Jonathan Ginsberg

Georgia Social Security
Disability Claims

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medical-vocational guidelines
grid rules
how to win a Social Security Disability case

What Are The Social Security Grid Rules and How Do They Work

  Several years ago, the Social Security Administration developed a set of “medical-vocational guidelines” whereby a claimant over the age of 50 could be found disabled quickly if he or she fell into certain categories relating to education and past work.  Because the requirements of these guidelines fit into a table or grid format, they are known as the “grid” rules.

  The grid rules only apply if your disability claim is based on a physical type of injury.  The grids do not apply in mental health cases.  The grids are based on the idea that a worker age 50 and over with a limited education and limited skills would find it very difficult to obtain an entry level unskilled job.

   You can view the Medical Vocational Guidelines at the official Social Security web site.  Here are some common examples:

Grid 201.14 - Claimant limited to sedentary work, age 50-54, high school graduate, no transferrable skills from previous work - DISABLED

Grid 201.15 - Claimant limited to sedentary work, age 50-54, high school graduate, transferrable skills from previous work - NOT DISABLED

Grid 202.13 - Claimant limited to light work, age 50-54, high school graduate, unskilled work background - NOT DISABLED

Grid 202.04 - Claimant limited to light work, age 55-59, high school graduate, unskilled work background - DISABLED

   The grids can be confusing, so don’t be upset if you don’t fully understand how they work.  If you are age 50 or older and your disability is based on physical problems, you should be aware that the grids exist and you should inquire whether they apply to you.

   Click here to read a case study of a recent case I tried in which the grid rules applied and our successful hearing took less than 45 seconds!

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