Am I Eligible for Presumptive Disability Benefits from Social Security?

By Michelle Shvarts
Principal Attorney

Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits are available for people who have a qualifying disabling condition. SSI benefits are needs-based and means-tested, which means you can qualify for this type of Social Security Disability income only if you have very limited income and few assets. Many people who need SSI benefits struggle greatly with paying basic bills and covering the routine costs of daily living. This is why it is such a major problem that it can take months for the Social Security Administration to approve claims. The good news is, presumptive disability benefits may be made available in some cases.

Do You Qualify for Presumptive SSI Disability Benefits?

Presumptive disability benefits are designed to provide necessary income to applicants for SSI benefits while the review process is ongoing and the benefits application is pending. The Social Security Administration provides presumptive disability benefits in cases where you meet the specific criteria set forth for eligibility. This includes having a very serious impairment such that you are presumed to be disabled.

Some examples of conditions where it is possible to qualify for presumptive disability benefits include:

  • Aids or symptomatic HIV
  • Total and complete deafness or blindness
  • Amputation of one leg at the hip, or of at least two limbs
  • A spinal cord injury causing at least partial paralysis
  • Down syndrome
  • A stroke that occurred at least three months prior and that has caused difficulty walking or moving either hand or arm
  • Cerebral palsy
  • Muscular Dystrophy
  • Muscular atrophy causing impaired movements, impaired walking, or speech impairment
  • Severe mental retardation if you are age seven or older
  • End-stage kidney disease that necessitates chronic dialysis
  • Lou Gehrig’s disease
  • Terminal illness resulting in referral to hospice care with six or fewer months to live

These are just some of the many conditions considered severe enough to qualify you for presumptive Supplemental Security Income benefits on the basis of a disability.

An experienced Los Angeles Social Security Disability lawyer can provide assistance in helping you to determine if you qualify for presumptive SSI benefits and can assist you in moving forward with the process of applying for benefits so you can begin to obtain the income necessary to support yourself. Call an attorney today to get started as soon as possible.

About the Author
Ms. Shvarts is the managing attorney for Disability Advocates Group. She opened Disability Advocates Group to assist individuals who became disabled and unable to work to obtain the benefits they need and deserve.  Ms. Shvarts and the rest of the team at Disability Advocates Group are dedicated to assisting individuals obtain Social Security Disability Benefits (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits.