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Social Security Disability and Type I or Type II Diabetes

There are quite a large number of people who apply for disability benefits due to complications that arise as a result of diabetes. If the diabetes is too severe, it could cause organ damage or medical conditions that limit physical ability. People with diabetes are already classified as people with a disability regardless of the type they suffer from.

Individuals who have uncontrolled cases of diabetes and have spent a period of at least 12 months without working due to the condition are eligible for social security benefits. To qualify for the benefits, it must be established that the level of disease damage is such that the applicant has been rendered incapable of engaging in meaningful work. Sometimes the effects of diabetes become worse because an individual deliberately ignores their doctor’s advice. In such cases, the applicant is not eligible for disability benefit and if they file an application, it would be rejected.

Diabetes and Requirement for Social Security Disability

The Social Security Administration (SSA) has a set of requirements which it uses to assess the severity of illness before it can make approvals for cases brought before them. Unfortunately, diabetes as a condition does not fall under any disability listing and applicants cannot be granted disability on its basis. Diabetes must have caused other complications that fall under other disability listings. If this happens to be the case, approval is automatic even before a residual functional capacity has been determined.

Diabetes can lead to blurred or poor vision, kidney failure requiring dialysis, nerve damage in the limbs, coronary artery disease, poor immunity function of the body against bacterial and skin infections, and amputation. All these resultant conditions are listed under various disabilities listings because by the time there is a secondary condition owing to diabetes, an applicant is severely ill and incapacitated.

Diabetes does not always cause secondary illness but it can be paired by another condition that does not in itself fall under any specific disability listing.

In such a case, the SSA must consider the effects that this combination has on an individual. While there may not be a listing for a combination of this nature, a residual function capability (RFC) analysis will determine the approval and level of benefit.

The RFC analysis will establish how much an individual can do despite their illness. This analysis is backed by a doctor’s report of examination as well as medical history.