Can You Receive Disability Benefits For Fibromyalgia?

January 11th, 2021 Social Security Disability
Picture of a woman sitting at a desk with neck and back pain

Fibromyalgia is a painful musculoskeletal disorder that affects over 5 million Americans. This disorder affects brain signals’ processing, resulting in heightened pain, issues with sleep, mood, memory, and fatigue. Like many other conditions, Fibromyalgia is not yet fully understood by the medical community, and medical professionals are still uncertain of the exact cause of Fibromyalgia. Suppose you are disabled and can no longer work because of Fibromyalgia. In that case, you may be entitled to Social Security Disability benefits.

Does the SSA Cover Fibromyalgia? 

Fibromyalgia is not explicitly mentioned in the Social Security Administration’s (SSA) “Blue Book” listing of disabling conditions. However, as long as you meet the Social Security Administration’s criteria, it is possible to be approved for Social Security Disability benefits with Fibromyalgia.

To be eligible for SSD benefits, you must:

  • Have adequate work history
  • Suffer from a disability (injury or illness) that is unlikely to improve within a year
  • Be unable to work for an extended time

SSR 12-2P and the Evaluation of Fibromyalgia Claims

This Social Security Ruling (SSR) created a guide on developing evidence to establish that someone has a medically diagnosed case of Fibromyalgia. SSSR 12-2p details how the SSA evaluates Fibromyalgia in disability claims and disability reviews under titles II and XVI of the Social Security Act. You can read SSR 12-2p for more information on how SSA evaluates Fibromyalgia.

This SSA ruling has helped reduce the number of fibromyalgia claimants denied at the initial application stage and has increased the number of people living with Fibromyalgia who file an appeal and ultimately are awarded disability benefits.

Since Fibromyalgia can be complicated, it is advised to partner with with a Social Security disability advocate who understands the applicable Social Security Rulings to determine the best way to present your case.

Documentation is Key

Detailed documentation can be the difference between getting your application approved or denied. Keep a fibromyalgia diary. This will help you track all the days you experience pain and how it interferes with your daily routine. Take into account and note symptoms such as migraine attacks, chronic exhaustion and more.

They may ask your doctor to provide information about the extent and duration of your disability, including how well they believe you can function, what treatments you’ve tried and whether they were helpful, and how long the doctor expects your ability to work to be limited. This will help examiners assess the credibility of your complaints.

 

What Do You Need to File for SSD Benefits

Before you file, make sure you have:

  • A confirmed diagnosis from a doctor or rheumatologist
  • Dates of medical visits related to your disability
  • Contact information of your treating doctors, caseworkers, or hospital
  • Relevant medical records, which may include your medications, lab test results, or psychologist visits
  • A Residual Functional Capacity (RFC) assessment provided by your doctor
  • A list of your previous jobs

The Michigan Social Security Attorneys on Your Side

Many first time applicants for Social Security disability benefits who apply based on Fibromyalgia get denied. Since disability lawyers are knowledgeable about the Social Security ruling on Fibromyalgia (SSR 12-2p), they’ll know whether or not you qualify for benefits.

This is why more so than in other cases, hiring a lawyer to appeal a denial of benefits for Fibromyalgia is incredibly beneficial. Their knowledge can help find errors made by the claims examiner or judge in the disability determination and use them to your advantage.

From the initial application to representing you at a disability hearing, our compassionate team strives for excellence every step of the way. Call us for a free, no-obligation consultation at 800-701-5524 today. The consultation is free, and there is no fee until we win. Our SSD attorneys in Warren, MI have the experience you need to get the results you want.

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I will never forget you and the hard work you did to secure my Social Security Disability benefits. Thank you!

- Christine C.