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Fired due my Multiple Sclerosis. Can I get SSDI benefits?

Recently on our disability forum a user asked, “I have multiple sclerosis. I was recently fired because of errors in my paperwork, memory problems, and the number of missed absences from work. After reviewing my work history, I have come to believe that many of the issues were related to my MS, and I simply do not have the ability to work my current job. If apply for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) will I be approved if I cannot perform my current job?” get-filing-disability-help

Am I disabled with Multiple Sclerosis?

Multiple Sclerosis can be a very serious and debilitating health condition. Because it is degenerative, however, there are many people that have been diagnosed with MS who find that they are able to continue to work. Therefore, for you to win benefits for multiple sclerosis you will have to prove one of the following: 1) your condition meets a listing on the SSA listing of impairment; or 2) You lack the ability to retrain for new work given your age, health condition, transferrable work skills and education. Does my condition meet a listing on the SSA Listing of Impairments? To determine if your condition meets a listing on the SSA Listing of Impairments (which is a listing containing some of the most common conditions the SSA considers automatically disabling) you will need to review section 11.00 Neurological, listing 11.09 Multiple Sclerosis. First, you will need to be diagnosed with MS and you will need medical evidence to support your diagnosis. Next, you will need to meet the criteria outlined in listing 11.09. For example, you could have “constant significant disorganization of function in two of your extremities that results in persistent disturbance of your gross and dexterous movements, or station and gait as described in neurological impairment listing 11.04 B; or you could have loss of visual acuity.” (The listing also lists several other criteria you can meet to be considered disabled). Talk to your doctor if you believe your condition is so severe it meets the listing.

Condition does not meet a listing but you cannot retrain for new work

Another option if you cannot work your current job and your condition does not meet a listing is to prove that you cannot retrain for new work. Winning by proving you cannot retrain for new work is called a medical vocational allowance. Under this process you will need to prove that your MS does not leave you with the residual mental or physical functional capacity to work your current job, and it also does not allow you to retrain for new work. Through the medical vocational allowance process the SSA will review your work history, transferrable work skills, your age and education to determine if you can work any other job available in the local or national economy. The SSA is not concerned with whether you can find work- only whether you can do work. Bottom Line: You can win SSDI benefits for multiple sclerosis either by meeting a listing on the SSA Listing of Impairments or you can prove your cannot work your current job or retrain for new work through a medical vocational allowance. Recent blog: Mental health crisis in Texas what are my rights?