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Can Drugs or Alcohol Affect My Disability Claim?

Over the years more and more people have changed their viewpoints on addiction from a purely criminal act to a disease. There’s no doubt that addiction to drugs and alcohol can majorly impact just about every aspect of your life. You may find your addiction interfering with your relationships or even your ability to do your job. For this reason many people may want to file a claim for Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits.

The Social Security Administration (SSA) does not currently provide disability benefits for individuals who are unable to work purely due to an addiction. But sometimes addiction may go hand-in-hand with a commonly SSA-approved disability. 

The Relationship of Addiction to Your Disability

When someone becomes disabled or becomes increasingly disabled as a result of his or her addiction, the SSA will not approve a claim for benefits. However, if you suffer from addiction that has no influence on your disability, it likely will not impact your ability to receive SSD benefits. It’s important that the applicant still meets the SSA’s guidelines

Even for those individuals who are no longer addicted, the SSA will often request your medical records to determine whether you suffered from your disability condition before the period of substance abuse. 

Without a medical record indicating your condition before your addiction began, the SSA may confer with your treating doctor to receive his or her medical opinion. If your medical professional can’t say with any certainty whether or not your condition would go away if you stopped using the substance(s) in question, it’s likely that the SSA will still grant you SSD benefits. 

What to do if you are in Recovery

If you are in recovery, we first wish to applaud and congratulate you on your hard work. It’s in your best interest to speak with a knowledgeable and experienced SSD attorney who knows which documents are best for proving or supporting your claim. If the condition from which you suffer is mental, this becomes even more important. 

Sometimes those individuals who are approved by the SSA are unable to manage their money responsibly because of their addiction. If the SSA believes that you fall into this category, it will require that you find a representative payee who can receive your checks on your behalf, therefore, preventing you from using your money in an irresponsible manner. 

The Las Vegas SSD Attorneys at Roeschke Law, LLC Can Help

If you or a loved one is struggling with a disability that prevents the ability to work, you may not know how to proceed. Fortunately, the attorneys at Roeschke Law, LLC can help. We understand the impact that a disability can have on your physical, emotional, and financial health. That’s why it’s our mission to help you. To learn more, or to schedule a consultation, contact us today!