Everyday People Matter

Low Vision and Social Security Disability Benefits

On Behalf of | Feb 25, 2021 | Low Vision

Living without vision can be challenging.  This February, safety groups are drawing attention to low vision and conditions like glaucoma that can cause near-blindness.

Many people who suffer from vision problems find that eyeglasses and corrective surgeries can help improve vision and make it easier for them to go about their daily tasks and perform routine activities. These people may also be able to enjoy full employment. However, in some cases, vision is so poor that eyeglasses, medicines and surgeries may not suffice as solutions.   For people who suffer from this degree of low vision being independent and productive can seem impossible.

Low vision for the purpose of Social Security disability benefits approvals means that the person is unable to increase vision through the use of contact lenses, eyeglasses, medicines or surgeries.  It means that vision is so poor that it makes it difficult for the person to perform routine, everyday tasks. These persons may not be able to drive independently or read.  They may not be able to go to work and earn a living. Low vision may not mean that the person is living in complete blindness, but rather that the vision is poor enough to impede the ability to live a normal life. Some conditions that can cause low vision include glaucoma, diabetes and age- related macular degeneration. Eye injuries can also be a cause of low vision.

The Social Security Administration recognises the immense challenge posed by low vision, and makes it much easier for people who suffer from this condition to recover the Social Security disability benefits.   Under the Compassionate Allowances program, a person with low vision may be eligible for an expedited approval of a disability benefits claim.