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Does age matter when applying for disability benefits?

When determining whether to award an individual in Philadelphia Social Security disability benefits, the Social Security Administration will consider whether an individual can perform another type of work, and a person's age may factor into this decision. For example, a younger disabled worker may not be able to return to the person's former employment, but the person may be able to do another type of work, particularly if that work is less demanding.

However, what about older workers who have become established in their careers for many years who find themselves unable to continue in those careers due to a disability? The Social Security Administration may take the applicant's years of experience into account and determine whether the skills they have cultivated can be applicable to a different profession that is within the confines of the applicant's abilities.

The Social Security Administration will also examine an applicant's medical records when determining whether to award benefits. They will look to see what the applicant's physical and mental abilities are. Can the applicant, sit, stand or lift? Is the applicant able to pay attention to the task at hand? If the applicant cannot return to his or her former profession, is there a less demanding field he or she can enter? An applicant's medical records can serve as evidence of his or her ability to work to the level of "substantial gainful activity."

In the end, each applicant's health and situation are unique. Any worker, old or young, whose disability prevents the person from working may benefit from discussing the person's situation with an attorney. For example, the professionals at The Disability Law Office of Jeffrey S. Lichtman, LLC, may be able to educate individuals in Philadelphia further about the connection between their age and their ability to apply for Social Security disability benefits. The firm's disability website may be a good starting point for individuals seeking benefits.

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Pennsylvania Bar Association Philadelphia Bar Co-Chair SSD Committee Philadelphia Bar Co-Chair SSD Committee