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When dementia strikes before one’s retirement years, SSDI can help

On Behalf of | May 7, 2024 | Social Security Disability

Everyone who suffers from dementia conditions (including Alzheimer’s disease) isn’t of retirement age. While these conditions most commonly affect those in their senior years, they can strike younger adults too. In fact, early-onset Alzheimer’s can affect people in their 40s or 50s and sometimes even younger.

Since younger and middle-age adults and their loved ones may not attribute their symptoms to dementia, the condition can be fairly advanced by the time it’s diagnosed. They often write off the symptoms as having too much on their minds or simply as the result of getting older – even if they’re far from elderly. By the time they see a doctor and get a diagnosis, they’re probably already having difficulty doing their job – whatever it is.

If this is what has happened to you, the thought of having to stop working when you thought you had many years left to provide for yourself and your family can be extremely frightening. Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) can make a big difference to your financial well-being.

What is the CAL initiative?

While getting approved for SSDI is often a long and difficult process, the Social Security Administration (SSA) expedites it for people who have an irreversible condition that clearly prevents them from earning a living. It’s called the Compassionate Allowances (CAL) initiative.

In addition to Alzheimer’s disease, the CAL initiative can be used for those suffering from other conditions involving dementia. These include:

  • Adult-onset Huntington disease
  • Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD)
  • Frontotemporal dementia (FTD)
  • Lewy body dementia
  • Primary progressive aphasia (PPA)
  • Progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP)

While the CAL initiative is an expedited process, that doesn’t mean that all applications are easily approved. It’s critical not just to complete the application correctly and thoroughly, but to provide the necessary evidence regarding your diagnosis, your prognosis and how the condition affects your ability to work.

By providing an accurate, complete and persuasive initial application, you can improve your chances of getting approved the first time around and without an undue wait time. That’s why it’s often worthwhile to have experienced legal guidance. This can help you get the benefits you need as soon as possible.