Why Social Security Wants to Know Your Waist Size

A lot of people don't like to talk about their weight. This includes in front of strangers. However, if you have an appeal hearing in front of a Social Security Administrative Law Judge they will definitely ask your height and weight. They do this because under the law if you are classified as obese they must take that into consideration when determining what physical functions you can and cannot do and for how long you can or can not do them. In addition, some conditions, especially those involving musculoskeletal/bone/joint/muscle and nerve/neurological issues may be adversely affected. Why the waist size though? Well for certain conditions more fat around the waist can be more unhealthy than in other places in your body. The Judge also might ask if your wait has fluctuated at all since you stopped working. Again this might mean different things for different conditions. Don't be embarrassed if they ask these questions though. The judge, court reporter, vocational expert, and your attorney could care less on a personal basis what you weigh. Legally though the Judge is just doing their job to take all of many many different relevant facts and circumstances into consideration when determining whether or not you meet Social Security's definition of disabled.

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