Most people think of Alzheimer’s as a disease that only affects the elderly, but early-onset Alzheimer’s can develop in people who are still as young as their late 40s. If you’re a caregiver to someone that has Alzheimer’s and can’t work anymore you can help them file a claim for Social Security disability benefits. The money from disability benefits can be used to help pay for their living expenses and care that isn’t covered by medical insurance. If your loved one’s Alzheimer’s is progressing, you can help them fill out and file a claim for disability benefits.
How A Caregiver Can Help
Caregivers are legally allowed to fill out documents and access medical records for people who are longer able to take care of themselves because of Alzheimer’s, but it helps if you have a power of attorney that authorizes you to do so. If possible, you should try to get power of attorney for your loved one. In order to help your loved one get disability benefits you can:
Get Their Medical Records
Medical documentation is required in order to prove that your loved one meets the conditions that are listed in the Social Security Administration’s Blue Book. In order to be approved for disability benefits your loved one needs to provide medical proof that they have significantly declined in at least one of these areas:
· learning and remembering (short-term memory in particular)
· using language (inability to recall words, misuse of words)
· paying attention to tasks or listening to others
· planning and judgment
· social cognition (ability to know proper social behavior in differing circumstances), or
· physical coordination.
And that they have limited ability to function in at least one of these areas:
· understanding, remembering, or using information (ability to understand instructions, learn new things, apply new knowledge to tasks)
· concentrating on tasks and completing tasks at a reasonable speed
· adapting or managing oneself (making plans for oneself independently of others; being aware of normal hazards and taking appropriate precautions, having practical personal skills), and
· interacting with others (with socially acceptable behavior).
You can help them by gathering and organizing their medical records to prove that they meet these criteria. You may need to make phone calls or actually go to the doctor or hospital where they are being treated to get copies of things like their diagnosis, PET scans, MRIs, blood tests, cognitive tests, and other medical evidence. The more evidence you can submit for them the stronger their case will be and the more likely they are to be awarded benefits.
How to Submit the Claim For Disability Benefits
Due to COVID-19 restrictions, the SSA has suspended in-office appointments, so you cannot go to your local SSA office to fill out your loved one’s application. You can apply directly online at the SSA’s website, which you can start and stop anytime. You are allowed to prepare the claim form for your loved one who is no longer capable of doing it themselves. If you need help understanding the forms, or if you have questions about how to fill it out properly, you can contact the SSA toll-free at 1-800-772-1213. Make sure to have all of your loved one’s medical documentation and paperwork in order before starting the application. After you submit the claim online, it usually takes the SSA between 3 to 5 months to get back to you with a decision. You are able to appeal the SSA’s decision if the initial application is denied. After being approved for disability benefits with Alzheimer’s, you can focus on what’s most important: your loved one’s health.
Resources Found Via:
This article was written by the Outreach Team at Disability Benefits Help. They provide information about disability benefits and the application process. To learn more, please visit their website at http://www.disability-benefits-help.org/ or by emailing them at firstname.lastname@example.org.