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Obesity is one of the most common diseases in the United States, with one-third of all adults considered obese. And while you may assume that obesity is a mostly self-inflicted disease and therefore doesn’t qualify for Social Security Disability benefits, you actually can receive benefits.
Horn & Kelley P.C. Attorneys at Law specializes in filing Social Security Disability claims for Chicagoland and NWI residents, and we can help you too.
When Is Obesity a Disability?
Obesity is not usually considered a disability. Obesity is a disease, and there are many factors that contribute to its development. A person is considered obese when their Body Mass Index (the ratio of their weight and height) is greater than 30 percent.
It is a common misconception that obesity can be cured with simple diet and exercise. Often, other factors contribute to whether a person is obese, such as disordered eating, genetics, and hormone deficiencies and other physical issues that keep a person from being active.
Obesity crosses the line between disease and disability when it affects a person’s life. For example, morbid obesity can contribute to a lack of physical ability that makes it difficult or impossible for a person to hold down a job. Obesity can also be a primary cause of other diseases and disabilities, such as heart disease, Type II diabetes, and cancers. Mental health may also be a factor
In fact, obese employees are more likely to be injured on the job, and they miss nearly two weeks more work than employees with a healthy body weight. When you combine a higher risk for injury with higher overall medical costs, you can see why obesity can be considered a disability for some.
If your obesity is causing you to be unable to work or has contributed to a workplace injury, you may qualify for Social Security Disability benefits.
How Do I Qualify?
Simply being obese is not grounds for a Social Security Disability claim. You must be able to prove that your obesity causes problems equal to a qualifying disability in the Social Security blue book. For example, if obesity causes you joint problems, you may qualify for SSD under section 1.02, Major dysfunction of a joint(s).
Other disabilities that are caused by obesity may be covered by Social Security Disability as well, such as cardiovascular diseases, or mental health disorders.
If you think that your obesity counts as a disability and qualifies for Social Security Disability benefits, contact Horn & Kelley P.C. Attorneys at Law today. We can go over your ailments and determine whether you will qualify for Social Security Disability benefits, and then we can assist you through the filing process.
If you’re looking for Social Security Disability benefits in the Chicagoland or NW Indiana area, you’re in the right place. You can reach us by phone at 888-921-5297 or by filling out our online contact form.