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that have disabilities or special needs.
There is a five-step process to establish your disability, which is generally listed below. If it is determined that a disability does not exist at any step in the process, the analysis end and the lack of disability is established.
Step 1: Are you currently earning "Substantial Gainful Activity"? So, are you working and if so, are you earning a wage? The amounts of earning change each year, however, if you are earning the base amount required, you are not disabled.
Step 2: Do you have a Medically Determinable Severe Impairment (MDI)?
An MDI is a physical or mental impairment resulting from an anatomical, physiological, or psychological abnormality that is:
• Shown by medically acceptable clinical laboratory or diagnostic techniques
• Diagnosed by an acceptable medical source
If you don't, then you are not disabled.
Step 3: Does the impairment meet the requirements of an impairment listed in "The Listings"? "The Listings" is a document that lists all of the eligible impairments under the SSA. If you do not have an eligible impairment, you are not disabled.
Step 4: Can you still perform your job? As you actually performed it; or as the job is generally performed in the national economy? If you can perform the job, then you are not disabled.
Step 5: Can you perform any other work that exists in significant numbers in the national economy? If you can perform other work, then you are not disabled.
The steps described above are vague, over-generalizations of the law, however, I have listed them here as a way to further all visitors knowledge of the process.