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Brain injury and Social Security disability benefits for injury

Most of our Los Angeles readers know that Social Security disability benefits are not awarded to just anyone who applies. There are stringent requirements that must be met in order to have a chance to receive SSD benefits. Besides the "work credits" requirements, which other posts here have addressed, the applicant's disability must meet the definition of "disability" as prescribed by the Social Security Administration. And, in short, that definition can be a high bar to meet: the medical condition must keep the applicant from working in any meaningful capacity, and the disability must be expected to last 12 months or longer -- or result in death.

Of all the injuries that a Los Angeles resident could suffer from that may qualify for SSD benefits, a traumatic brain injury would likely be right at the top of the list. Traumatic brain injuries, or "TBIs," can be extremely serious and debilitating physical conditions. Not only would a person who suffers a TBI be unable to work, the person may have severe limitations in just completing the simplest tasks of daily life.

In fact, the Brain Injury Association of California estimates that every year there are about 1.7 million people who suffer a TBI in America. Of all of these people, approximately 52,000 actually die as a result of the injury.

When a Los Angeles resident suffers a TBI, there will likely be immediate concerns among family members as to how that person's lost wages will be replaced. If the TBI is serious enough, the injured person's income may never be replaced. But, there is a possibility that Social Security disability benefits could provide some measure of financial relief.

Source: Brain Injury Association of California, "Brain Injury Information," Accessed Jan. 2, 2016

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