woman with a seizure disorder after a head injury having an EEG

Can I Get Disability Benefits for My Epilepsy?

Epilepsy is a chronic seizure condition that can be very difficult to live and work with. If you suffer from epilepsy, your condition may seriously interfere with your ability to work and support yourself and your loved ones. It is for this reason that many people living with epilepsy choose to apply for Social Security disability.

If you’re considering applying for disability benefits for your epilepsy, it’s important to learn about the ways your condition might qualify and certain obstacles that can keep you from receiving your payment. Read about disability benefits for epilepsy and find out how applying is easier and more successful with help from a knowledgeable attorney.

Types of Epilepsy

Contrary to what you might believe, epilepsy is a fairly broad condition, and can come with different symptoms and triggers. For example, some people who suffer epilepsy will experience convulsions, while others may experience staring spells or reductions in their awareness.

The most common forms of epilepsy include tonic-clonic (grand mal) seizures, partial or focal seizures, complex-partial seizures and absence seizures. Identifying the specific type of epilepsy that you suffer from will be your first step in apply for your needed disability benefits.

When Can I Get Disability Benefits for Epilepsy?

Adults who suffer from some form of epilepsy may be eligible for either Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI). The disability benefits that you apply for will be based on whether or not you’ve ever worked and paid into the Social Security system.

In Social Security’s disability listing—commonly called the Blue Book—there are two different epilepsy conditions that can be eligible for benefits.

The first qualifying type of disability is tonic-clonic seizures. If you experience tonic-clonic seizure, you will need to suffer a seizure at least one time every four months and the seizure must affect either your motor functioning, your cognitive abilities or your ability to interact with other people.

The other qualifying seizure condition is known as dyscognitive seizures. With dyscognitive seizures, you will need to suffer an episode at least once every other week for a period that must be at least three months. To qualify for benefits, your dyscognitive seizures need to negatively affect your ability to understand and communicate, your emotional control, your concentration and your ability to perform physical activities.

Collecting Medical Evidence

One of the keys to winning your disability benefits for epilepsy will be to provide an ample amount of medical evidence and to have a residual functional capacity (RFC) that is low enough to prevent you from working.

While gathering the medical evidence to support your disability claim, there are a few pieces of information you need to prioritize. To prove your case, you’ll need a confirmed epilepsy diagnosis, neurological test results, an in-depth description from your doctor about your diagnosis and symptoms, and evidence that you cooperate with anti-seizure treatments.

During your RFC examination, the primary factor that will be determined is to what degree your epilepsy interferes with your day to day life. For example, if your seizures are frequent and severe enough to prevent you from meaningful work, your RFC will determine if there’s some other sort of work you could do or whether your epilepsy precludes any work.

Consult an Attorney

Because applying for disability benefits for epilepsy can be difficult, you may need help from an experienced attorney, which is why you need to work with the Law Offices of Dr. Bill LaTour.

Our compassionated, knowledgeable attorneys can discuss your condition and your options for receiving benefits, and will fight for your best interests. Schedule a consultation with us today.

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