The Applying for Disability with Heart Failure Over 50

The medical term heart failure receives plenty of publicity, but the term is often misunderstood by the public. Heart failure is not about the heart completely failing; it is about the heart not pumping blood as well as it should pump blood.

Without a healthy heart, the body does not receive the oxygen-rich blood it needs to function at an optimal level. The result is a list of symptoms that make it difficult to exert energy. This means keeping a job the requires physical labor is difficult to do.

Even daily activities such as walking to your car and shopping for groceries can become Herculean tasks.
If you suffer from heart failure, you should know that you might be eligible for Social Security disability benefits.

Heart Failure and SSA Grid Rules

The Social Security Administration (SSA) refers to a grid of factors to examine eligibility for disability benefits. Older workers especially benefit from SSA using the grid to determine the approval or denial of Social Security.

Grid rules accept the reality that as you turn 50 years old, employers are less likely to hire you for an entry-level job and your job skills do not transfer as well to other lines of work. Even if you can hold down a job, the SSA might refer to the grid rules and conclude that you are disabled. Grid rules factor in age, education level, set of job skills, and the amount of manual labor you can perform.

What Kind of Work Can I Do with Heart Failure?

If you have received a diagnosis of heart failure, your doctor might conclude that you are no longer capable of holding down a job that requires a considerable amount of physical exertion.

The SSA classifies physical labor into three categories: Light, medium, and heavy. Depending on the seriousness of your symptoms, a heart failure diagnosis can relegate you to office work and in some cases, keep you out of the workplace altogether.

This means working from home is the kind of work you can do with heart failure. Remote positions include accounting, web design, and computer programming.

Tips on Applying for Disability with Heart Failure

Meeting the Criteria Established by the Blue Book

The SSA publishes a medical guide called the Blue Book that lists every qualifying medical condition for Social Security disability benefits. Heart failure falls under Section 4.00 of the SSA medical guide, but you have to have chronic heart failure to be eligible for financial assistance.

According to the SSA, chronic heart failure develops when the heart experiences systolic failure that reduces the ability of the heart to pump blood to 30 percent of its capacity.

The result of the 30 percent litmus test for heart failure is that you cannot complete any exercise tests without placing your health in serious jeopardy. You might also qualify for disability if you went through three different congestive heart failure episodes over the past year.

Be prepared when you file a disability claim by knowing how to qualify for benefits with heart failure.

Speak with a Social Security Attorney

Regardless of age, you improve your chances of receiving approval for disability benefits if you work with a Social Security lawyer. Your attorney will help you submit a persuasive claim, as well as monitor your claim to ensure it moves through the SSA processing system in a timely manner.

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