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Physical Exertion Levels

Disability and Physical Exertion LevelsDisability and Physical Exertion Levels

Those who are interested in learning more about the Social Security Administration’s disability process should take note of the fact that when Social Security classifies a person’s physical exertion levels, those levels are the same as those that are listed in the Dictionary of Occupational Titles (DOT). However, any Michigan Social Security disability attorney will tell you that the work levels that have been published by the Department of Labor in the DOT in the past have changed since the Social Security regulation was first released.

The work levels that are currently mentioned in the Social Security regulations and correspond with prior editions of the DOT, can be summarized in the following manner:

  • Sedentary jobs: These types of jobs primarily consist of sitting, and walking and standing are only occasionally required.
  • Light jobs: Whenever walking or standing are involved to a more substantial degree, the job will be classified as “light,” even when the amount of weight that is required to be lifted is insignificant. A Michigan Social Security disability attorney will also tell you that jobs that involve sitting the majority of the time with a small degree of pushing and pulling will also be deemed to be light.

The 1991 revised edition of the DOT contains different definitions with respect to the exertional levels, and those definitions take into account the fact that constant lifting will increase the exertional level. These new and improved definitions might prove to be helpful in cases where a person’s past relevant work called for regular lifting.

To be more specific, the 1991 revision has an additional notation on the definition of light work, which says that even though the requirements for the amount of weight lifted might be insignificant, a job should be rated as light: (a) whenever it calls for a person to do a substantial amount of walking or standing; or (b) if the person is sitting for the majority of the time, but the job entails the pushing and or pulling of arm or leg controls; and/or (c) the individual works at a production rate pace that involves regular pushing and/or pulling of materials, even in cases where the weight of those materials is insignificant.

If you have further questions about the Social Security Administration’s exertion levels, and you need a Michigan Social Security disability attorney, please call J.B. Bieske and Jennifer Alfonsi, Attorneys at Law, at (800) 331-3530 for a free consultation.

J.B. Bieske & Jennifer Alfonsi, Attorneys at Law

19991 Hall Road, Suite 202
Macomb, MI 48044
Phone: 586-977-8100
Fax: 586-977-8444

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