Like thousands of other Americans, many people in New York suffer from anxiety disorders every year. Such disorders can prevent the sufferer from fully functioning at work, either temporarily or permanently. If you are struggling with anxiety and having trouble paying the bills, let your New York disability lawyers help ease your fears and explain more about the disability process for anxiety disorders.

What is an anxiety-related disorder?

The term “anxiety disorder” covers a wide range of disorders, including:

  • Generalized anxiety disorder
  • Panic disorder
  • Phobias
  • Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD)
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) 

These disorders are often chronic, and the response can range from feeling “jittery” to intense terror and feelings that you will die. You may have these feelings all of the time, or you may only experience them when exposed to a certain trigger or situation. The causes vary, but may be biological or a response to stress.

How are anxiety disorders evaluated?

Mental disorders, including anxiety-related disorders, are evaluated by the Social Security Administration, first by medical findings and then by an assessment of your functional limitations related to the disorder. It is important to note that despite the medical findings, any impairment to your functioning must be the result of the anxiety disorder as described in the medical findings.

What are the anxiety-related disability criteria?

In general, the Social Security Administration will need medical evidence of at least one of the following symptoms:

  • Generalized persistent anxiety
  • Persistent irrational fear with a desire for avoidant behavior
  • Severe, recurrent panic attacks
  • Recurrent obsessions or compulsions that cause distress
  • Distressing and intrusive recollections of a traumatic event

Along with medical documentation, the Social Security Administration will need evidence of either your complete inability to function by yourself outside of your home or at least two of the following:

  • Marked restriction of your activities of daily living
  • Marked difficulties in your social functioning
  • Marked difficulty maintaining concentration
  • Repeated and extended episodes of decompensation

If you are struggling with an anxiety-related disability in New York, we have answers for you. Contact one of our experienced White Plains disability lawyers today at 866-205-2415 or toll free at 855-614-4351. In the meantime, please enjoy one of our FREE and informative legal books, which will explain more about your New York disability claim or workers’ compensation issues.