Parkinson’s and the Social Security Disability Grids
The Social Security Administration uses at five step process to determine whether or not a Parkinson’s disease patient qualifies for Social Security Disability benefits. At Step 4 of the 5 Step Sequential Evaluation, the Social Security Administration will determine whether you have the ability to perform work that you have done in the past despite your Parkinson’s disease. If the Social Security Administration finds that you can do you past work then your benefits are denied. However, if you can’t do your past relevant work then the Social Security Administration will proceed to the fifth and final step.
At Step 5, the Social Security Administration will review your age, education, work experience and physical and mental condition to determine what other work, if any, you can perform.
At Step 5, the Social Security Administration will use something called the medical vocational rules or the grids, which vary according to age.
So, your age is crucial during the application of the grid.
– Under Age 50: You have to be unable to perform the sedentary work that requires you to lift a maximum of 10lbs at a time, sit 6 hours and occasionally walk and stand 2 hours per day.
– Age 50 or older: You are limited to performing sedentary work but have no work related skills that would allow you to do so.
– Age 55 or older: Ability to perform light work, has no work related skills that would allow you to do so.
– Over Age 60: Unable to perform any of the jobs that you performed in the last 50 years.
Of course, regardless of our age, if you have a psychological impairment that prevents even simple unskilled work, the Social Security Administration will determine that your are disabled as a result of Parkinson’s disease.