Almost everyone will suffer from a fracture at some point in their life. In most cases, these injuries heal in a relatively short matter of time. For some individuals, however, a fracture of an upper extremity can take longer than a year to heal and can severely hinder an individual's ability to maintain full-time work activity. The following information will help you understand how the SSA reviews disability claims based on a fracture of an upper extremity and how you can increase your chances of winning your disability case.
Fracture of an Upper Extremity Condition and Symptoms
When a fracture of an upper extremity occurs, the affected bone becomes cracked or broken. This may result in very limited movement and intense pain. Depending on the severity of the injury, surgery may be required. The combined effects of the injury, surgery and pain medications can make it impossible for the injured individual to maintain full-time employment.
While most fractures do not take a year or more to heal, there are cases in which it can take twelve months or more to heal a fracture of an upper extremity. Some individuals do not heal as quickly as others and some injuries are more severe and may require more than one surgery to correct the injury. If it takes more than twelve months to heal a fracture of an upper extremity and the injury prevents a person from performing any gainful work activity during this time, the individual may be entitled to Social Security Disability benefits.
Filing for Social Security Disability with a Fracture of an Upper Extremity
Many people do not consider filing Social Security Disability claims for fractures because they assume that fractures are not covered by Social Security Disability Insurance, which is entirely untrue. Fractures of an upper extremity are actually included in the Social Security Administration's published listings for both children and adults. There are, however, certain criteria that must be met in order to qualify for Social Security Disability benefits based on such an injury.
To qualify for Social Security Disability benefits based on a fracture of an upper extremity, you must be able to prove that your fracture prevents you from working and that the injury is not expected to heal for twelve months or more. The fracture must also be under the care of a treating surgeon with the intent of restoring the arm and eliminating the disability.
In order to prove your eligibility for Social Security Disability benefits, you will need to provide a complete copy of your medical records along with your Social Security Disability application. These records should include a history of your x-rays (including current x-rays), a history of your surgeries, and a written statement from your treating physicians stating that the injury is expected to last at least twelve months.
Fracture of an Upper Extremity and Your Social Security Disability Case
In many cases an initial claim for Social Security Disability benefits based on a fracture of an upper extremity will be denied by the Social Security Administration. This is largely due to the fact that it can be difficult to prove that a fracture will take longer than twelve months to heal and it may be difficult to prove that your injury completely prevents you from performing any type of work activity.
If your initial application for Social Security Disability benefits is denied, do not be discouraged. Nearly 70 percent of all initial claims are rejected by the Social Security Administration. If this happens, you will need to pursue the disability appeal process and will likely need to appear before an administrative law judge.
If you do need to pursue a disability appeal, you should consider retaining the services of a qualified Social Security Disability lawyer. These professionals understand the disability laws and how they pertain to your specific disability case. They will also help you gather the medical evidence needed to prove your case to the Social Security Administration.
Many people wonder if it is worth pursuing a disability appeal for a fracture to an upper extremity due to the length of time these appeals take to complete. Even if it takes you more than two years to win your appeal, and your fracture has been healed six months before the appeal has ended, you will still be entitled to back pay from the Social Security Administration if your case is won. Because of this, it is definitely in your best interest to retain the services of a qualified professional and go after the Social Security Disability benefits that you may be rightfully entitled to.
To learn more about filing for SSD benefits due to a fracture of an upper extremity or to learn more about working with a Social Security Disability attorney or advocate, click here for a free evaluation of your Social Security Disability case.