Social Security Disability Insurance benefits are available for a variety of physical and mental disorders. For SSDI purposes, the most important factor in any disabling disorder is that it keeps a Portland resident from engaging in any gainful employment.
One recent SSDI case involves a Vietnam veteran who suffers from post traumatic stress disorder, or PTSD. The veteran’s PTSD is so severe that he has flashbacks and often thinks that he is back at war. Anything can trigger the flashbacks for the veteran including smells, lights, and rainstorms.
The veteran filed for SSDI claiming that his PTSD made him unemployable. During rainstorms the man sits in the garage with a gun insisting that people are out to get him. In fact, even his wife refuses to sleep in the same bed with him because she awoke one night and found the man asleep with his hands on her throat, showing the potentially violent consequences of these flashbacks.
The consequences of these flashbacks became disabling in 1995 according to the veteran. Unfortunately the veteran did not seek medical attention until 2003 so there was no evidence to support the veteran’s disability onset date. In our last post we discussed the importance of medical documentation in a SSDI case. Medical documentation is key to providing the SSA with a strong case for benefits. An experienced SSDI attorney can help an applicant collect the proper documentation which can make the necessity of appealing an adverse determination less likely.
In our next post we will discuss further details of the veteran’s case.
Source: US Court of Appeals 7th Cir., “Guranovich v. Astrue,” Feb. 14, 2012