Posted: April 13, 2012
Last week, the Social Security Administration announced information that may be of interest to you or the families you serve. The federal agency added 52 new conditions to its Compassionate Allowances program, which fast-tracks disability decisions to ensure that Americans with the most serious disabilities receive their benefit decisions within days instead of months or years.
The Compassionate Allowances initiative identifies claims where the nature of the applicant's disease or condition clearly meets the statutory standard for disability. With the help of sophisticated new information technology, the agency can quickly identify potential Compassionate Allowances and then quickly make decisions.
Social Security launched the Compassionate Allowances program in 2008 with a list of 50 diseases and conditions. The announcement of 52 new conditions, effective in August, will increase the total number of Compassionate Allowances conditions to 165. The conditions include certain cancers, adult brain disorders, a number of rare genetic disorders of children, early-onset Alzheimer's disease, immune system conditions, and other disorders.
The agency also is improving its online disability application process, which is already substantially shorter than the standard paper application. Starting April 21, 2012, adults who file for benefits online will have the option to electronically sign and submit their Authorization to Disclose Information to the Social Security Administration (Form SSA-827). This improvement allows applicants to complete disability applications in a streamlined online session, rather than printing, signing, and mailing paper authorization forms to Social Security offices.
For more information on the Compassionate Allowances initiative, please visit www.socialsecurity.gov/compassionateallowances.
New Compassionate Allowances Conditions
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