The Social Security Disability
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Can You Get SSDI or SSI for IBS? Social Security Disability

Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) is a common gastrointestinal disorder. Symptoms of IBS can significantly affect a person’s quality of life. IBS sufferers who struggle to maintain gainful employment due to their condition can file for disability benefits.

Common symptoms include abdominal pain, bloating, diarrhea, and constipation. People with this condition may have difficulty concentrating at work or require access to an open restroom.

IBS symptoms vary in severity from person to person. Therefore, it’s difficult to prove when someone is experiencing debilitating symptoms. However, with the right evidence, sufferers who are unable to work with IBS can qualify for Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits.

Does IBS Qualify for Disability Benefits?

When you have a condition that prevents you from working, SSD benefits could be the answer to reducing financial strain. It is possible to qualify for Social Security Disability with IBS as long as you meet the Social Security Administration’s (SSA) eligibility criteria. This includes proving that your condition limits your ability to work.

How To Qualify for Social Security Disability With Irritable Bowel Syndrome

Simply having IBS doesn’t qualify you for benefits. While the cause of IBS is not known, symptoms can range from mild and sporadic to severe and frequent. To receive disability for IBS, you’ll need to meet the SSA’s qualifying criteria. This includes:

  • Having a disability that prevents you from performing Substantial Gainful Activity (SGA)
  • Having a disability that has lasted or is expected to last at least 12 months
  • Having a disability that is considered a qualifying impairment by the SSA

Is IBS Considered a Disability?

The SSA’s Blue Book is a guide that lists physical and mental conditions that qualify for disability benefits. The Blue Book does not list IBS as a qualifying impairment. However, people with IBS can still receive benefits if they prove they’re unable to work due to their condition.

Applicants who meet the criteria for a Blue Book listing are considered disabled by the SSA. For people with IBS, they may be able to show that their condition equals a listed impairment in severity.

In many cases, applicants with IBS can apply for SSD under section 5.00 for Digestive Disorders. For example, claimants may satisfy the medical criteria under listing 5.06 for inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). Others may meet the medical criteria under listing 5.08 for weight loss due to any digestive disorder.

In cases where a person’s IBS doesn’t equal a listing, they may still receive a medical-vocational allowance.

A medical-vocational allowance helps disabled individuals who don’t meet SSD medical criteria to receive benefits. To be eligible for this allowance, a claimant must undergo a Residual Functional Capacity (RFC) assessment. This assessment helps determine the claimant’s work capabilities despite their disability while also considering factors such as age, education, work experience, and transferable skills.

If the claimant’s condition clearly prevents them from working and adapting to new job roles, they will qualify for SSD.

IBS SSDI and SSI Eligibility Requirements

If you can’t work because of a medical condition, you can apply for one of two disability benefit programs. These include Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI).

SSDI is for disabled workers who can no longer perform SGA. SSDI benefits are strictly awarded to people who have earned work credits by working and paying into the Social Security System. You can receive SSDI for IBS if you meet these requirements as well as the SSA’s definition of disabled.

SSI is for disabled, blind, or aged individuals with limited income and resources. SSI is a needs-based program and claimants do not need a work history to qualify. You can get SSI for IBS as long as you satisfy the eligibility requirements, meet the SSA’s definition of disabled, and are unable to qualify for SSDI.

Filing for Social Security Disability With IBS: Medical Evidence

If you file for disability with IBS, the SSA will require medical and non-medical evidence of your condition. Examples include:

  • Medical Records: You should have a confirmed medical diagnosis of IBS as well as up-to-date medical records. You should provide these to the SSA as well as evidence that describes your symptoms, their severity, and how they impact your daily life. The SSA will also want to see evidence of previous and current treatments for your IBS and their results.
  • Other Medical Evidence: Other supportive medical evidence includes laboratory findings, operative reports, and imaging results. 
  • Personal Testimonies: You may provide accounts from yourself, friends, coworkers, neighbors, and family members describing your condition and its impact on your life.
  • Physical Limitations: You should document and share how IBS affects your ability to work, perform daily tasks, and engage in social activities.

If you’re ready to apply for SSI or SSDI for Irritable Bowel Syndrome, we encourage you to seek legal guidance. Consulting with a qualified IBS disability lawyer can increase your chances of filing a successful claim.

Work With the Disability Attorneys at Peña & Bromberg

At Peña & Bromberg, we have extensive experience advocating for people in need of disability benefits. If you’re struggling with IBS and asking, “Can you get disability for irritable bowel syndrome?” our team is here to help.

The SSA denies most initial disability claims. However, when working with a qualified attorney, you increase your chances of filing successfully. This is because you reduce the risk of making mistakes on your application, missing deadlines, or failing to provide substantial evidence.

At our law firm, we understand the ins and outs of Social Security Disability. Whether you’re seeking SSDI or SSI for IBS, we can assist in filing your claim. We’ll help gather all the medical and non-medical evidence that is crucial to your case. We’ll also take care of all the legal paperwork and help you understand each step of the process.

If you’re wondering how to apply for Social Security Disability benefits in California, contact our disability lawyers for a free consultation.

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