Depression as a Disability

Depression is a common disability that individuals claim when filing for Social Security Disability Benefits. It is important to be aware of the difficulty of being found disabled on this condition alone.

The Social Security Administration (SSA) essentially provides two avenues for an individual to be considered disabled based on depression. First, the claimant can meet the listing for depression, which is analyzed under the SSA listing 12.04 Affective Disorders. The listing sets out the criteria that the claimant must meet in order for a person to be disabled. However, this is a difficult standard to meet. Second, the SSA could determine that your mental disability has made you incapable of doing unskilled work. Claimants should understand that there are numerous unskilled jobs in the economy and the SSA needs to determine that you cannot do any of those positions on a full time basis.

In considering whether depression has made the claimant disabled, the SSA will look at the claimant

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