Suffering from a seizure can be terrifying and utterly confusing, not only for the person experiencing the seizure, but also for those witnessing the event. A seizure disorder can also be debilitating, perhaps preventing a person in Michigan from being able to drive or work. Thankfully, Social Security disability benefits may be available for those persons suffering from seizures and seizure-related disorders, such as epilepsy.
When a person with epilepsy applies to the Social Security Administration for SSD benefits, the SSA will consider the frequency, duration and type of seizures a person has been having. Before awarding benefits, the SSA will need detailed information about a person’s typical seizure, including information about any tongue bites or other injuries that may have occurred. It is important to supply the SSA with information from a person’s physician about the seizures, but, if a professional has not observed a patient’s seizures, it is imperative to include witnesses’ accounts of the seizures.
The SSA differentiates between convulsive and nonconvulsive epilepsy. To obtain benefits for convulsive epilepsy, in addition to documentation of a person’s typical seizure pattern, the SSA will be looking for the occurrence of daytime seizure episodes in which there was a loss of consciousness and convulsive seizures, or nocturnal episodes that interfere with a person’s daily activities. For nonconvulsive epilepsy, the SSA will be looking for evidence that there has been an alteration of awareness or consciousness, or other significant interference with a person’s daily activities.
A person who has experienced seizures may have extensive medical expenses or other long-term care needs, and the financial support that SSD benefits offer can be life-changing. An attorney familiar with the process of applying for benefits may be able to offer invaluable assistance.
Source: ssa.gov, “11.00 Neurological – Adult,” accessed Nov. 20, 2015