January 18, 2020

Why are age, education, and work history so important?

and how does the SSA use this information to help make a decision in my case?

Factors that come into play with disability cases

If you have recently filed an SSDI or SSI claim, or have been denied and are awaiting a hearing date for your appeal, then you may already be aware of the pitfalls encountered during either process. Delays and denials are the two most common characteristics involved with numerous SSDI and SSI cases that are still pending and gathering dust on some SSA judge’s or staff member’s desk.

Denials of SSDI or SSI benefits often arise from a number of aspects such as the following:

  • If you have worked after the onset or the diagnosis of your liver disease or disorder, it is possible that the adjudicator in your case will deny your application
  • It is a common practice of many adjudicators to simply deny applications when they have too many disability claims to deal with
  • It is not uncommon for adjudicators to simply deny an new application if the individual has applied before and been denied
  • Some adjudicators will just reject any case where a particular medical condition or disease does not meet one of the SSA’s “listings” of impairments
  • Some SSDI benefits applications may feature numerous listings but not the main problem

The importance of age, education, and work history

In most SSDI or SSI cases, if the applicant is over the age of 50, the SSA will tend towards rendering a more favorable than if the individual is younger than 50. This is especially when the 50+ year old individual has a limited education and skill levels. Additionally, the SSA understands that the older you are, the more difficult it becomes to find certain types of jobs, even entry-level, simple-task oriented, or sit-down types of jobs.

As with the age factor above, the SSA views individuals with a limited education in a more favorable light as well. Those individuals who have achieved a higher level of education have a clear cut advantage over those individuals who have a limited education where finding gainful employment is concerned. However, you will still have to prove that your medical or mental condition has made it impossible for you to work.

Finally, your work history plays a significant role as well. The best example we can give you is this. Let’s say that you have become disabled after working 20 years in the construction industry. The ALJ or judge reviewing your case is more likely to assume that you would be incapable of working in a white collar position.