Does Diabetes Qualify For Disability Benefits?

Published on: January 24, 2024

Do you have diabetes – or suspect that you might? If so, you probably already know that this condition can limit your ability to work regularly and enjoy many of the normal activities of everyday life. If you find yourself in this situation, you may be experiencing significant financial stress – and that's understandable. As a result, you might be wondering if you qualify for disability benefits. That's an important question to ask. Let's look more closely at the condition itself, the benefits that may be available, and what is required to qualify for those benefits.

What is Diabetes?

Officially known as Diabetes Mellitus, diabetes is an endocrine disorder that affects how the body processes sugar. Those who have diabetes typically do not have enough insulin to regulate their blood sugar properly.

There are three primary types of diabetes. These include:

  • Type 1: The cause of Type 1 diabetes is not entirely known. Many medical professionals think it is genetic or triggered by a particular catalyst, like a virus. Those with Type 1 diabetes have immune systems that attack the cells in the pancreas that are intended to make insulin.
  • Type 2: Unlike Type 1 diabetes, which has unknown causes, it is generally accepted that Type 1 diabetes is often related to health issues like obesity and diet. Typically, this condition develops after the age of 40 – although this is not always the case.
  • Gestational diabetes: Gestational diabetes is a temporary condition that only occurs during pregnancy. Gestational diabetes is triggered by hormones that make the cells more insulin-resistant. Although this condition can lead to various complications during pregnancy, it typically resolves at the end of the pregnancy.

Because gestational diabetes typically resolves in less than a year upon conclusion of a pregnancy, it typically does not qualify for Social Security disability benefits. If you struggle with one of the other two types of diabetes, however, you may be eligible for disability benefits. Qualification for benefits will depend upon the severity of the condition, as well as meeting various other factors required by the Social Security Administration.

Is Your Condition Disabling?

To determine whether or not a condition is "disabling," the Social Security Administration will usually consult its Listing of Impairments, also known as its "Blue Book." Diabetes 1 and 2 are both listed in the Blue Book under the category of "endocrine disorders," along with a list of typically accompanying symptoms.

Although being listed as a disabling condition is one factor to be considered, it is essential to understand that this is only one part of the process. In addition to being a qualifying medical condition, the condition must render the individual seeking benefits disabled for at least one continuous calendar year or more. The individual must also have either been “insured” by the Social Security Administration, or have income and resources below a certain level.

Fortunately for those struggling with diabetes, medical advances have made it possible to control the condition fairly well with insulin and diet. In those cases, if an individual can still function fairly normally and work as he or she otherwise would, benefits will likely not be awarded.

In some instances, however, diabetes may be particularly difficult to control – or it may have led to a related health condition that renders the individual disabled. Some conditions that are frequently linked to uncontrolled diabetes include:

  • Diabetic neuropathy
  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Diabetic retinopathy
  • Skin impairments
  • Diabetic nephropathy
  • Alzheimer’s Disease
  • Several other health-related conditions.

If you are able to establish through sufficient medical proof that you have one of these conditions and that the condition has rendered you disabled for a period of one calendar year or more, you may qualify for disability benefits from the Social Security Administration.

How much you might receive in benefits will depend upon various factors, including your income level, how long you worked, and how much money you paid into the Social Security system. It will not, however, depend upon the particular medical condition itself.

For this reason, it is always wise to consult an attorney who knows and understands the law and can offer personalized advice, uniquely tailored to your individual circumstances. At Sackett Law, we’re here for you.

Contact Disability Experts Today

If you struggle with diabetes or another disabling condition, you deserve to focus on receiving the care and treatment you need for your condition so that you can enjoy life with those you love. Struggling with a disability is difficult enough – and you don't need added legal stress on top of it. That's why you should contact the knowledgeable and experienced legal team at Disability Experts. We know and understand every aspect of the law concerning disability benefits, and we're ready to help you fight for the benefits you need and deserve. If you're ready to get started, give us a call. We look forward to speaking with you soon.



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