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WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW ABOUT SOCIAL SECURITY DISABILITY INSURANCE INCOME / SSDI
Specific criteria must be met to qualify for Social Security Disability Insurance Income (SSDI). The Congress of the United States has defined disability, for purposes of entitlement to disabled worker's benefits as the inability to engage in any substantial gainful activity by reason of any medically determinable physical or mental impairment which can be expected to result in death or which has lasted or can be expected to last for a continuous period of not less than 12 months.
A person must NOT only be unable to do his or her previous work but cannot engage in any other kind of substantial gainful work which exists in the national economy, considering the persons:
It is immaterial whether such work exists in the immediate area, or whether a specific job vacancy exists, or whether the worker would be hired if he or she applied for work.
WHAT IS RESIDUAL FUNCTIONAL CAPACITY?
Residual Functional Capacity (RFC) is the total of what one is left capable of doing after impairments have taken their toll. Social Security identifies the level of work capability in categories of:
Sedentary work is defined as "involving lifting no more than 10 pounds at a time and occasionally lifting and carrying articles like, docket files, ledgers, and small tools". Although sitting is primarily involved in a sedentary job, walking and standing should be required only occasionally. Standing and walking should total no more than 2 hours per 8 hour workday, while sitting would total about 6 hours per 8 hour workday. Most unskilled sedentary jobs demand good manual dexterity for repetitive hand and finger motions.
Light work is defined as "lifting no more than 20 pounds at one time with frequent lifting or carrying of objects weighing up to 10 pounds". A good amount of standing and walking, approximately 6 hours of an 8 hour workday, is usually required of jobs in this category. Good use of hands and arms for grasping and holding is important also. A seated position which involved extensive pushing and pulling of hand or foot controls would be included in the light work category too.