Regardless of where you work or the job duties you perform, you use your arms and legs every day. While many limb injuries may interfere with your ability to work, an amputation may make it downright impossible to perform your job duties.
An amputation is simply the loss of a limb, which may occur in a couple different ways. First, you may lose your arm or leg in a traumatic event, such as a car accident. Doctors may also amputate one of your limbs to treat a serious medical condition, like gangrene or infection. Either way, you may be eligible for Social Security Disability Insurance benefits.
The severity of your injury
When it comes to interfering with your work abilities, some amputations are worse than others. Consequently, the Social Security Administration does not automatically extend benefits to all amputees. To qualify for benefits, your amputation must be severe.
The following amputations are typically severe enough to qualify for SSDI benefits:
- Amputation of both hands
- Amputation of one or both legs above the ankle, provided you cannot use prosthetic devices for a year or longer
- Amputation of one hand and one leg above the ankle, provided you cannot move normally or work
- Amputation of a leg at the hip joint
Your medical records
If you plan to apply for SSDI benefits, you should gather extensive documentation about your amputation. Collecting X-rays and other diagnostic images, tissue tests, physical therapy notes and other records may boost your chances of receiving SSDI benefits.
With therapy, prosthetic devices and hard work, you may be able to return to your job duties after suffering an amputation. Ultimately, though, if you cannot work, SSDI benefits may give you the financial resources you need to support yourself and your family.