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Can I Get Social Security Disability Benefits for a Mental Health Condition?

Many people wonder if they can get Social Security Disability (SSDI) benefits for a mental health condition. The answer is yes; however, it may be more difficult.  

To receive Social Security Disability benefits, you must have a condition or disability that impacts your ability to work enough to support yourself. If you earn more than $1310 a month, the SSA does not consider you to be disabled enough by your condition to qualify for benefits. You also must have work history to qualify for SSDI—the amount of work history required depends on your age when you apply for benefits and the income you earned while you were working. 

When evaluating your application for benefits, the SSA will look at medical evidence that documents the severity of your disability. If you are applying for SSDI benefits due to a mental health condition, medical evidence may include reports from your psychiatrist or therapist, psychological testing results, and prescription records, so you will need to have this evidence prepared if you’re applying for SSDI.

If you have enough work history, meet the income requirement, and have been disabled by your condition to the point where it impairs your ability to provide for yourself, you may be eligible for SSDI benefits. It can be harder to prove that you are not capable of working enough to earn more than $1310 due to a mental health condition, so you may want to have ample medical evidence that makes it clear why you are unable to work or consult with a SSDI attorney to help you prepare the best possible case and application. 

If you have been unable to work enough to qualify for SSDI benefits, you may be able to qualify for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits, which do not require any work history. You must have less than $2,000 in assets available to you to qualify for SSI benefits. 

If you have been denied Social Security benefits, need help with your application, or simply want to ask an attorney some legal questions, we are here to help. Give us a call at (805) 214-8888 or fill out our Contact Us form to schedule a free consultation. 

The law firm of Ghitterman, Ghitterman and Feld helps employees in the areas of workers’ compensation, social security disability, disability retirement, personal injury, labor and employment issues. Founded in 1956, the firm now has offices in Santa Barbara County, Ventura County, Kern County, Tulare County, and Fresno County. The firm is proud to continue this tradition of securing all available rights for the injured and disabled in our community. For more information about what we do, how we might be about to help, or resources, see our website at www.ghitterman.com.