Evaluating Portlanders’ visual disorders under Social Security Disability

A Portland resident with a visual disorder suffers from an irregularity in the function of the brain, optic nerve, optic tracts or eyes that causes some loss of visual faculty. As visual disorders can limit a Portland resident’s ability to perform a job, they can qualify the Portland resident for Social Security disability if the right qualifications are met. The general term used to refer to a visual disorder of this nature is statutory blindness.

Statutory blindness is defined in the Social Security Act as visual acuity of 20/200 less with the use of correction. Statutory blindness is determined by the Portland resident’s better eye and always accounts for their best-corrected visual acuity. Additionally, an eye that has a visual angle of 20 degrees or less is considered to qualify as statutory blindness.

To establish statutory blindness, the Social Security Administration must find that a Portland resident’s visual acuity meet the criteria detailed in the Social Security act. In some cases, the cause of one’s blindness must be documented as well. To check for statutory blindness, the SSA uses data from visual acuity testing that was administered using Snellen methodology or another similar testing methodology.

In some cases, a Portland resident may not meet the criteria for statutory blindness as listed in the Social Security Act. For instance, a Portland resident with blepharospasm, a movement disorder that causes one’s eyes to repeatedly close involuntarily, may not have a low enough visual acuity to be considered statutorily blind. If therapy for such a condition is not successful, the SSA will consider how the condition’s effects might affect long-term visual function to determine if the individual in question qualifies for disability benefits.

Source: Social Security Online, “Disability Evaluation Under Social Security – 2.00 SPECIAL SENSES AND SPEECH – Adult.”

By |2019-02-08T20:25:41+00:00July 4th, 2011|Social Security Disability|0 Comments
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