Lupus and Social Security Benefits

Jul 20, 2013 by

Systematic lupus erthymatosus, usually known as just lupus, is a disease of the immune system that causes it to attack the body’s own tissues and organs. Although it can affect many major organs, such as the brain, heart, and lungs, lupus can easily be mistaken for other diseases due to similarities in symptoms. However, in many cases, a characteristic rash that WebMD compares to the wings of a butterfly develops across the face.

Severe lupus can be debilitating and prevent a person from being able to work, qualifying these people for Social Security benefits. More specifically, to qualify for benefits due to lupus, the disease must, as described by

  • Affect at least two body systems or organs
  • Cause at least two of these symptoms: frequent exhaustion, fever, malaise, or involuntary weight loss
  • OR, the repeating symptoms of lupus must cause two of the aforementioned symptoms, resulting in: limitations of activities of daily living, limitations in maintaining social functioning, limitation in completing tasks in a timely manner, or limitations in ability to function “independently, appropriately, and effectively”

There are a few other conditions based on the situation, but these are the basic requirements. A candidate can apply for benefits in several ways, including completing an online application, scheduling an office appointment, finding Social Security filing assistance, or by making a walk-in visit to a nearby Social Security office.

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