Can you get Social Security disability benefits for social phobia? The short answer is yes.
However, knowing that a condition can be disabling does not tell you HOW to prove that social phobia is disabling in your case.
As in any Social Security disability case, you have to show that social phobia keeps you from being able to engage in a substantial gainful activity (SGA).
Social phobia most likely affects your ability to work by making it impossible for you to have more than very occasional contact with the public, co-workers, or supervisors. That would be the workplace limitation that would preclude most kinds of substantial gainful activity and prevent you from being able to work.
You can prove this limitation by obtaining supporting statements showing isolation, difficulty interacting with others, avoiding social events — or avoiding contact with others during social events, going to the store to shop at 1:00 in the morning to avoid dealing with others.
Several of my clients have shared with me that they have left their groceries at the check out line because there were suddenly too many people in line, or there was some kind of commotion, or some other problem.
These cases are very personal. There is no recipe guaranteed to win your Social Security claim. But, if you just can’t be around people, if you avoid contact, even with people you like, you may qualify for Social Security.
It is often helpful to enlist the aid of an attorney, or even a family member, to help you list all the ways social phobia/social anxiety disorder affects your ability to function. Then figure out ways to document these problems.
Of course, as I have talked about many times before, medical records are critical. But, especially in social phobia cases, you will need to go beyond the medical records when developing your case.