Talking About Bankruptcy Services

Talking About Bankruptcy Services

Getting Disability Benefits When You Have Depression

by Carlos Gomez

Social security disability benefits can be difficult to qualify for, especially for those who have "hidden" disabilities—those problems that aren't as obvious as a wheelchair or a missing limb. One common disabling condition is depression. Depression can have several manifestations, but if it begins to affect your ability to work or to care for yourself and your family, you could qualify for public assistance.

Proving Disability

Since depression is so varied in expression and since it is a more common problem, it can be hard to prove that your depression is serious enough that you need help from the state. There are certain stigmas that surround depression disorders as well, like the idea that it is all in someone's mind or that they could be better if they simply chose to be happy. These stigmas, along with the difficult burden or proof, make acceptance for depression cases for disability more challenging.

In order to show that your condition is serious, it's necessary to:

  • have proof of diagnosis. Self-treatment will not be effective for a disability claim. Have a signed notice from your doctor and a mental health professional confirming that your depression is a true and lasting disorder. It's best if you have proof of a recognized mood disorder: manic depression, major depressive disorder, or dysthymia. If you have not been able to see the doctor for a diagnosis, show your willingness to have full assessment done by requesting one from the Social Security Administration as part of your application. 
  • show that you have sought treatment, but that the treatment is either not effective all of the time or that the treatment will require you to spend a good deal of time not working. For example, if you struggle with bipolar disorder—a form of depression—you will have medication to help balance your moods. But, in periods of mania or in depressive states, the medication may not be enough to help you stay fully functional. On the flip side, if you consistently feel suicidal, your medicines might help to stabilize your thoughts, but they may leave you terribly tired or unable to fully concentrate. 
  • show that the depression lasts a long time. Typically, you will need a history of depression that has previously affected your ability to work well or hold a steady job.

To help with your case, you should hire a lawyer who can give you direction on proving on paper and in person that you are in need of public assistance. Your disability claim may include a hearing where you are questioned by a judge or state employee about your disability. They will want to know specific details like:

  • how depression affects your daily activities. To prepare, consider keeping a journal over a period of several weeks that records each day in detail. Your journal should reflect the symptoms of your condition, including having days that seem perfectly fine combined with days where you were unable to function or even get out of bed.
  • your treatment plan. Having a treatment plan in place is important. Serious depression requires mental and physical health intervention. If you are not receiving treatment, those reviewing your case may assume that if your depression is not serious enough for treatment, it is also not serious enough to require public benefits.
  • how your work life is specifically affected. Does your depression, for instance, make it challenging to greet people or get to meetings on time? Are you able to concentrate on complex tasks or receive criticism from peers? Document specific instances from your work life that show how depression makes completing your job more challenging.

It can be difficult to prove depression when applying for disability benefits. Talk to a lawyer from a company like about your specific case for more information on how you can make a believable claim.


About Me

Talking About Bankruptcy Services

Hi there, I am Shirley Lorenzo. Without adequate car insurance, every accident has the risk of leading to bankruptcy. Car accident damage caused by an under-insured individual can result in the inability to even own a vehicle until it's paid. Thankfully, bankruptcy attorneys can help discharge those debts and restore finances to a positive status. Bankruptcy requires the use of an attorney to navigate the complicated set of laws governing the process. I will use this site to talk about the paperwork, procedures and meetings required while pursuing bankruptcy. I will also share my knowledge about common bankruptcy court procedures used to discharge debts. Thanks for visiting my site.