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Hearing loss and Social Security disability

Those Missourians who suffer from a debilitating injury, illness, or medical condition may be relieved to know that they may qualify for government assistance. Social Security disability, in particular, may provide compensation to those who are rendered unable to work on account of their condition. Yet, in order to obtain these benefits a claimant must meet government requirements. It is therefore crucial that those considering filing for disability benefits fully understand whether they qualify under the requirements.

This week we will briefly discuss hearing loss as it relates to Social Security disability. According to the Social Security Administration, there are two categories under which an individual may qualify. First, there are those who do not have a cochlear implant. These individuals may qualify for benefits if they are tested and found to have an average air conduction hearing threshold that is at a level of 90 decibels or more, and they also have an average bone conduction hearing threshold that is 60 decibels or greater in their better ear. Those with an implant may also qualify if their word recognition score is less than 40 percent in their better ear.

Those who do have a cochlear implant might be able to recover benefits if they are considered to have a disability for a year after the implant was incorporated, or if after that one year period the claimant has a word recognition score that is 60 percent or less. It is worth noting that these tests must be conducted according to government standards.

Those with hearing loss, and others with disabling medical conditions, may find it difficult to navigate the Social Security disability system. Fortunately, though, these individuals can choose to seek out legal assistance, which may make the process much easier.

Source: Social Security Administration, "2.00 Special Senses and Speech - Adult," accessed on Nov. 8, 2015

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Alan E. DeWoskin, P.C.
225 South Meramec Avenue, Suite 426
St. Louis, MO 63105

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