we fight for the rights of the injured and disabled

Can I receive disability benefits after an amputation?

Life is full of uncertainties. One moment you may be driving home after a fruitful day at work and the next, you are fighting for dear life following a catastrophic car wreck. If a life experience like an accident or an infection leads to the loss of a limb, you may need to make a number of adjustments to your life.

Depending on the severity, an amputation can diminish your movement and ability to work. Consequently, you may want to know if you qualify for Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits.

Qualifying for disability benefits following an amputation

SSD benefits are a federal-funded program that offers financial assistance to qualified individuals who can no longer work due to a disabling or terminal condition. To qualify for disability benefits, your condition must satisfy the Social Security Administration’s definition of a disability.

For amputation to qualify for disability benefits, it typically needs to meet the following criteria:

  • Amputation on both hands
  • Amputation on one or both lower extremities that are done above the ankle and with stump complications that are expected to last for at least 12 months
  • Amputation of one hand and one lower extremity above the ankle that renders you unable to move properly
  • Hip disarticulation or hemipelvectomy

As a standard procedure, the SSA will demand to see your medical records. These records should clearly detail the nature of your amputation as well as your ability to move. They should also outline any complications and limitations that you are likely to experience in the future. For example, outlining how it could prevent you from working.

Not many life experiences are as traumatic as losing a limb. If an amputation renders you unable to work, you need to find out if you qualify for disability benefits.

FindLaw Network