How is disability defined?

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Updated: 4/13/2007 3:35 pm
The word disability has different meanings in different areas of the law. Under government programs such as Social Security Disability Insurance and Supplemental Security Income, being disabled and therefore entitled to benefits is defined as: 'Having a medically proven physical or mental impairment.' The definition further adds that 'This impairment must prevent the person from doing any substantially gainful work', and that 'the impairment is expected to last at least twelve months or result in death.' The Social Security Administration evaluates disability differently, depending on a person's age, education, and previous work experience. For more information, talk with you local Social Security office or consult an attorney who is knowledgeable in social security law.
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