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Disability Law Offices of Tony Adderley

Obesity Is Officially A Disease

  • By: Tony Adderley
  • Published: November 21, 2014
Choosing Your Physician

In 2013, the American Medical Association (AMA) released a report officially recognizing obesity as a disease. This does not mean, however, that obese persons automatically qualify to receive Social Security disability benefits; it’s somewhat more complicated than that. If you need to receive disability benefits from Social Security in the Los Angeles area or anywhere in southern California, get the help you need by speaking at once with an experienced Los Angeles Social Security disability attorney.

One in every three Americans is considered obese, and the AMA is hoping that by defining obesity as a disease, the medical community will fight obesity – and the ancillary diseases associated with it – more aggressively. The AMA would also like to see insurance companies take obesity more seriously and pay for more counseling and treatment.

But just because obesity has been “officially” declared a disease doesn’t mean the obese are entitled to monthly disability payments. The burden of proof still rests on the applicant – and the applicant’s attorney – to prove how obesity and obesity-related symptoms affect an applicant’s ability to work and carry out day-to-day functions. However, symptoms associated with obesity may appear in the Social Security Administration’s Listing of Impairments, and thus may qualify the claimant for benefits. For example, if you are obese and suffer from a listed cardiovascular disease such as coronary heart disease, you are more likely to receive benefits. Social Security defines disability in terms of limitations to your work capacity. Your obesity must limit your functionality – your ability to work – so if you’re obese but otherwise healthy, and your obesity does not impair your ability to function in a job setting, you probably will not be approved for benefits.

Many obese persons, however, are in fact unable to function in a job setting, and if this describes you, you should speak at once with an experienced Los Angeles Social Security disability attorney. With the right attorney, the right strategy, and the right medical documents, you may be able to receive monthly disability benefits if you are unable to work in southern California. Take the first step toward obtaining the payments you need and make the call today.

About the Author Tony Adderley has been working as a professional advocate for
individuals entitled to Social Security Disability (SSD) and worker’s
compensation benefits for more than 20 years.