Can You Qualify For Disability For Cirrhosis?

The Social Security Administration, or SSA, has strict rules and regulations when it comes to approving disability claims for illnesses that result from alcohol and drug use. In some cases, claims for a disease that results from alcohol or drug use are rejected. However, if you suffer from liver disease that is the result of alcoholic cirrhosis, there is a chance that you can qualify for assistance. Here is what you need to know. 

What Do You Need to Prove to Be Approved?

Your application for benefits is evaluated for certain criteria when it is first received. Those criteria take into account your income, the nature of your disability, and how long the disability is expected to last. Your income level has to be below a set amount to be approved. In 2015, if your income exceeded $1,090 each month, you could not qualify for benefits. 

When evaluating your disability, the SSA wants to be sure that it is disabling enough that you cannot work and that it will last at least 12 months. If you have alcoholic cirrhosis, the severity of the condition will dictate whether or not you can be approved for benefits. The diagnosis of the condition is not enough to get the approval. The disease has to have progressed enough that it is resulting in complications that are considered impairing by the SSA.

What Is Considered Impairing?

The SSA maintains a list of medical conditions and complications that it considers severe enough to qualify for disability benefits. There are several complications that pertain to alcoholic cirrhosis. If your condition has deteriorated to the point that you have developed hepatorenal syndrome, spontaneous bacterial peritonitis, or end-stage liver disease, you would meet the requirements for automatic approval of benefits. There are several other complications that are also on the list. 

The SSA commonly rules that illnesses caused by alcohol and drugs are ineligible for benefits. The justification for this is that by discontinuing the use of these substances, your health would improve and you would no longer need benefits. However, if your disease cannot be improved by stopping alcohol or drug usage, you could qualify for benefits. Since cirrhosis is a progressive disease, you could receive benefits since your condition will continue to deteriorate. 

What If You Do Not Have a Complication?

If your condition has not advanced to the point that you meet the criteria for an automatic approval, you can still try for approval. Your doctor can complete a residual functional capacity form. The form is an assessment of how well you can perform functions, such as walking, lifting, standing, and understanding directions. If your doctor believes that you are physically unable to perform the duties of your job, this could possibly lead to an approval of benefits. 

Getting approval for a benefits application due to alcoholic cirrhosis can be difficult in some instances. To improve the chances of approval, work with an experienced attorney like Duncan Disability Law SC.

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What Can Happen If You’re Charged With Identity Theft

Identity theft is something that has been around for a long time. As technology has advanced and more information is stored digitally, it has become much easier for identity theft to occur. However, even something as simple as forging someone’s signature on something can be considered identity theft. If you are charged with this crime, you may wonder what will happen if you go to trial. The answer to that depends on several factors.

Misdemeanor or Felony?

One of the most important things to know about your identity theft charges is whether or not your state considers the crime to be a misdemeanor or a felony. Misdemeanors are crimes that are not as serious as felonies, and usually require minimal jail time, if any at all. In a lot of cases with misdemeanors, fines are imposed and the person convicted of the crime is put on probation for a period of time. However, if you are a repeated offender, the judge may require you to serve time in jail instead of giving you probation.

Some states consider certain identity theft charges to be considered different classes of misdemeanors or felonies. If that is true for the state you are charged in, it can greatly impact what will happen if you are convicted of the crime.

Multiple Charges Doesn’t Necessarily Mean Multiple Convictions

Since different identity theft charges can lead to different sentences, it can be extremely distressing to be charged with more than one count of identity theft. However, the prosecution has to prove that you are guilty of each charge. Just because they prove one of the identity theft charges, doesn’t mean all of the others are automatically proven. 

It can be very difficult for the prosecution to prove you are guilty of identity theft charges because they have to prove it beyond a reasonable doubt. And, depending on how many separate charges you are facing, it can be a daunting task to do. So, if you are standing before the judge and you hear that you have been found guilty of your first charge, there is no guarantee that the jury was convinced of your guilt on the other charges.

 Understand Your Ability to Appeal If Convicted

If you are convicted of any identity theft charges, you have the right to appeal your conviction. However, this only applies if your conviction wasn’t from a plea deal with the prosecution. You can only appeal your conviction if the case went to trial and you were convicted that way.

If you are innocent and want to appeal, you have can do one of several things. You can ask that the judge overturn the guilty verdict returned by the jury, request a new trial, or ask a higher court to overturn your conviction. As long as you file your appeal in time, you are at least guaranteed a review of your trial by an appellate court. So, never take a conviction lying down if you truly believe you are innocent. For more information, contact a criminal defense attorney (like those at Alvine & King LLP).

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