The Social Security Administration’s Regulations lists a FIVE STEP process used to determine whether a person is disabled.
Our book outlines how Social Security Disability cases are handled and how we operate accordingly. The Berke Law Firm P.A. handles these cases on a “Contingency Basis,” and is only paid if we are successful in obtaining benefits on your behalf.
It is the mission of our firm to responsibly and professionally represent the needs of the disabled and their families.
Step 1: Social Security considers your work activity, if you have any, and whether you have been able to perform “Substantial Gainful Activity” or SGA. SGA is work activity that rises to a specific amount and frequency.
Step 2: Social Security determines if you have a “severe” impairment that significantly limits your ability to perform basic work like activities. Your severe impairment(s) also have to meet a duration requirement. (12 months duration, or an expectation that it will result in death).
Step 3: Do you have an impairment(s) that meet or exceed the established criteria contained in one, or more of Social Security’s Listings of Impairments, or “The Listings”. These are specific criteria that you must meet. If your impairment(s) meet or exceed these listed criteria, you will be found “Disabled”.
Step 4: Social Security determines your Residual Functional Capacity, or “RFC”. (How long you are able to sit, stand, walk – how much you are able to lift and carry, whether you can see, hear, attend work, read, write, and whether or not you can concentrate, remember things, deal with people, etc…). Once your maximum RFC has been determined, Social Security determines whether or not you can perform the type of work you performed, in the past.
Step 5: Social Security determines if there are any other jobs in the national economy that you are able to perform.