There can be no doubt that many families in Ohio and around the nation have had to deal with the problems that accompany drug or alcohol abuse and addiction. While those who struggle with addiction to substances may be regarded by some as lacking willpower and dedication, more evidence is accumulating that there is a genetic component to many types of addiction, and that simply telling someone to “just say no” is fairly ineffective. There are more counseling and treatment options than there have been in the past, and those in the throes of an addiction have hope for reclaiming their lives. However, there may be issues caused by an substance addiction that interfere with a person’s ability to work and earn a living. Whether or not the addiction itself is classified as an illness, certain psychological conditions attributable to a present or past addiction may include depression, anxiety and personality disorders. So, if one cannot work due to their addiction, can he or she be eligible to receive Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits?
The addiction itself will not, under present law, be enough to create eligibility for benefits. However, there is a possibility that one of the aforementioned conditions might, even if it was caused by the addiction. The question the Social Security Administration (SSA) will ask is if the addiction is a contributing factor that is material to the determination of one’s disability. What this means, in essence, is that the SSA will attempt to determine if you would have the applicable mental disorder if you ceased use of the substance to which you are addicted. If this is the case, and the limitations caused by the condition would still meet the required disability definition, you may still be eligible for benefits.
Anyone struggling with addiction should probably look into getting help to combat the negative effects caused by it. People in this situation should also be aware that they may still be able to receive SSDI benefits to help their financial situation. Anyone who has questions about eligibility and what criteria may be used in their specific case, may want to consider contacting an experienced Ohio disability attorney.