An individual may receive disability if he cannot work as before the disability, and the disability lasts at least a year or may result in death, says the Social Security Administration. Another requirement for benefits is that the applicant cannot adjust to other work due to his medical condition.
In order to qualify for disability benefits, the Social Security Administration uses a five-question process, says the SSA. Questions cover if the applicant is working, if the condition is severe, if the condition is found in the list of conditions that the SSA considers disabling, if the applicant can do the work he previously did, and if the applicant can do any other type of work.
If the applicant is working and earning more than the monthly allotment, they usually are not considered disabled. The condition must interfere with work-related tasks in order for the claim to be considered, says the SSA, which has a list of medical conditions that are so severe they automatically determine the applicant disabled. If the condition is not on the list, SSA makes their own determination. The condition must somehow interfere with the work the applicant previously did or can do, hindering his ability to make a wage, according to the SSA.