagnosis

A traumatic brain injury (TBI) is an injury that affects how the brain works and is one of the most common causes of disability. A TBI can impact one’s ability to work in several ways. You may suffer from communication problems that prevent you from talking with coworkers effectively. Having memory loss or issues concentrating can make it impossible to focus on day-to-day tasks and complete your work.

Limitations in mobility caused by a TBI can make it difficult to stay in one position for long, especially if your job involves sitting down all day in an office setting. You may need to reposition yourself frequently. If you stand all day at work, you may require multiple breaks to sit down and rest.

A TBI can also cause numbness, tingling and pain in the limbs. This can affect your ability to lift, carry, squat, or bend and the kind of work that you can perform. Suffering from dizziness, headaches, confusion or vision issues, such as blurred vision, can affect almost any type of work duty.

Social Security Disability for TBI

To qualify for SSDI benefits for a traumatic brain injury, certain requirements must be met. Individuals with lasting physical and mental difficulties from a TBI may be eligible for disability in one of two ways:

Blue Book Listing

TBIs have their own listing in the SSA’s Blue Book. The SSA considers a TBI to be brain damage caused by either a skull fracture, closed head injury or penetration by an object into the brain tissue.

To qualify for SSDI, you must meet or equal the required medical severity described in listing 11.18:

  • You cannot control the movement of at least two of your extremities – such as an arm and a leg or two arms or two legs – for no less than three consecutive months after being injured. As a result, you have extreme difficulty being able to balance while standing or walking, standing up from a seated position or using your arms.
  • You have marked physical problems and a marked limitation for no less than three months post-injury in either thinking, finishing tasks, regulating emotions and controlling behavior or interacting with others. (Marked means seriously limiting – problems are worse than moderate.)

Severe TBIs are usually approved for disability. If you suffered a TBI but do not have lasting physical problems, your condition may still be considered under listing 12.02 for neurocognitive disorders.

Residual Functional Capacity

If your limitations are not severe enough to be deemed disabled under a Blue Book listing, the SSA will then evaluate whether your limitations are preventing you from working. A Residual Functional Capacity (RFC) assessment will determine if you can perform work duties despite your physical or mental limitations.

If it is determined that your current or most recent job is too taxing given your limitations, the SSA will assess whether there are less physically or mentally demanding jobs you may be capable of performing. The factors the SSA considers when making this determination include your age, education, work history and your RFC. You may be eligible for disability benefits if you cannot work any job.

Support Your Claim With Medical Evidence

To file a disability claim for a TBI, it is important that you provide sufficient medical evidence of your treatment and functional limitations so that the SSA can accurately assess your condition.

Examples of supportive medical evidence include:

  • Your official TBI diagnosis
  • X-ray, MRI and other imaging results
  • Emergency room records
  • Clinic notes from treating doctors
  • Neuropsychological evaluation
  • Written statements from loved ones

Contact an Experienced Attorney Today

If you are unsure if you qualify for disability benefits, do not hesitate to reach out to an experienced Appleton-based Social Security Disability attorney today. Our firm has helped many claimants file disability claims or appeal denial notices. We are prepared to fight for the benefits you need.

An initial consultation is 100 percent free and confidential. There is no risk in calling us to discuss your claim and no obligation to hire our firm. We only get paid if we help you obtain SSDI benefits.

Free Case Reviews. Ph: (866) 320-4770