Does your depression qualify you for disability benefits?

If you are unable to work, you know that this can have a direct and significant impact on your life and your family. An inability to maintain gainful employment is a threat to your financial stability, and you may find that your current mental or physical condition will be unlikely to allow you to hold a normal job at any point in the near future. If you struggle with severe depression, you may find that, while you are physically capable of working, your mental state will not allow you to do so. 

In certain situations, an individual with depression could be eligible for disability benefits through the Social Security Administration. The SSA has programs that offer qualified applicants support as they are unable to support themselves. You may benefit from learning more about whether you could qualify for these benefits, and if you do, how you can prepare to file a claim for Social Security Disability Insurance benefits. 

The impact of depression 

While depression may be a relatively common mental condition, it can have an uncommon effect on the lives of those who suffer from it. Some manage their symptoms with medication and through other means, but that is not necessarily the case for everyone with depression. In order to qualify for SSDI benefits for this condition, it must be such that it precludes you from maintaining gainful employment. If your depression has led to the following, you may qualify: 

  • Depressed moods 
  • Substantial weight loss 
  • Disturbance in sleep 
  • Less interest in all activities 
  • Difficulty concentrating or completing tasks 
  • Inability to maintain oneself 

As you prepare to file your claim, you will need to provide certain types of documentation, which could include medical records and verified accounts of how depression has impacted your life. If you are not successful on your first attempt to secure disability benefits, you can seek a reconsideration of your claim. 

Help for the process 

Seeking disability benefits is a complex process for an Illinois applicant, and many initial claims come back denied. If you are unsure of whether you qualify or where to begin with your application, you may benefit from seeking the insight of an experienced professional who can assess your claim and advise you on how to move forward. 


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The Law Office of William C. Wombacher

Local: 309-674-8125
Fax: 309-674-8149

Commerce Bank Building
416 Main Street Suite 700
Peoria, IL 61602
NELF | National Elder Law Foundation
CAP | Council of Advanced Practitioners | NAELA | National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys, Inc.
Illinois State Bar Association