SSD Lawyer for PTSD VictimsPeople often suffer post-traumatic stress disorder after experiencing or witnessing a traumatic event, including military combat, violent crime, abuse, or a natural disaster. This disorder is often serious enough to interfere with daily life, especially when certain sounds or visual cues trigger a flashback. If your PTSD has prevented you from working or required you to cut back on work to the point that you can no longer support yourself, you may qualify for SSD payments.
Learn more about qualifying for SSDI with PTSD, and to discuss your disability application, call Walton Law at 251-455-5819.
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder in the Blue Book
Post-traumatic stress disorder is classified under “mental disorders” in the Listing of Impairments. In this category, there’s a section for trauma- and stressor-related disorders, which includes PTSD. To qualify without additional documentation, you must be able to prove that you meet all of the items under category A, as well as either category B or C. Category A requires that you have medical documentation of all of these symptoms:
- Exposure to serious injury, violence, and actual or threatened death.
- Involuntary re-experiencing of the event, which may include dreams, flashbacks, or intrusive memories.
- Avoiding reminders of the event.
- Disturbances and changes in mood and behavior.
- Increased arousal and reactivity, such as sleep disturbances or an exaggerated startle response.
If you have all of these symptoms, you must then meet Category B or C. Category B requires extreme limitation of one of the following or two of the following:
- Understanding, remembering, or applying information.
- Interacting with others.
- Concentrating, persisting, or maintaining pace.
- Adapting or managing oneself.
If you do not qualify under this category, you may meet the requirements for C:
- Your disorder is serious and persistent, which means that you have medical documentation of it lasting at least two years and resulting in:
- Treatment, therapy, psychosocial supports, or a structured setting that minimizes the symptoms of your disorder.
- Minimal capacity to adapt to changes that are not part of your daily life.
Documenting Your Disability
Documenting your disability is a crucial part of proving your case to the SSA. Consider working with a mental health specialist who understands the process of applying for SSD and who knows what the SSA looks for in an application. They may be able to fill out an RFC form to highlight the shortcomings in your ability to work. Talk to your mental healthcare provider about addressing the following issues in their paperwork:
- Your ability to pay attention and concentrate throughout the duration of a work task.
- Ability to understand and carry out both simple and complex work instructions.
- Go to work without accruing multiple absences.
- Maintain a work routine without specialized supervision or guidance.
- Interact properly with coworkers, supervisors, and customers or clients.
You may also want to gather documentation from others in your life, including friends, family members, and bosses or coworkers. Rather than having them talk about your disorder, which should only be done by your healthcare provider, ask them to talk about their observations of you, their interactions with you, and how you function in a work environment.
As you may have noticed in the Blue Book listing that covers PTSD, you need medical documentation for everything related to your disorder and how it impacts you. Your medical records should include information on the traumatic event you suffered, what an episode of PTSD looks like for you, and what causes your symptoms to start or worsen.
Your doctor may also comment on how frequent your episodes occur, how they impact you at work, and how they affect you at home. This information is useful in determining whether or not you can function as needed in a work environment.
Turn to Walton Law Today
Post-traumatic stress disorder can change your life forever, and it if prevents you from working or supporting your family, you may be entitled to SSD benefits. The application process can be overwhelming and confusing, due to the amount of evidence required by the SSA. Working with an experienced disability attorney is helpful. Find out how Walton Law can help by calling us at 251-455-5819 or contacting us online.