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Traumatic Brain Injury

Tips on Applying for Disability Benefits with a Traumatic Brain Injury

If you or someone you know has suffered a traumatic brain injury (TBI), you may be able to receive disability benefits through Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI).

Traumatic Brain Injuriesare caused by a sudden blow to the head which causes damage to the brain, and often are accompanied by bleeding inside the head or swelling of the brain. It is estimated that every year, one and a half million Americans suffer traumatic brain injuries caused by falls, auto accidents, sports injuries, and other traumatic events. Many of our veterans have returned from combat in Iraq and Afghanistan with TBIs caused by homemade roadside bombs. A whole host of serious medical problems can result from a TBI— stroke and epilepsy among them.

If you want to apply for Social Security disability benefits based on a TBI, it is important to remember that, as with most disorders, it is not the name of the impairment that qualifies you for disability benefits, but rather, proving the symptoms prevent you from working.

The Social Security Administration maintains a list of conditions with detailed requirements for when the SSA will deem a mental or physical condition to be disabling. If an individual matches the requirements in the listings (also called the “Blue Book”) they can qualify for disability payments.

A traumatic brain injury claim must be supported by medical evidence such as physical examinations, or lab tests. Additionally, you must demonstrate that you have significant functional limitations as a result of your TBI, which prevent you from performing any of your past work or any other type of work that your age, education, and skills might qualify you for.

However, Nash attorney Dan Rosen cautions that “even when you meet the listed eligibility requirements, the path to winning benefits is not easy to navigate. The lawyers in our firm have fought hard and won Social Security disability benefits for many clients with TBIs, because we have conclusively proven that either the listing requirements have been met (and backed this up with extensive medical evidence) or demonstrated that their brain injuries prevented our clients from sustaining gainful employment. Oftentimes, in addition to medical evidence, statements and testimony from family members and friends regarding symptoms can be crucial in a case involving a TBI.”

There are many more rules and conditions governing TBI and disability. Our experience has shown that TBI disability cases can be complex, but they are winnable. For a free evaluation of your case, call the Chicago Social Security Disability Attorneyscall the Chicago Social Security Disability Attorneys at Nash Disability Law or you can email us.