Your New Mexico Social Security disability lawyer will explain that one of the most common health problems in the U.S. today is obesity. Individuals who are seeking to obtain benefits on the basis of obesity should know that the Social Security Administration describes obesity as “a complex, chronic disease characterized by excessive accumulation of body fat.” Year after year, the percentage of Americans who are considered to be obese continues to increase, and an Albuquerque disability lawyer will often get asked questions about how to get disability for obesity.Without a doubt, obesity can cause various other medical conditions, and it can further complicate existing ones. Specifically, obesity can have a profound effect on one’s respiratory, musculoskeletal, and cardiovascular systems. The costs associated with obesity in the United States every year is about $75 billion by some estimates.That said, you might be surprised to learn that, despite what seems to be an epidemic in the U.S., the Social Security Administration removed obesity from its Listing of Impairments in October 1999. At the time, the reasoning for the agency’s decision was because the criteria for obesity did not represent a level of functional limitation that would keep a person from being able to engage in any gainful activity. At the same time, however, the Social Security Administration made changes to certain other listings to address the potential effects that obesity can have on certain impairments in three body systems (musculoskeletal, respiratory, and cardiovascular).While it is no longer possible for a person to meet a listing based on obesity alone, an Albuquerque disability lawyer will tell you that if the Social Security Administration determines that one’s obesity is severe, that person might qualify for disability benefits by medically equaling one of the other listings. The determination of whether obesity is severe or not is based on an individualized evaluation of the impact of obesity on that person’s level of functioning and it does not equate to a specific weight or body mass index.Since the removal of obesity from the Social Security Administration’s Listing of Impairments, the ways in which a person can obtain disability benefits for obesity has become much more difficult; thus, it is now more important than ever that you have a New Mexico Social Security disability lawyer to help with your claim.
If you would like to speak to a New Mexico Social Security disability lawyer, please call the law office of Michelle Baca at 505-872-1144 for a free consultation.