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How cancer is evaluated and its evidence for SSD benefits

For Floridians who are diagnosed with cancer, the prospects of receiving Social Security disability benefits for illness is something to consider. However, it is important to know how the Social Security Administration (SSA) goes about determining whether a claimant can receive SSD benefits. The listings for cancer evaluate every form of the disease the person might have.

When the SSA evaluates cancer for purposes of benefits, it considers the following: the cancer’s origin; its extent of involvement; the duration, frequency and what the response of the claimant is to the anticancer therapy; and the effects of the post-therapeutic residuals. The evidence that the SSA needs will depend upon the specific type of cancer.

With an operative procedure such as a needle aspiration or a biopsy, the SSA will need copies of the operative note and the pathology report. If these documents cannot be acquired by the SSA, the agency will accept the medical report summary. There should be details of what was found during the surgery and the pathological findings. Some instances will require evidence regarding whether the cancer has recurred, its persistence, its progression, how it is reacting to treatment, and other residuals that are considered to be significant.

Those who are diagnosed with cancer and are unable to work because of it might reach the requirements for qualifying SSD benefits for illness. Before moving forward in seeking disability benefits, it is important to know what the criteria is to be declared disabled when diagnosed with cancer. Speaking to an attorney who has knowledge and experience in helping Florida clients with their SSD application and going through the process can be a helpful first step.

Source:, “13.00 Cancer — Adult — A, B, D,” accessed April 17, 2016



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