How do I prove I’m disabled for Social Security

In order to qualify for disability benefits under Social Security you have to be found disabled.

Well, thank you Captain Obvious.

Ok. But, what does it mean to be disabled?

  • Are symptoms enough?
  • How about limitations?
  • Is a diagnosis, itself, enough?

In short, no. Under Social Security regulations, it is not enough to have a medical condition.

In order to be disabled under Social Security regulations your impairment(s) have to be severe enough to prevent you from being able to engage in a “Substantial Gainful Activity (SGA).” In most cases, a Substantial Gainful Activity translates to full-time, competitive, employment.

Put another way, the touchstone of a Social Security disability case is the question, “do your conditions keep you from being able to do some type of full-time work.”

That is what Social Security means by “disabled.” And, that is what you have to prove what you are applying for Social Security disability.