Alan E. DeWoskin, P.C.
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Substance abuse and Social Security disability

Drug and alcohol addiction has a firm grip on many Missourians. Many of these individuals, through strength a strong support system, are able to beat their addiction and find a life of sobriety. Yet, the effects of extensive drug and alcohol abuse can leave an individual forever changed and, in some instances, unable to work. Those who find themselves in this situation may be wondering if they can qualify for Social Security disability benefits.

In a roundabout way, they may be able to obtain much needed disability benefits. According to the Social Security Administration, those who suffer changes in their behavior or physical abilities due to the regular use of substances that have an effect on the nervous system may qualify. However, a disabled individual must specify what type of disability they suffer and the severity must meet the requirements of that disability. For example, if substance addiction caused one to develop liver damage, then the requirements for disability based on liver damage must be met, just as those who suffer liver damage not caused by substance addiction would have to.

Therefore, those who have been rendered disabled because of their substance addiction need to be familiar with the federal requirements that must be met to qualify for benefits. They will also need to be able to provide evidence of the disability, which may be satisfied by submitting medical documentation.

Though it may sound easy enough, recovering SSD benefits can actually be quite challenging. Initial claims are often denied, and the appeals process can be difficult. However, with a strong and skilled attorney by one's side, he or she may stand a better chance and will know what needs to be done to increase their chances of finding financial stability in a time of disability.

Source: Social Security Administration, "12.00 Mental Disorders - Adult," accessed on Jan. 10, 2016

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

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Phone: 314-925-0242
Fax: 314-727-5297
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