Crohn’s Disease can be a very serious intestinal condition, requiring significant flexibility in the workplace and outside of it to attend doctor and treatment appointments. The SSA does recognize Crohn’s as a potential disability, provided applicants meet certain requirements.
Disability Approval for Crohn’s Disease
The SSA has a multi-step evaluation process. First, the SSA will determine whether the applicant is working at the Substantial Gainful Activity (SGA) level; in 2021, that level was $1,310 gross per month. Applicants earning more than $1,310 gross per month will most likely be denied. (This standard will increase to $1350 in 2022.)
The SSA must also determine whether the applicant’s Crohn’s Disease is expected to last at least a year (typically satisfied as Crohn’s is a lifelong condition). The applicant’s condition must also be deemed “severe” – materially impacting one’s ability to do basic work activities.
Next, the SSA will see if the applicant’s condition meets or equals one of the conditions outlined in the SSA’s Listing of Impairments. The SSA does include Crohn’s Disease as a qualifying condition under listing 5.06, Inflammatory Bowel Disease. If the SSA finds conclusive medical evidence in the applicant’s medical record that demonstrates his/her Crohn’s meets the criteria of listing 5.06, the SSA will automatically approve the disability claim.
You can learn more about the specific criteria and listing here.
Qualifying Without Meeting an SSA Listing
If an applicant can’t meet the SSA Listing of Impairments but is too sick to work full-time, there are still options for disability approval. The SSA will look at his/her documented symptoms to determine a potential working level. The SSA will then evaluate whether the applicant can do past work. If the SSA believes the applicant can do his/her past work, the claim will be denied.
If the SSA believes the applicant cannot do past work, it will next consider the ability to perform other jobs. If an applicant cannot perform other work on a full-time basis they will be considered to be disabled. Crohn’s Disease can also cause significant mental issues like anxiety and depression, so it may be worth getting an evaluation from a mental health professional as well.
If you or a loved one has Crohn’s, know that there are options available. Applicants in Eugene and Albany trust the team at Drew L. Johnson, P.C. to help make their applications competitive and accurate. Call (541) 434-6466 to learn more and schedule a free consultation.