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Applying for SSD/SSI With Early Onset Alzheimer's

The Alzeheimer's Association has prepared a checklist for people with a diagnosis of early onset Alzheimer's disease who are applying for Social Security Disability (SSD) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits. Early onset Alzheimer's is one of the neurological conditions that the Social Security Administration (SSA) has added to its list of Compassionate Allowances. This program puts people with certain conditions at the head of the line when the SSA evaluates their claims for disability benefits, because applicants with those conditions almost always qualify.

Although early onset Alzheimer's disease is on the Compassionate Allowances list, people seeking benefits still must meet many requirements. The checklist provided by the Association is a general guide and is summarized below.

Records and Forms Needed When Applying for SSD or SSI Benefits

It is not enough to have a diagnosis of early onset Alzheimer's. People seeking SSD or SSI benefits because they can no longer work due to the condition must also complete and provide:

  • The application for disability benefits
  • The SSA medical release form so that the agency can contact your medical providers if needed
  • The adult disability report form
  • The medical and job worksheet
  • Original or certified copy of the birth certificate
  • Military service discharge records if applicable
  • Copy of last year's W-2 form or federal tax return with schedules C and SE (if self-employed)
  • Worker's compensation information if applicable
  • Checking or savings account numbers
  • Contact information for another person if the SSA is unable to reach you.
  • Contact information for healthcare providers, especially the provider who diagnose early onset Alzheimer's.
  • List of all medications taken
  • Medical records from providers such as the primary care physician, psychiatrist, neuro-psychiatrist, and neurologist
  • Clinical information that shows how the early onset Alzheimer's have affect the ability to work, including medical history and date of onset, how the condition has impaired functionality at home and at work, results from cognitive tests and neuro-imaging results
  • A report compiled by a relative or caregiver that details the affect of the condition on activities of daily living
  • Documentation of dementia derived from standard tests such as Clinical Dementia Rating or Min Mental State Exam

In addition to providing these reports and forms, the Alzheimer's Association strongly recommends that applicants have an in-person appointment at the nearest SSA office.

Even though early-onset Alzheimer's disease is included in the Compassionate Allowances program, the process of applying for disability benefits is still daunting, as shown by the list of requirements above. If you or a loved one plan to apply for SSD or SSI benefits, do what so many others have done: Get help from the claims agents at Binder & Binder®, America's most successful disability advocates. Tell them your story and let them help you get the benefits you need and deserve if you cannot work due to early onset Alzheimer's.

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