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  • Christopher Le

Decoding Social Security Disability Claims: The Role of Past Relevant Work

Navigating the intricate terrain of Social Security Disability claims requires a comprehensive understanding of various factors, and one crucial element is the consideration of past relevant work. In this blog post, we delve into the significance of past relevant work in disability cases and how it can impact the determination of eligibility.

What is Past Relevant Work?

Past relevant work refers to the jobs you performed in the 15 years leading up to the onset of your disability. The Social Security Administration (SSA) evaluates your ability to perform this past work in the context of your medical condition. Understanding how past work is assessed is essential for claimants seeking disability benefits.

The Substantial Gainful Activity (SGA) Threshold

One key aspect of evaluating past relevant work is its alignment with the Substantial Gainful Activity (SGA) threshold. If you earned above this threshold during your past work, the SSA may argue that you can still engage in substantial gainful activity, impacting your eligibility for disability benefits. Our legal team has successfully navigated these nuances, presenting compelling arguments to establish the true impact of a client's medical condition on their ability to work.

Transferable Skills and Residual Functional Capacity (RFC)

In assessing past work, the SSA considers your transferable skills—skills acquired from past work that may be applicable to other jobs. Additionally, your Residual Functional Capacity (RFC) is evaluated, reflecting your ability to perform work-related activities despite your impairments. Presenting a thorough and accurate assessment of your RFC is crucial, and our experienced legal team excels in crafting compelling arguments that align with medical evidence.

Demonstrating Inability to Perform Past Work

Successfully obtaining disability benefits often hinges on demonstrating that your medical condition prevents you from performing your past relevant work. Our firm has a proven track record of meticulously examining medical records, consulting with experts, and presenting a comprehensive case to illustrate the extent to which a client's impairments impact their ability to engage in substantial gainful activity.

Legal Expertise in Action

In several cases, our legal team has effectively countered the SSA's assessment of past relevant work. Whether through highlighting the unique demands of a client's previous job or demonstrating the lack of transferable skills, we strategically advocate for our clients, emphasizing the true impact of their impairments on their ability to work.


Past relevant work is a pivotal component in Social Security Disability cases, and understanding its role is essential for claimants seeking benefits. If you find yourself facing challenges in this complex process, [Your Law Firm] is here to provide expert guidance and support. Our commitment to meticulous case preparation and strategic advocacy ensures that your past relevant work is accurately assessed, strengthening your disability claim.

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