Stroke

Disability for Stroke in Chicago

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Social Security evaluates an applicant’s eligibility for Social Security Disability in several ways: The Blue Book Listing for Stroke or other “Listing;” what is known as a Medical-Vocational Allowance, or a broader assessment of an inability to sustain employment.

It reviews applications for disability based on a stroke under the listing for Vascular Insult to the Brain:

  • A. Sensory or motor aphasia resulting in ineffective speech or communication persisting for at least 3 consecutive months after the insult.
  • OR
  • B. Disorganization of motor function in two extremities, resulting in an extreme limitation in the ability to stand up from a seated position, balance while standing or walking, or use the upper extremities, persisting for at least 3 consecutive months after the insult.
  • OR
  • C. Marked limitation in physical functioning and in one of the following areas of mental functioning, both persisting for at least 3 consecutive months after the insult:
    1. Understanding, remembering, or applying information or
    2. Interacting with others or
    3. Concentrating, persisting, or maintaining pace or
    4. Adapting or managing oneself.

Medical Vocational Allowance

If your stroke does not meet or closely match the criteria of any listing in the SSA’s Blue Book, you may still be able to qualify for disability benefits. To qualify, you must prove based on your application and supporting medical documentation that you are severely limited by the effects of your stroke and that you are unable to maintain gainful employment.

After reviewing your application and medical records, the SSA will then analyze your application to determine your ability to perform and complete everyday tasks, including typical job functions.

If that analysis confirms that you are debilitated by the lasting effects of your stroke, then you may be able to receive SSD benefits under what is called a medical vocational allowance—a finding that you are disabled despite the fact that you do not meet or match a Blue Book listing. This will require a thorough review of whether you are able to sustain the demands of your past relevant work (the work you performed at a substantial and gainful level for the 15 years prior to your application) and if not, whether you have the “residual functional capacity” to sustain the demands of any other work in the national economy, considering factors of your age, education, and work experience.