Social Security Benefits Awarded to a Mother with Spinal Injuries and Mental Conditions

Janet James is a 40 year old female, who is married with two minor children.  In 2009, she applied for Social Security Disability benefits.  She worked as a flagger for road construction from September 2006 to November 2006 and also worked as a cashier.  Prior to this job, she was employed doing administrative/secretarial work.

Janet sustained injuries in her spine from a 2006 motor vehicle accident. As a result, she had pain radiating into her leg and foot.  These maladies were initially treated with physical therapy and other more conservative modalities.

It was discovered during a July 2007 diskogram of her lumbar spine that her L5-S1 diffuse had degeneration with right foramenal narrowing.  In September of 2007, she was hospitalized for lumbar fusion surgery.  In spite of this, she continued to have severe pain and weakness.  In November of 2007, a CT (Computed Tomography) scan of her lumbar spine post surgery showed the previous fusion L5-S1, left-sided pedicle screw at L5, protruding slightly beyond the anterior cortex.  A CT scan performed in February 2008 of her lumbar spine showed L4-5 disk bulge.

While she was applying for Social Security benefits, Janet had a failed work attempt.  With the assumption that Ms. James’ work attempt was proof that her symptoms were in remission, the Social Security Administration denied her claim for benefits at application and reconsideration.  Ms. James filed for a Social Security Administrative hearing.

Attorney Good outlined to the Social Security Administration that the disabilities Ms. James had that were caused by the motor vehicle accident rendered her unable to work, despite her spinal surgery and other more conservative treatments.  Ms. James also had severe shoulder pain due to the motor vehicle accident and a prior accident.  Ms. James also suffered from mental conditions.

The physical disability, coupled with her mental impairments made employment unfeasible for Ms. James.  In addition to making any vocation for her impractical, Ms. James has difficulty with basic functions.  She has difficulty ambulating, sitting or standing for any period of time.  The disabilities make the enjoyment of her previous recreational activities impossible.  Attorney Good opined to the Social Security Administration that Ms. James work attempt was not due to her disabilities being in remission, rather due to economic necessity.

The Social Security Administration awarded Janet James Social Security benefits.  They ruled that Ms. James was not able to perform her past relevant work.  Both her physical and mental limitations made full time employment unfeasible.

If you are suffering from similar medical conditions or have a disability/impairment that has rendered you unable to work, contact Neil H. Good to schedule your free case evaluation to discuss your specific health condition and your SSD eligibility.