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SSA Listings What are they and How can they help my case

Social Security Listings are conditions which have been deemed severe enough, by law, that if the claimant meets or equals a listing they should be automatically found disabled, no further questions asked. SSA has listings which cover both adults and children. This post will talk solely about adult listings, but may also be applicable to children listings.

There are 14 different categories of listings. These range from neurological, respiratory, to Autoimmune and Mental disorders. The difficulty with proving that you meet a listing at either the initial or reconsideration stage is that the listing looks for very specific information. For example some of the respiratory listings (3.00) require Arterial Blood Gases tests, which many physicians no longer do to evaluate the disease. Without the specific tests shown in the listings, most DDS workers will not find that you meet or equal the listing.

The other issue with trying to meet or equal a listing is that you cannot rely on what your Doctor has told you, but rather only what they have put in your medical records. If your records are missing the pathology report that shows your cancer, you’re not going to be able to show you meet or equal the listing. If SSA was not sent your pulmonary function report or your doctor determines you are so severe he does not need to perform a certain test, you cannot show you meet or equal a listing at the initial or reconsideration levels.

You are more likely to prove you equal a listing to an ALJ. To equal a listing, you must show that your condition is as severe as the listing requires, but you lack the specific requirements of the listing. Another example would be proving that you equal listing 12.05 with an IQ score of 71, instead of 70 or equating a CAPD (central auditory process disorder) with difficulties with background noise to listing 2.11(b).

You can also use the ability to equate to a listing for conditions that are not found in the listings, like CAPD mentioned above. The listings cannot cover every condition and every presentation of those listed. In addition, many times claimants may have symptoms stemming from one condition that meet a different listing. For example, one can have a diagnosis of Diabetes (listing 9.00) but the symptoms are generally evaluated under other listings like 11.14 Peripheral neuropathies.

If you feel your condition meets or equals a listing, look at the specific listing and what is required. Show it to your doctor and ask them to do the specific tests needed or to explain in your medical records why those tests should not be performed. By proving you meet or equal a listing, you eliminate Social Security’s ability to question whether you can do your past work or any other work.

To review them for your self – SSA Adult Listings