Can You Receive SSD Benefits for Cancer?

Oncology Attorney | Cancer Lawyer | Kocian Law

If you have cancer, you may be eligible for disability benefits from the Social Security Administration (SSA).

The Kocian Law Group can help you prosecute your claim for disability benefits. We will build a strong case and prepare you thoroughly for all meetings and hearings.


Tasks the Kocian Law Group will tackle on your behalf include:

  • build a theme for your case and gather all of the medical evidence available to support your claim
  • submit all of the necessary documents to illustrate how your symptoms are consistent with the requirements for benefits
  • work closely with the medical experts to obtain detailed medical statements which describe your need for disability benefits.

The SSA considers several factors when determining whether a cancer patient qualifies for Social Security disability benefits. Major points of consideration include:

  • the origin and source of the cancer
  • the nature, extent, and progression of the disorder
  • the length, frequency, and response to treatment rendered to date
  • the side effects of the treatment, whether it is surgical excision, radiation, chemotherapy, or stem cell transplantation.

In deciding a claim for Social Security disability, the SSA will review:

  • the medications and dosages prescribed
  • how often the medications are used or administered
  • plans for the future management of the disease
  • the nature and extent of any operations
  • the schedule of radiation therapy modalities
  • side effects of therapy, including gastrointestinal complications, loss of strength, and neurological symptoms

In order to be eligible for Social Security disability benefits, you must be unable to engage in any substantial gainful activity (work) for a period of at least 12 consecutive months.

When it comes to cancer disorders, the SSA generally considers cancer to cause disability until three years after remission sets in. After three years of total remission, cancer may no longer qualify a patient for disability benefits unless a continued inability to work exists.

The SSA reviews medical documentation regarding the specific type, extent, and location of any tumors. The SSA also reviews all reports related to surgical procedures, including biopsies, aspirations, and related laboratory findings. The SSA also evaluates the results of any therapy administered, weighing whether the patient is improving or is likely to decline.

Because therapies and the disease’s response to them vary among patients, each cancer case is considered individually for SSD benefits. Patients who do not respond to treatment or who suffer a relapse are more likely to meet the criteria for disability benefits.