Social Security Disability is a Federal insurance program that is funded by contributions by employees, employers and the self-employed. When money is taken out of your paycheck to pay Social Security taxes, part of your contribution is going toward insurance in case you become disabled and can no longer work. In order to be eligible to file for Social Security Disability, you must have worked enough in the period immediately leading up to the date that you claimed to have become disabled.
Work credits are given for every 3 month period that you worked and in general you need 20 credits over the last 10 years prior to filing for disability. Younger people who become disabled require fewer total credits while older people, approaching the retirement age of 62 require more work credits.
Fibromyalgia has always been a very difficult medical condition to diagnose. The disease, that mostly affects women, can be very disabling even though there are very few outward signs of the disease. A lack of obvious symptoms and the chance that the condition can often be attributed to a lack of sleep or a temporary injury, makes winning disability with fibromyalgia very difficult.
Probably the best approach to get Social Security Disability while claiming you have fibromyalgia syndrome is to keep detailed records of visits to a doctor for the condition. If you have been going to a doctor for years and being treated for the condition, you will have some evidence to show the people that make the decision on whether or not to award you Social Security Disability. Your doctor will play a key role in the process, as it is his word and diagnosis that the decision-makers rely on the most.
In many cases, you may be asked to be seen by a doctor that is recommended by Social Security. You must comply in order for your case to proceed.
In addition to medical records, it can work in your favor if you can show that you were forced to miss a lot of work because of your condition. Just as back pain and depression are hard to prove that they are disabling to the point where you cannot work, fibromyalgia falls into the same category. Disability benefits for FMS may be difficult to attain, but if you are truly afflicted with fibromyalgia syndrome, you are entitled to get Social Security Disability.
If you are denied, you will need to file an appeal. Hiring a competent attorney to represent you will probably enhance your chances to be successful and receive your benefits. You will only be charged if the attorney does their job well and gets you Social Security Disability benefits.
Twenty pages about applying for and winning Social Security Disability benefits in Heard & Smith's guidebook. Get the guidebook now.
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