Being diagnosed with mesothelioma can turn your life upside down.
While there are treatments that can extend your life expectancy, it goes without saying that life after mesothelioma can never be the same. As the disease progresses, you will lose the ability to work, afford treatment and care for your loved ones.
Social Security Disability may offer financial relief
The Social Security Disability (SSD) program was established to provide financial relief to qualified workers who can no longer work due to a disability. However, you are not automatically entitled to SSD benefits even if your condition is terminal. Rather, you must be eligible to receive the benefits.
You cannot qualify for SSD benefits by simply suspecting that you could be having mesothelioma. It is important that you are positively diagnosed by a mesothelioma expert. Some of the tests that might aid in the diagnosis include X-rays, CT scans, MRIs and biopsies.
To be eligible for SSD benefits, your medical condition must meet SSI’s strict definition of disability. That is:
- Your condition prevents you from engaging in substantial gainful activity
- Your condition is expected to last for at least one year or end in death
If you have just been diagnosed and don’t have many limitations, you may not qualify for benefits. If you have been diagnosed for a while and/or have significant physical limitations, you may qualify.
Mesothelioma and Compassionate Allowance
Recently, the SSA added two types of mesothelioma (peritoneal and pleural) to its Compassionate Allowance List. This is a list of severe medical conditions that the SSA considers disabling conditions. Individuals with these conditions get their claims expedited to ensure that they receive the benefits they need.
Being diagnosed with mesothelioma can be devastating. Find out how you can pursue Social Security Disability benefits if you are diagnosed with this terminal condition.