Chronic Lupus Patients Can Qualify For Disability Benefits

by David F. Chermol on Mar. 08, 2021

Health Care 

Summary: The Social Security Administration can provide disability benefits to a person who suffers from any ailment, including lupus, a severe autoimmune disease, if the person had it for more than 12 months and cannot earn a living as a result. Applying for disability benefits can become a confusing and complicated process if you do not know about the entire process.

The Social Security Administration can provide disability benefits to a person  who suffers from any ailment, including lupus, a severe autoimmune disease, if the person had it for more than 12 months and cannot earn a living as a result. Applying for disability benefits can become a confusing and complicated process if you do not know about  the entire process.


Understanding how to fill in the application forms, which rules to follow, and about the regulations and legal process to seek disability benefits is not easy. Hence, it is better to consult a legal professional to know the complete details of getting disability for Lupus


Often, many applications for disability are denied on the first attempt. This happens due to a lack of knowledge about eligibility criteria, mistakes on documents needed to prove disability, insufficient evidence and other common problems.


When can you apply for Social Security Disability benefits for lupus?


Becoming diagnosed with a health condition like lupus can land a patient and his or her family in substantial trouble financially, emotionally and medically. This disease comes with many challenges, and if you have it, it may be physically, mentally and emotionally difficult for you to try to file a disability claim on your own and gather the documents needed to prove that your medical condition is a disability. Some of the symptoms of lupus are the same as or similar to symptoms found in other diseases. When someone has chronic lupus, the situation can become more complicated. So, you can apply and possibly get an approval with the help of an attorney that can gather the critical medical documents that you need to support your claim. When we say chronic lupus, it means the symptoms last more than six weeks and even more.


As per the Lupus Foundation of America, lupus is a chronic and painful autoimmune disease where the immune system mistakenly attacks health cells and there is no known cure. It has the potential to impact and cause deterioration to organs, the skin, and joints. There are more than 16,000 new lupus cases reported every year.


Here are some of the common signs and symptoms that lupus patients face:


  • Headaches

  • Extreme fatigue

  • Fever

  • Painful or swollen joints

  • Anemia

  • Pain in chest

  • Swelling

  • Breathing issues

  • Abnormal blood clotting

  • Hair loss


If you have experienced these symptoms consistently, then you should see a physician to determine whether you have lupus. Once you have a diagnosis, you should seriously think about applying for disability benefits. It is better to apply as soon as you start experiencing symptoms and have been diagnosed with lupus because the application and approval process will take some time. Obtaining disability benefits for lupus early on is a challenge, but you can gain the legal services you need with the right help.


According to the Blue Book, lupus is included in the list of diseases to get disability benefits. 


You can seek disability benefits when-


  • Lupus impacts two or more organs or body systems..

  • You are experiencing two or more prominent symptoms or signs of lupus, like fever, severe fatigue, sudden/involuntary weight loss, and malaise.

  • If the symptoms of lupus are repeatedly occurring, you can seek disability benefits immediately.


To seek disability benefits, you may need to show that your condition substantially limits you from leading a normal life. Some of the restrictions are-


  • Inefficiency in doing daily chores or an inability to do them.

  • Incapacity to work and engage socially with others. 

  • Issues in concentration, persistence, continuity, etc.


SSA may approve your application for lupus disability benefits when-


  • Having lupus has caused you to be unfit to perform work that you have been able to do in the past.

  • You are no  longer fit to do any kind of work to earn a living.

  • Your lupus and related medical conditions are expected to last more than 12 months.


You should submit all of the medical documents and other  details to prove that you have a long-term disability due to lupus to the Social Security Administration. 


When will the SSA consider your disability benefits application for lupus?


Some people with a very severe stage or advanced form of lupus may be able to satisfy the SSA’s blue book listing requirements for lupus, which will enable them to qualify for disability benefits much earlier on. Those who do not meet the criteria have to undergo Residual Functional Capacity (RFC) evaluation to submit a persuasive  disability claim for having lupus. This RFC evaluation is done to check the capability of a person to be able to do work in gainful employment.


Apart from this, you should also provide medical documents in support of your claim. Some of the documents are mentioned below:


  • Diagnostic test reports to show that you have lupus or related symptoms. You need to submit all lab reports showing the effects that you had from having lupus which can include damage to bone, kidney, or other organ, as well as symptoms such as seizures, anemia, and other related troubles.

  • Prescriptions to show the medications that you have taken in the past and currently take to combat the ailment.

  • Longitudinal reports- this is something that your doctor will give and have details about reporting symptoms, the treatment recommended, treatment that you have taken, and after-effects of treatment or medication, etc.

  • If you have been hospitalized, you have to show records of this too.


Consult a Social Security Attorney to get your case evaluated.


It is always better to consult an experienced Philadelphia Social Security Disability Lawyer because your attorney will stand by our side throughout the legal process. An attorney at Chermol & Fishman will help you accurately fill in the appropriate forms, gather the right amount of evidence and set forth your strongest case for disability benefits. Our team will also assist you by representing you in court, and by communicating with the proper  staff and by gathering  all of the necessary documents needed to prove that you have a disability due to lupus.



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