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Obtaining Social Security Benefits for ALS

Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease in the United States, is a neuromuscular disease that affects the parts of the nervous system that control voluntary muscle movement. It is a type of motor neuron disorder that rapidly attacks the nerve cells responsible for controlling voluntary muscles. With ALS, motor neurons are gradually lost, causing the muscles they control to become weak and eventually nonfunctional. If that occurs, it can ultimately lead to disability and sometimes even death. As such condition are devastating to daily life, obtaining your maximum benefits with the help of a Baltimore ALS disability lawyer is vital to your quality of life. 

The Effects of ALS on the Body 

ALS commonly strikes individuals in their late 50’s or later, although it can occur earlier in some situations.  In the United States, between 1 to 3 new cases of ALS are diagnosed per 100,000 people each year. Below are some common symptoms (although not an exclusive list) that an individual may experience if they have ALS:

  • Muscle twitches and cramps
  • Incomplete eye closure and drooling
  • Inappropriate laughing, crying, or yawning
  • Alterations in thinking or uncharacteristic behavior changes
  • Constipation 
  • Impairment of the stomach,
  • Bloating 
  • Urinary urgency

Does An ALS Diagnosis Qualify for SSD Benefits?

Have you been diagnosed with ALS? If so, you may be eligible for Social Security Disability benefits. The federal government through the Social Security Administration (SSA) administers the Social Security Disability Income (SSDI) program which enables individuals to receive financial assistance if they suffer from a qualifying disability and have earned enough work credits (and paid enough in taxes to the Social Security program) to be considered eligible for benefits.  

The SSA uses their own medical guide to evaluate disability conditions known as the Blue Book.  The Blue Book includes a specific listing (11.10) for ALS.  In this listing, the SSA has established certain criteria which, if met by an applicant with ALS, automatically makes them eligible for SSD benefits.  You will need to submit sufficient medical documentation of your ALS diagnosis to the SSA, which typically may require laboratory testing to establish the diagnosis.  Electrophysiological studies, such as an electromyography (EMG), may support your diagnosis of ALS.  

Because the disability application process can be complicated and requires you to submit accurate and complete paperwork, as well as medical records, you should speak with an experienced Baltimore ALS attorney who can help you with the application process.  An experienced disability attorney at the Law Office of Emmett B. Irwin can help you with your ALS disability case every step of the way. Our office will help take the stress off of you so you can focus on your health. 

Next Steps: Contact a Baltimore ALS Law Firm Today for a Free Case Evaluation

Whether you have yet to apply for benefits or have been denied benefits, the SSDI process can be overwhelming for most people. Our experienced Baltimore SSD attorney can help you get the benefits you deserve so that you can move forward with your life after receiving your diagnosis. Are you unable to work because of your ALS condition?  If so, contact a Baltimore ALS disability benefits attorney  at the Law Office of Emmett B. Irwin today for a free consultation. We work with clients throughout Maryland and surrounding states.