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Social Security Qualifications for Intellectual Disability: Chico SSDI

Unfortunately, many people in our culture don’t understand—or aren’t even aware—of the incredible difficulties an intellectually disabled individual faces in trying to find and maintain employment. 

Often, if a person with this class of disability finds a job, it will be limited hours at minimum wage position—hardly enough to pay the bills. Depending on his living situation, capacity for self-care, and mobility options, keeping even a job of this nature may require an unsustainable level of support from loved ones.

That’s why the SSA offers disability benefits for qualifying individuals.

What are the Social Security Administration’s qualifications for intellectual disability?

Intellectual handicaps, including below-average intellectual capacity and an inability to adapt to one’s immediate circumstances, must be identified before the individual turns 22. To meet the SSA standard, the claimant must also demonstrate compelling evidence that they fall into one of the following categories: 

  • Are heavily dependent on others for basic self-care. If a person is unable to eat, dress, or maintain basic hygiene without assistance, it’s obvious that they wouldn’t be able to function at a workplace.
  • An IQ score of 59 or less.
  • An IQ score of 60 to 70, along with an additional physical or mental disability that would also create obstacles in the workplace.
  • An IQ score of 60 to 70, along with documented evidence of pronounced difficulties in at least two of the following areas:
    • Basic daily tasks
    • Social interaction
    • Concentrating, persistence, or pace
    • Multiple instances of decompensating, or a marked decrease in an individual’s condition, either permanently or for extended episodes

Unfortunately, intellectual disabilities are less tangible than physical disabilities. Proving an individual qualifies for the Social Security standard can be a challenge, even for someone experienced with the SSA system. 

If you have been struggling to help a loved one obtain SSI or SSDI for their intellectual disabilities, only to be denied, it may be time to seek legal guidance. Talk with a Northern California disability attorney at the Ledgerwood Law Group to learn more. Call toll-free at 888.761.7383 today.


Thomas Ledgerwood
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