Physical Exertion Levels and Your Disability Claim

When a claimant’s prior job required physical exertion, a San Diego Social Security disability attorney must understand the classification of physical exertion levels as defined by the Social Security Administration (SSA) to determine the type of work the SSA is likely to classify the job as. The SSA uses the levels published in the Dictionary of Occupation Titles (DOT) by the Department of Labor.The Social Security regulations, when first published, reflected similar work levels as those published in early versions of the DOT. The regulations defined sedentary jobs as those requiring regular sitting with occasional walking and standing. Light physical work levels described jobs that involve significant walking or standing, even if workers participated in negligible amounts of weight-lifting. Light jobs also included positions through which the workers sit but use their arms or legs to push and pull controls.The revised version of the DOT, published in 1991, changes the physical exertion levels by acknowledging that constant lifting often increases the level of exertion. Your San Diego Social Security disability attorney may need to use the revised DOT definitions if your previous work included constant lifting. The revised DOT sets three standards to define the frequency of a work activity or condition such as lifting: 1) occasionally, which reflects an activity or condition existing for 1/3 or less of the worker’s time; 2) frequently, which describes an activity or condition taking up 1/3 to 2/3 of the worker’s time; and 3) constantly, which includes an activity or condition performed for more than 2/3 of the worker’s time.The revised DOT also establishes an updated definition for “light work.” The worker’s position is light if: 1) the worker walks or stands to a significant degree; 2) the worker sits most of the time but operates arm or leg controls that require pushing or pulling; or 3) the worker must function at a production rate pace while constantly pushing or pulling materials, even if those materials have a negligible weight.The physical exertion level of your former job may affect your claim for Social Security disability benefits. You may wish to discuss the criteria and classification of your work level with San Diego Social Security disability attorney. You may contact us here or via the claim evaluation form to the left.

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Areas Served:

We handle California Social Security disability claims for claimants from San Diego and nearby areas, including these counties and cities:

Counties


Imperial, Orange, Riverside, and San Diego.

Cities

Imperial County: Brawley, Calexico, and El Centro.
Orange County: Anaheim, Buena Park, Costa Mesa, Fountain Valley, Fullerton, Garden Grove, Huntington Beach, Irvine, La Habra, Laguna Niguel, Lake Forest, Mission Viejo, Newport Beach, Orange, Santa Ana, Tustin, Westminster, and Yorba Linda.
Riverside County: Corona, Hemet, Moreno Valley, Palm Desert, Palm Springs, Riverside, and Temecula.
San Diego County: Carlsbad, Chula Vista, El Cajon, Encinitas, Escondido, La Mesa, National City, Oceanside, Poway, Ramona, San Diego, San Marcos, Santee, and Vista.

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