Is PTSD covered by SSDI?

Mental trauma and stress that renders a person unable to work may qualify them to receive Social Security Disability payments.

People in Minnesota who have worked and paid into the Social Security system may earn the right to claim Social Security Disability Insurance if they are ever disabled to the point where they cannot work. These payments are available for eligible claimants who are disabled by impairments that will result in death or are expected to last at least one year.

According to the Social Security Administration, there are multiple types of mental disabilities that may qualify someone for SSDI benefits. These include obsessive-compulsive disorder, bipolar disorder, autism spectrum disorder, schizophrenia and more. The experience of severe mental trauma or stresses may also allow someone to seek and receive these benefits.

Qualifying for mental SSDI benefits

Many things will be evaluated before an application for SSDI is approved for mental trauma. From a medical perspective, a patient may need to be able to prove that not only were they exposed to threatened or real violence, serious injury or death but also that they now have mood disturbances related to that exposure.

Patients may need to show that their experiences force them to avoid certain situations or places as they are reminders of the events and that they cannot escape reliving the experience such as in nightmares or flashbacks. Overexaggerated responses may also be part of the evaluation.

Along with the identification of these elements, officials will review how well a person may be able to work with others, concentrate, adapt in a work situation and comprehend, remember and use information. If a deficiency in one of these areas is severe or a deficiency in two of these areas is notable enough, the claim may be allowed to proceed.

Another way a person may be eligible for SSDI based upon serious mental trauma such as post-traumatic stress disorder is if the condition has been evident for at least 24 months despite therapy or treatment that has been unable to improve the situation or condition significantly enough to let him or her work.

SSDI and federal budget cuts

Think Progress reported that President Trump's proposed budget seeks to cut more than $70 billion from Social Security Administration programs in the coming decade. This includes reductions in the funding for SSDI.

It is unclear at this point whether and how such budget cuts will impact the everyday person, but they may well highlight the need for legal help when seeking these benefits.

People with serious mental challenges that prevent them from working should contact an attorney in Minnesota to get assistance with filing a claim for Social Security Disability.