Get the Legal Support You Need from a Lupus Attorney in Philadelphia, PA
Lupus is a chronic autoimmune disease affecting millions of Americans. It ranges in severity from mild to life threatening and can have a significant impact on daily activities, specifically the ability to seek and maintain full-time employment. Nevertheless, with proper treatment, most people with Lupus lead full and meaningful lives.
If you or a family member has been diagnosed with Lupus and is having difficulties with employment or the law, there are answers. Know your rights and get the information you need to protect yourself with the help of a caring and compassionate Lupus lawyer in Philadelphia, PA. Attorney Lisa M. Ritacco is ready to help.
Lupus affects men and women, although the majority of cases are women between the ages of 15-44. People of all races are susceptible to the disease and, while there are millions of Lupus sufferers worldwide, more than 16,000 new cases are reported annually in the United States alone.
Most people with lupus experience flares, or periods where their symptoms are exacerbated for a period of time. During a flare even every day activities can be very difficult to perform due to extreme fatigue, joint pain and stiffness, headaches, and difficulty concentrating. Exercise and proper rest are strongly encouraged during non-flare periods as a means to lessen fatigue and maintain energy levels.
For millions of Americans diagnosed with Lupus, maintaining full-time employment can be challenging. Lisa M. Ritacco, a Lupus Lawyer in Philadelphia, PA, can provide you with the tools you need to more effectively explain your condition to others, specifically as it relates to your limitations, employment and Social Security disability.
Proving Eligibility for Lupus Disability Benefits
If you want to get lupus disability benefits, you can do so either by meeting the requirements for lupus in Social Security’s listing or by proving your condition is serious enough that it prevents you from working. To be eligible for Social Security for lupus under the listing, your condition must affect at least two of your body’s organs and systems and you must display two or more of these symptoms:
- Unwanted weight loss
- Low mental or physical activity caused by extreme fatigue
- Feelings of illness or discomfort which cause you to experience low activity
If you do not have at least two of these symptoms but your lupus affects at least two organs or systems, you can also prove your eligibility under Social Security’s listing for the condition if you have recurring symptoms from lupus that lead to limitations of:
- Social function
- Everyday activities
- Timely activity completion
You must be able to show these limitations severely impact your ability to complete tasks.
If you have been denied disability and you cannot meet these requirements, you may still be able to prove disability eligibility if you can show your condition impacts your ability to work. You may only have one required symptom or only one organ affected, for example, making you ineligible for disability under the listing. However, if you can show your condition impacts your ability to work, you may still qualify for disability.
Proving your eligibility in either case will require documentation. You may want to visit a specialist in lupus and get tests to prove your diagnosis and to help establish how much the condition affects your abilities. You will also want to keep careful records of pain levels, activities you cannot do, treatments attempted, treatment results and all medical appointments related to your condition.
Denied Disability Benefits for Lupus?
Even if you have the symptoms required to prove Social Security’s listing for lupus, you may still be denied benefits if you cannot prove you are eligible. If you have been denied, there are many reasons why this has happened. You may not have filled out or submitted forms correctly. You may have made errors when submitting your application. One common reason has to do with not presenting strong evidence of your condition and its impact on your abilities. Also, you may not have adequately shown the diagnosis of your condition.
If you have lupus and want to apply for disability, it is important to show any medical evidence related to your condition. This may mean X-rays, MRIs, CT scans, biopsies and other tests. After each flare-up of symptoms, you will want to visit your doctor and get treatment for at least three months before applying. If you have been denied disability, you may still be able to get benefits if you can prove you are eligible.
If you have been denied benefits and have lupus, contact a lupus disability lawyer with experience in disability claims. An attorney may be able to review your situation and determine some possible areas where your claim may be strengthened. To speak to a lupus disability attorney, turn to the law office of Lisa M. Ritacco for a consultation.
Living and Working with Lupus: How a Lupus Lawyer in Reading, Lancaster or Philadelphia, PA Can Help
It’s not uncommon for people living with Lupus to struggle with full-time employment. Treating Lupus effectively requires spending significant time at the doctor’s office away from work and taking additional time to recover from outbreaks or “flares”. This makes it particularly difficult to fulfill job responsibilities.
Disability Attorney Ritacco, a Lupus lawyer serving the Lancaster, Reading and Philadelphia areas, can help significantly. Contact Lisa M. Ritacco to help you make informed decisions when it comes to your disease and filing a claim for Social Security Disability benefits. As a Lupus attorney in the Lancaster, PA area, Lisa M. Ritacco can inform you of your rights, your responsibilities and prepare you for what you should know when filing a claim for Social Security Disability benefits.
For more information on Lupus visit the Lupus Foundation of America.