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Can You Get Disability After Back Surgery?

Back problems, and how they interfere with one’s ability to work, are some of the most common reasons people apply for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI). In fact, the SSA’s annual report on the disability benefits program for 2019 found that most disabled workers belonged to the “musculoskeletal system and connective tissue” category of diseases. Back pain, trunk pain, and spinal disorders are very common conditions in this group.

If you suffer from back pain and receive back surgery to correct it, you may be wondering if you’re able to collect disability benefits afterward. Because back pain is so subjective, or personal, there’s no singular answer to this question that will apply to everyone.

However, we’ll explain common types of back surgeries, qualifying for disability, and receiving benefits post-back surgery below. If you need further help understanding your disability benefits and options in Tennessee, contact The Law Offices of Michael Hartup. Call our Jackson office at 731-424-5559 or fill out an online form to get started.

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How Can Injured Service Members Ensure They Get Disability After Separation?

Before you leave active duty, or separate, you may be able to apply for VA benefits during your service. If you’ve suffered any illnesses or injuries during your service, or noticed that they’ve become worse while serving, you may be able to receive disability benefits after separation. 

It’s a good idea to document your condition and understand your options now, before you separate, so that you can get your disability benefits sooner. 

In this blog, attorney Michael Hartup discusses what service members can do to receive benefits after separation. If you need assistance understanding your disability benefits options, The Law Offices of Michael Hartup can help. Call our Jackson, Tennessee office at 731-424-5559 or fill out an online form to get started.

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How Can Injured Service Members Ensure They Get Disability After Separation?

Before you leave active duty, or separate, you may be able to apply for VA benefits during your service. If you’ve suffered any illnesses or injuries during your service, or noticed that they’ve become worse while serving, you may be able to receive disability benefits after separation. 

It’s a good idea to document your condition and understand your options now, before you separate, so that you can get your disability benefits sooner. 

In this blog, attorney Michael Hartup discusses what service members can do to receive benefits after separation. If you need assistance understanding your disability benefits options, The Law Offices of Michael Hartup can help. Call our Jackson, Tennessee office at 731-424-5559 or fill out an online form to get started.

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Most Common Disabilities that Qualify for SSD

According to the Social Security Administration (SSA), disability benefits were paid to almost 10 million people in 2019. Disabled workers made up the largest share of disabled beneficiaries at 86 percent, and the average monthly benefit received was $1,257.65.

With workers accounting for the majority of disabled beneficiaries, it’s worth asking: which disabilities are most common among them?

If you’re considering applying for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI), it may help to know which conditions qualify most often for benefits.

Social Security Disability attorney Michael Hartup breaks down common disabilities that qualify for benefits.

If you’re a Tennesseean who needs help understanding or filling out your SSD application or appealing a decision, contact the Law Offices of Michael Hartup by calling (731) 424-5559 or filling out an online form.

How the SSA Determines Disabilities

The SSA analyzes its beneficiaries in its annual report by various factors, including diagnostic groups.

Diagnostic groups are a group of conditions often based on body systems; for example, mental disorders, diseases of the respiratory system, and congenital anomalies are examples.

Because there are so many beneficiaries in the United States with unique disabling conditions — and sometimes, multiple conditions — the SSA doesn’t break down each diagnostic group further by specific diseases or illnesses.

They do have a list of impairments that are considered approved disabilities if they impact your ability to work, however.  

Diseases of the Musculoskeletal System and Connective Tissue

The SSA’s annual report on the SSDI program for 2019 found that the largest category of diagnoses was diseases of the musculoskeletal system and connective tissue. Over 34% of disabled workers receiving benefits belonged to this diagnostic group.

Common diseases and conditions in this group that qualify for SSDI might include:

  • Back pain or trunk pain from poorly healed fractures, soft tissue injuries, or arthritis
  • Spinal disorders due to abnormal curvatures of the spine impairing the ability to walk, pain from nerve tissue, or degenerative spine conditions
  • Major dysfunction of a joint from chronic joint pain and stiffness, limited range of motion, or malformed joints
  • Amputation of hand(s) or one or both lower extremities

Mood Disorders

Over 13% of disabled workers receiving benefits belonged to this diagnostic group. Mood disorders fall under a larger category in the SSA’s report, mental disorders.

Together with other mental disorders such as schizophrenia and organic mental disorders, the overall category of mental disorders affects 28% of workers.

The SSA’s list of impairments organizes adult mental disorders into more categories. Common illnesses and conditions in the mental disorder group might include:

  • Depressive, bipolar and related disorders. This can include depression, anxiety, or bipolar disorder. These disorders are characterized by irritability, feelings of hopelessness or guilt, suicidal thoughts, changes in appetite or sleep habits, mood swings, or loss of interest in life.
  • Schizophrenia and other psychotic disorders. These disorders are characterized by hallucinations, delusions, social withdrawal, mood swings, paranoia, or odd beliefs and mannerisms.
  • Trauma- and stressor-related disorders. This can include post-traumatic stress disorder and other similar disorders. Symptoms and signs include distressing memories or flashbacks, persistent feelings of fear or anger, difficulty concentrating or sleeping, and avoidant behavior.
  • Neurodevelopmental disorders. These disorders appear during childhood or adolescence, though they may not be diagnosed until adulthood. Disorders may include learning disorders, borderline intellectual functioning, and tic disorders such as Tourette syndrome. (Autism spectrum disorder is evaluated in a separate category.)

Diseases of the Nervous System and Sense Organs

Ten percent of disabled workers receiving benefits belonged to this diagnostic group. In the SSA’s list of impairments, conditions affecting the nervous system and conditions affecting sense organs are organized separately.

Common diseases and conditions in this group might include:

  • Hearing loss. The SSA generally requires specific examinations that provide evidence of the severity of your hearing loss.
  • Blindness. The SSA defines blindness as “central visual acuity of 20/200 or less in the better eye with the use of a correcting lens.” There are special rules for people who are blind to help them return to or go to work.
  • Epilepsy, a pattern of recurrent and unprovoked seizures due to abnormal electrical activity in the brain.
  • Multiple sclerosis, an inflammatory degenerative disorder that disrupts the transmission of nerve impulses between the brain and other parts of the body.

Diseases of the Circulatory System

Eight percent of disabled workers receiving benefits belonged to this diagnostic group. In the SSA’s list of impairments, conditions affecting the circulatory system are organized in a category called the cardiovascular system, another term for this organ system.

Common diseases and conditions in this group might include:

  • Hypertension, or high blood pressure
  • Congenital heart disease or any abnormality of the heart of major blood vessels present at birth
  • Chronic heart failure (CHF), or the inability of the heart to pump enough blood to body tissues
  • Ischemic heart disease (IHD), commonly known as angina, results when coronary arteries are narrowed or obstructed and can lead to heart attacks
  • Arrhythmias, or changes in the regular beat of the heart

Speak with an SSDI lawyer in Tennessee

There are many other common conditions and disabilities that may mean you qualify for SSDI, including respiratory disorders, cancers, immune system disorders, and more.

Even if your impairment is not listed in the SSA’s listing of impairments, you may still qualify for SSDI if you can show that your condition prevents you from working.

Understanding and applying for SSDI can be confusing. That’s why SSDI attorney Michael Hartup serves clients who need help with Social Security Disability and Veterans Disability claims.

If you’re searching for advice from a skilled SSDI lawyer in Jackson, Tennessee, contact the Law Offices of Michael Hartup online or by calling (731) 424-5559. You may also like and follow our firm’s Facebook page for further resources and news updates.

Can You Work and Collect VA Disability?

Generally, VA disability benefits are awarded to veterans who have an illness or injury that was caused by or worsened during active military service.

For many veterans who receive disability compensation, their benefits replace the income they’d be receiving from employment.

But is it possible to work and collect VA disability?

The short answer: in some cases. In this post, Tennessee veterans disability attorney Michael Hartup explains when you can work while receiving VA disability benefits and when you can’t. 

If you need further help understanding your disability benefits, applying for VA disability, or appealing a claim, call The Law Offices of Michael Hartup at 731-424-5559. You may also contact us by filling out an online form.

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Can I Receive VA Disability for Hearing Loss or Tinnitus?

More than 28 million Americans are affected by hearing loss; more than half of those over age 75.

Hearing problems, including the ringing or buzzing sensation known as tinnitus, are the most common service-connected disability among veterans.

If you are a veteran, you may be able to receive VA disability benefits for hearing loss or tinnitus. The team at The Law Offices of Michael Hartup explains what the VA can do for you and your service-associated hearing conditions below. 

If you need further assistance applying for disability benefits, our attorneys at Michael Hartup are ready to help. Call our Jackson, Tennessee office at (731) 424-5559 or fill out a contact form online. 

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How is Social Security Disability Funded?

Social Security is the major source of income for most of the elderly, but it provides more than just retirement benefits.

Disabled workers and their dependents account for 14.5 percent of total benefits paid. One out of every 6 U.S. residents collected Social Security benefits in June 2020.

While both Social Security Disability Insurance (SSD or SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) are popular benefits programs, do you know how both are funded? Where does the money come from that is paid out to beneficiaries?

Below, disability attorney Michael Hartup explains how both programs are funded and who is eligible to receive those benefits.

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How Does the SSA Determine Disabilities and Qualifications for Benefits?

Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) provides benefits to help replace lost income for disabled individuals who can no longer work. In December 2016, more than 260,000 disabled Tennesseeans met the SSA’s strict definition of a disability and received Social Security benefits.

To receive benefits, the SSA must first determine you are disabled and whether you qualify for benefits. Below, our social security disability attorney explains how the SSA determines disabilities and qualifications for benefits.

If you live in Tennessee and need help applying for benefits or appealing your SSDI ruling, call our disability attorney at (731) 513-5279.

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Veterans Disability and Individual Unemployability

“Individual Unemployability,” also called Total Disability based on Individual Unemployability (TDIU), is part of the VA’s disability compensation program. If you’re unable to work because of a service-connected disability, you may qualify to receive IU benefits.

The Law Offices of Michael Hartup explains how Individual Unemployability works below. If you need assistance applying for Individual Unemployability in Tennessee or want help appealing a denied Veteran Disability claim, call Michael Hartup at (731) 424-5559.

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How Long Will SSD Benefits Last?

When you’re receiving Social Security Disability (SSD) payments, you may think your benefits last forever without any further communication with the Social Security Administration (SSA). However, that’s not the case.

The experienced disability lawyer at The Law Offices of Michael Hartup has put together this guide to help you see how long Social Security Disability benefits last.

If you have further questions on the benefits program or you need help applying for social security disability, contact The Law Offices of Michael Hartup by calling (731) 424-5559.

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