How Social Security evaluates visual disorders

by | Oct 8, 2011 | Social Security Disability

Suffering from a job-related injury can be frustrating. It can be difficult navigating the process of claiming benefits. For many, Social Security disability insurance is an option. But there are many requirements and regulations that dictate eligibility.

Social Security defines visual disorders as abnormalities in the eye, brain, or optic nerve that result in a loss of visual function. This loss can be the limited ability to read, distinguish details, or respond to stimuli in the peripheral field of vision. Additionally, Social Security defines statutory blindness as visual acuity equal or lesser than 20/200, even through the use of corrective lenses.

Before awarding insurance benefits, recipients must demonstrate evidence of a visual disorder, but do not need to provide evidence of the cause of statutory blindness. Acceptable evidence can be the results of a medically certified eye examination. In cases involving visual disorders, the eye examination report should show the cause of visual loss. Those claiming benefits have to show that their eye problems prevent them from doing their job in a normal work environment.

Visual disorders can prevent sufferers from taking on most types of work. For example, the inability to distinguish fine details or use peripheral vision can prohibit all commercial driving jobs, in addition to making almost any work difficult. Those with statutory blindness may have difficulty performing almost any work, and are prime candidates for Social Security benefits.

Benefits are available for all people whose visual disorder impacts their ability to comfortably work in a normal work environment. The process for receiving benefits, however, can be confusing without the assistance of a professional. A professional can help you secure the correct eye examination documents to begin receiving benefits, as well as assist you in preparing applications and demonstrating need.

To learn more about Social Security Disability claims, go to the SSA.gov website here.

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