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Do certain mental disorders qualify for SSD?

When many people think about Social Security Disability (SSD), they often assume that only those with physical disabilities may qualify for benefits. That’s not actually true.

Mental health concerns can also be debilitating on a daily basis, thus affecting your ability to remain employed in your typical line of work. You could potentially qualify for Social Security Disability benefits, at least in part, based on the mental health diagnosis and other potential impairments you might have. 

Categories of qualifying mental health conditions

There are 11 distinct categories into which different mental or behavioral health or cognitive concerns may fall, which may make you eligible for SSD benefits, including the following: 

  • Personality or impulse-control disorders
  • Eating disorders
  • Anxiety and obsessive-compulsive disorders
  • Schizophrenia or other psychotic disorders
  • Autism spectrum disorder
  • Somatic sensitivities and related conditions
  • Intellectual disorders
  • Neurocognitive disorders
  • Bipolar or other depressive disorders
  • Neurodevelopmental conditions
  • Trauma or stress-induced disorders

Having received a diagnosis for one of these disorders may not be, in itself, enough to make you eligible for SSD. Your eligibility for such benefits will likely be contingent upon various factors, including:

  • Proof of diagnosis
  • Documentation showing the extent of your impairment and treatment you’ve received
  • Information chronicling how your diagnosis affects your ability to work
  • Documentation regarding how long your condition is expected to last

You may want to spend some time reading over SSD eligibility requirements related to mental health concerns before applying for benefits. The Social Security Administration can take some time to review applications, so you want to ensure that you give yourself the strongest chance of success the first time you apply for benefits. 

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