Compassionate Allowances (CAL) are the Social Security Administration’s “way of quickly identifying diseases and other medical conditions that invariably qualify under the Listing of Impairments based on minimal objective medical information.” The Compassionate Allowance program was designed to allow applicants with serious medical conditions to receive their benefits more quickly.

The Compassionate Allowances program fast-tracks disability decisions and is supposed to ensure that if you have one of the most serious disabilities that you will receive their benefit decisions within days instead of months or years.

This program has helped SSA approve “disability benefits for nearly 61,000 people with severe disabilities in the past fiscal year, and nearly 173,000 applications since the program began.”

The Compassionate Allowances initiative identifies claims where the nature of the applicant’s disease or condition clearly meets the statutory standard for disability. With the help of sophisticated new information technology, the agency can quickly identify potential Compassionate Allowances and then quickly make decisions.

Social Security launched the Compassionate Allowances program in 2008 with a list of 50 diseases and conditions. Since then, the list has grown to cover over 200. The conditions include certain cancers, adult brain disorders, a number of rare genetic disorders of children, early-onset Alzheimer’s disease, immune system conditions, and other disorders.

As a New Orleans Social Security disability attorney, I am glad to see additional conditions added to the compassionate allowances list. Hopefully, this will help those in most need of disability benefits get them sooner and with much less delay than going through the entire disability process, which can take months (in the best cases) to years (in the worst cases).

If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with one of these conditions, you may not need a disability lawyer to help you get the benefits you need and paid for throughout your life. But if you have questions or concerns, you should speak with an attorney familiar with Social Security Disability.

A full list of allowances can be found at Hopefully, if you have one of these conditions, you will not need a Social Security disability attorney to help get your case approved. If you should need assistance, call Loyd Bourgeois for a free case evaluation at 985-240-9773.

Loyd J. Bourgeois
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Accident, injury, and disability attorney serving Luling, Metairie, New Orleans, and South Louisiana