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Disability for Hearing Loss

How to Determine Disability for Hearing Loss?

People who have extreme hearing loss can qualify for Social Security Disability Benefits. The Social Security Administration (SSA) is the agency that makes determinations about whether your disability qualifies you for benefits. 

Disability-for-Hearing-Loss The SSA will evaluate your claim by considering whether your disability is profound. They will review whether the disability is preventing you from engaging in any kind of work. If your disability is not permitting you to do any work then you will be considered eligible for the disability benefits.

However, when your application gets denied in the first instance do not get discouraged. This is because your hearing loss disability will be granted benefits when you show evidence. 

The standard of proof requires that your disability is reducing your potential to do work. This is a medical-vocational allowance that specifies if you are unable to do any job due to the extreme disability by considering various factors, including:

  • Age
  • Education
  • Experience

In this case, the person will be granted the Social Security Disability Benefits. Mild to moderate hearing threshold ranges will not qualify you for the benefits.

Is Hearing Loss A Disability?

Hearing loss is a disability common in older populations. Hearing loss might harm their capability to enjoy life while interacting with others. The adults who are facing this problem may feel isolated and refrain from socialising. However, there are some rights for people suffering from hearing disabilities as specified under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). 

According to the  National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NICHD), the 60 to 69 age group suffers from maximum hearing loss. When your mental or physical ailment is limiting the capability to perform any life activities then that is a disability under ADA. In the United States, 15% of adults, which is nearly 37.5 million, experience trouble in hearing.

Common Causes of Deafness or Hearing Loss

People who have a hearing threshold of 20dB in both ears are considered to be suffering from hearing loss. The hearing problem can range from mild to moderate and from severe to extreme. Sometimes, it may affect one ear and, in some cases, it may lay an impact on both the ears. 

People who have symptoms from mild to severe are called hard of hearing. These people try to communicate by using hearing aids or other assistive devices or cochlear implants. People who have extreme hearing loss are considered to be deaf. These kinds of people use sign language to convey anything.

Some of the common causes of hearing loss are:

  • Genetic factors (hereditary or non-hereditary)Intrauterine infections 
  • Deficiency of oxygen during the time of birth
  • Severe jaundice at the time of birth
  • Low birth weight
  • Migraine
  • PTSD
  • Age-related sensorineural degeneration
  • Otosclerosis
  • Sudden sensorineural hearing loss
  • Head trauma
  • Progressive genetic hearing loss
  • Sleep Apnea

How to Get A VA Disability for Hearing Loss?

Veterans suffer from hearing loss or tinnitus. Tinnitus refers to a condition in which you tend to hear a ringing sound in the ears. There is compensation available for a service-connected disability for hearing loss. 

If you have to qualify for the direct service connection disability benefits, then you need to prove that your disability is due to military duty. You need to prove disability by:

  • Showing present diagnosis of hearing ailment
  • Evidence that caused disability while working 
  • A medical opinion that has to associate hearing loss with your service. 

Hearing impairment has also been mentioned in the VA Schedule of Ratings Disabilities. Section 4.87 with diagnostic codes from 6200 to 6260 that mentions common hearing loss. Some disabilities can happen due to hearing problems or tinnitus such as:

  • Cancer
  • Peripheral Vestibular disorder
  • Loss of one or both ears 
  • Punched eardrum

There are some hearing tests that veterans may have to go through. This is to prove that they have a profound disability. Veterans’ ears may be exposed to loud sounds such as gunfire or airplane engines. This might have affected their hearing ability. 

A licensed audiologist confirms the disability by performing two fundamental tests. The tests are named as Maryland CNC test and pure tone audiometric test. Maryland CNC measures the ability to recognize speech. The Pure Tone audiometric test measures the level of hearing impairment.

Hearing Loss Disability Tax Credit

There are different listings mentioned in the blue book of hearing impairment. Listing 2.10 is applicable for those who have not acknowledged the cochlear implant. This listing can be met when:

  • Your score on speech discrimination tests is either 40% or even worse than that.
  • Your hearing threshold of ear conduction is greater than 89 decibels. The average hearing threshold for bone conduction is greater than 60 decibels.

Listing 2.11 is applicable for those who have a cochlear implant. According to this listing, you must be disabled for more than 1 year. After a treatment of 12 months, the person is still experiencing a recognition score of less than 60% then the requirements of the listing will be met. 

The hearing loss disability tax credit depends largely on the medical and dental expenses for a particular year. Suppose, you want the help of hearing aids that can cost nearly $6,000. Depending upon the applicable insurance policy, hearing aids may not be covered. In such cases, the person may benefit from itemizing. 

Additionally, there are some deductions made for hearing impairment. The deductions that are permitted include expenses spent on diagnosis and other medical treatment.

The overall claims process of getting disability benefits is complicated. An experienced and knowledgeable attorney can help make this process easier. Our Disability Lawyers in Ohio will guide you in the right way and help pursue the benefits you may be able to claim.

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