The medical conditions that qualify for disability benefits may be on your mind. Your diagnosis may be included in that list, too. Some medical ailments are eligible for disability benefits listed below, but as you will discover, any medical condition may qualify.
Yet, the degree of incapacity your medical condition brings is always the primary concern. Moreover, consider if the severity of your impairment meets the criteria for different disability benefit plans and programs. This article outlines common debilitating conditions and analyzes the eligibility criteria for various disability payments in Canada.
How To Qualify for Disability
Living with a medical condition that prevents you from working can be financially devastating. Fortunately, the Canadian government offers financial support through the disability benefits program. If you cannot work due to a medical condition, you may be eligible for disability benefits. However, applying for disability benefits can be complex, so before you begin, you must understand the requirements that qualify for disability in Canada.
To qualify for disability benefits, you must have a medical condition that has lasted, or is expected to last, for at least one year and prevents you from working. The illness must also be severe enough to affect your ability to perform your duties. Not all medical conditions will qualify for disability benefits, and it can be challenging to determine whether your situation meets the eligibility criteria. If you’re unsure about your eligibility, contact a Toronto labour lawyer specializing in disability law.
Medical Conditions that Qualify for Long-Term Disability
Long-term disability benefits provide financial assistance to individuals who cannot work due to a medical condition for an extended period.
Musculoskeletal issues affect the body’s bones, muscles, ligaments, and tendons. Some of the musculoskeletal problems that may qualify for long-term disability benefits include:
- Arthritis – Arthritis affects the joints in the body, causing pain and stiffness
- Sciatica – A condition that affects the sciatic nerve, causing pain in the lower back, hips, and legs.
- Scoliosis affects the spine, causing it to curve to the side.
- Fibromyalgia – A chronic condition that causes widespread pain and fatigue.
- Carpal tunnel syndrome – This involves the hand and wrist, causing pain, numbness, and tingling
- Spinal stenosis
- Back problems such as degenerative disc disease. These could cause chronic pain and limit a person’s ability to work.
Personal injuries that can qualify for long-term disability benefits are typically the result of accidents or trauma. Some personal injuries include:
- Accidents- These could happen anytime, resulting in severe injuries and preventing a person from working long hours.
- Slip and fall injuries are another common cause of personal injuries that can lead to long-term disability.
- Penetrating head injuries can also result in long-term disability, as they can cause cognitive and physical impairments that limit a person’s ability to work.
- Brain injuries and trauma – injuries can also cause long-term disability.
- Fractured spinal injuries – These can result in chronic pain and limit a person’s mobility.
Chronic pain lasts over three months and can be caused by various underlying medical conditions. Some of the medical conditions that can cause chronic pain and qualify for long-term disability benefits include:
- Back pain,
- Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a chronic condition affecting the digestive system, causing abdominal pain, bloating, and diarrhea or constipation.
- Nerve pain, and
Mental Health & Psychological Illnesses
Various underlying factors, including genetics, environmental factors, and life experiences, can cause mental health and psychological illnesses. Some mental health and psychological diseases that can qualify for long-term disability benefits include:
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) – is a mental health condition that can develop after a person experiences a traumatic event, such as a natural disaster, sexual assault, or military combat.
- Schizophrenia is a chronic mental health condition affecting a person’s ability to think, feel, and behave.
- Bipolar disorder is a mental health condition that causes extreme mood swings, including periods of depression and mania.
Cardiovascular conditions affect the heart and blood vessels, and they can qualify for long-term disability benefits in Canada. Some cardiovascular diseases that are eligible for long-term disability benefits include:
- Hypertension/ high blood pressure,
- Chronic heart disease. This is a condition that affects the heart’s function and can cause shortness of breath, chest pain, and fatigue.,
- Heart attack. This occurs when there is a blockage in the blood vessels that supply the heart, which can cause damage to the heart muscle.
- Stroke. A stroke occurs when blood flow to the brain is disrupted.
- Coronary artery disease. It is a disease that occurs when there is a buildup of plaque in the arteries that supply the heart.
Neurological disorders are medical conditions that affect the brain and nervous system. Some neurological disorders that qualify for long-term disability benefits include:
- Parkinson’s disease. A chronic and progressive neurological disorder that affects movement
- Multiple sclerosis (MS). A chronic autoimmune disease that affects the central nervous system
- Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). A neurological disorder that affects the motor neurons in the brain and spinal cord, causing muscle weakness and eventual paralysis.
- Epilepsy. A neurological disorder that causes seizures and can cause significant impairment in a person’s ability to work.
Respiratory conditions affect the lungs and breathing, and they can qualify for long-term disability benefits in Canada. Some respiratory infections eligible for long-term disability benefits include:
- Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). A chronic respiratory condition that causes difficulty breathing.
- Chronic lung disease. A broad term encompasses several lung and breathing conditions, including pulmonary fibrosis and emphysema.
- Asthma. A condition that causes the airways to become inflamed, making it difficult to breathe.
Living with a respiratory condition can be challenging, especially if it affects your ability to work and earn a living. If you have a respiratory condition that prevents you from working for an extended period, speak with an employment lawyer specializing in disability law to determine whether you may be eligible for long-term disability benefits.