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Photo of David Dopkin

People with bipolar disorder can get disability benefits

On Behalf of | Sep 3, 2015 | Social Security Disability Benefits for Mental Conditions

People in Houston who are fortunate enough to have never had a mental illness, or to not have had a close relative or friend with one, may not fully understand how disabling some mental illnesses can be. But the reality is that people who suffer from mental illness may be almost completely unable to function in everyday life and handle their own affairs.

Bipolar disorder, for example, causes people to experience drastic mood swings. But people who have no experience with this disorder may not understand that the effects of bipolar disorder can rob a person of his or her ability to concentrate in school, perform a job or do many of the other daily tasks that other people take for granted. For this reason, people with debilitating mental illnesses, like bipolar disorder, can qualify for Social Security Disability benefits.

The Social Security Administration maintains a guidebook, known as the “Blue Book,” that lists the conditions that qualify one for disability benefits. Under Section 12.04 of the Blue Book, adults with bipolar disorder can qualify for benefits if they have at least a two-year history of having the disorder and they have been receiving medical treatment. In addition to those two requirements, the person seeking benefits must show that he or she suffers from certain symptoms that are common amongst people with bipolar disorder.

Although Social Security benefits can be crucial to helping a person cope with the adverse effects of bipolar disorder, filing for disability benefits may seem like an overwhelming process for people in this position. If people need help with filing a mental disability claim or with any steps along the way toward getting the benefits that they need, they might wish to consider contacting an experienced Texas Social Security attorney.

Source: International Bipolar Foundation, “How To Apply For Social Security Disability With Bipolar Disorder,” Accessed on August 30, 2015