Social Security has a special ruling for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. This ruling is a great tool you can use to help your case. It is helpful to keep in mind that this ruling is not a requirement. You do not need to exactly meet everything in this ruling in order to get approved.
Establishing a Diagnosis
According to the ruling, certain symptoms would be documented by your doctor for six months or more. Learn more about how to use this ruling to Establish a Diagnosis of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Collecting Medical Evidence
Social Security will look to see that you have at least one piece of medical evidence. Your evidence could be an abnormal result on a lab test, or outcomes from an assessment test by a specialist, or a medical sign your doctor finds while examining you. Learn how to Collect Medical Evidence for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.
Do not skip this step. I will repeat: Do Not Skip This Step. I am repeating this because so many people skip this step and then wonder why they were not approved. Learn How to Prove Functioning.
🌸 Here’s the complete Social Security ruling. Unfortunately, if you bring this to your doctor, you may spend the entire visit trying to figure out what half the things on this page mean.
🌸 Here’s a shorter version you can print and bring to your doctor if you wish. It includes just the medical criteria without all the Social Security policy language.
🌸 You can also share with your doc this Social Security fact sheet on Providing Medical Evidence for People with ME/CFS.
🌸 Zinnia got approved for disability by bringing a copy of the ruling to her doctor and then working with her doctor to create a letter which showed how her condition matched the ruling: Zinnia Uses the Social Security Ruling for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
🌸 Hyacinth’s doctor did a fantastic job of including all aspects of the ruling in Doctor Lapp’s Amazing Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Disability Letter
🌸 Here is an article by attorney Ken Casanova that reviews and describes the ruling.
🌸 Here you will find many more ideas and strategies for How to Get Approved for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
🌸 If you are also planning to apply for Long Term Disability (private disability through your employer) please take a look here: How to Get LTD for ME and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
🌸 This ruling uses the term “Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.” We are using it here to stay in line with the ruling. If you are applying for Social Security, it may help your case if you and your doctor list a diagnosis of “Chronic Fatigue Syndrome” along with any other conditions you may have.
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Updated May 2018. If you found this page helpful, please share it with others by pressing one of these magic little buttons: