Obtaining Benefits for PTSD with the Help of Veterans Disability Attorneys
To most people, a “disability” is a physical injury or condition that causes an individual to be physically incapable of working. However, both the Social Security Administration (SSA) and the Department of Veteran Affairs (VA) take a broader view of the term, acknowledging that psychological conditions can also present individuals from working even if they are physically capable of doing so. One of the most serious of these psychological conditions is post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). If you are suffering from PTSD and you have questions about your benefits, contact our knowledgeable veterans’ disability attorneys today.
What Is PTSD?
PTSD is a mental illness that can arise when an individual has experienced a shocking, frightening, or traumatic event. These types of events can include natural disasters, terrorist attacks, serious accidents, physical trauma (e.g., rape), and military combat. As such, it is particularly common among veterans, who often require extensive counseling and rehabilitation when they return from combat. PTSD symptoms are divided into four categories:
- Re-experiencing symptoms: Flashbacks, nightmares, and intrusive thoughts
- Avoidance symptoms: Staying away from people, places, or objects that remind the sufferer of the trauma
- Arousal and reactivity symptoms: Feelings of tension and being on edge, difficulty sleeping, and sudden outbursts of anger
- Cognition and mood symptoms: Negative thoughts, difficulty remembering, feelings of guilt or blame, and a loss of interest in activities the sufferer previously enjoyed
Many PTSD sufferers find that they can manage their condition with medication and cognitive behavioral therapy, but these treatments are not 100% effective for all sufferers.
Veterans Disability Attorneys Assist with Your Benefits Application
Benefits for veterans suffering PTSD are available from both the SSA and VA. To obtain Social Security disability benefits (SSDI) for PTSD, the applicant must present evidence showing:
- Exposure to actual or threatened death, serious injury, or violence
- Subsequent involuntary re-experiencing of the event
- Avoidance of reminders of the event
- Disturbances in mood and behavior
- Increases in arousal and reactivity
Extreme limitation of one, or marked limitation of two, of the following abilities:
- Understanding, remembering, or applying information
- Interacting with others
- Concentrating, persisting, or maintaining pace
- Adapting and managing oneself
The applicant has a documented history of the existence of the disorder over a period of at least two years and there is evidence of both (1) medical treatment, and (2) marginal adjustment.
Proving that the applicant suffers PTSD at the VA generally is simpler than at the SSA. To do so, the applicant must merely show:
- The stressor occurred during the applicant’s service,
- The applicant can’t function as well as he or she once did because of the symptoms, and
- A doctor has diagnosed the applicant with PTSD
As evidence, the applicant can submit official VA medical records, private medical records, and supporting statements from friends, family members, and others he or she served with.
If You Need Help, Please Contact the Veterans Disability Attorneys at Turley, Redmond & Rosasco
If you are suffering PTSD as a result of your military service, you deserve to be compensated to the greatest extent possible. While not required, hiring an attorney can help you present the strongest case to the SSA or VA and maximize your chances of receiving benefits. To get started, please contact the veterans disability attorneys at Turley Redmond & Rosasco by using our online form or calling us 516-745-5666 (Garden City), 631-582-3700 (Ronkonkoma), or 631-399-0400 (Shirley). We serve New York City and Long Island, including Nassau County and Suffolk County