Comparability Test

What does Comparability Test mean?

Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) is awarded to claimant’s who are disabled with a severe mental or physical health condition which is expected to last for at least 12 continuous months and does not allow the worker to perform what is considered substantial gainful activity (SGA). Workers must also have worked and paid employment taxes to the federal government to generate work credits. Only workers with sufficient work credits will be eligible to receive SSDI benefits.

After the SSA determines the worker meets the nonmedical requirements for SSDI (sufficient work credits, not working too many hours when they apply, and not making too much money when they apply) the SSA will review the claimant’s medical condition and determine if it is disabling.

The Social Security Administration (SSA) has two methods to determine whether a claimant is disabled. First, they will decide if their condition “meets or exceeds” a condition on the SSA Listing of Impairments. Because this listing does not identify every possible disabling health condition there will be some conditions which are not listed but could still be disabling.

The term used to compare a claimant’s condition to a listed condition is called a comparability test. The goal of this test is to identify a claimant’s condition and symptoms and decide if it is comparable or equal to a listed condition.

How do I prove my condition is as severe as a listed condition?

Almost all disability decisions are based on medical evidence provided by the applicant. To win benefits it is imperative that you have sufficient medical evidence to support your claim of disability and convince the SSA you can no longer work.

The benefit of having a listed condition is that the SSA understands these conditions and accepts that if you have the identified symptoms your condition is severe and automatically disabling. As mentioned above, however, you may still win benefits with a condition which is not listed, but it may be more difficult.

Common types of medical evidence that you will need to prove the severity of your condition includes a diagnosis and prognosis from your doctor, x-rays, MRIs, laboratory tests, and functional reports from your treating sources which outline your mental and physical limitations to work.

Denied for other work after comparability test

If the SSA denies your claim they may state that your condition is not severe and you can do other work. This can mean two things. First, you may simply not have provided enough information to prove your condition was comparable or equal to a listed condition. To overcome this objection you can file an appeal and submit more medical evidence.

It also may mean, however, that your condition really is not severe enough, and you may have the ability to retrain for new work and find a new job that you can work with your current mental or physical limitations.

Failed comparability test and hiring a lawyer

If after the comparability test your claim has been denied, you can consult with a disability lawyer. Some claimants may be able to appeal their denial and win benefits through a medical vocational allowance.

Related Pages

Browse Legal Glossary Alphabetically:

1 | A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | Z |

Social Security Disability Attorneys near Ashburn VA

Mathis & Mathis

Mathis & Mathis Profile Picture
1650 King Street, Suite 650
Alexandria, VA 22314

Term of the Day

Partition by Sale

Partition by sale allows property owners to sell property owned by multiple parties and divide the proceeds from the sale.

Category: Real Estate