3 Ways Social Security Defines ‘Work’

3 Ways Social Security Defines ‘Work’

5 forms of Work

There are five levels of work that the Social Security Administration uses to judge whether an individual can perform the range of sedentary, light, medium, heavy or very heavy work. This judgment is based on an exertional point of view – exertion being the effort needed to complete a given task. Below we will break down three of these five forms of work that are most common.

Sedentary Work

Sedentary work is work that involves lifting no more than 10 pounds at once. It can occasionally involve carrying or lifting items such as ledgers, small tools and docket files. While a sedentary job is defined as one that involves a lot of sitting, it also involves some walking and standing to carry out job duties. Usually, this involves standing or walking for up to two hours throughout an eight-hour work day and sitting for six hours of an eight-hour work day.

Light Work

Light work jobs require frequent lifting or carrying objects that weigh 10 pounds and occasionally lifting or carrying objects that weigh up to 20 pounds. Jobs that fall into this category require a bit more standing and walking than sedentary jobs, usually six hours of standing and/or walking.

While performing a job in this category, one might be able to sit for small increments between walking and standing with a total of no more than two hours of sitting in an eight-hour work day. An example of a job that falls into this category would be a cashier, bagger or machine operator.

Medium Work

Jobs in this category require the ability to lift 25 pounds frequently and no more than 50 pounds occasionally. Similar to the requirements of light work, one would have to be able to stand or walk for six hours out of the eight-hour workday and sitting up to two hours of an eight-hour workday. The use of hands is necessary, though the use of fingers directly for fine activities is not. In a medium-level job, there is typically more stooping involved due to the frequent moving of objects. They recommend decent flexibility of knees and torso for the level of activity required for jobs in this category. Some examples are construction workers, plumbers or electricians.

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Being accurate in describing your past work is vital to the success of your claim, especially if you are age 50 or older. It’s one of the many reasons why so many people turn to Jan Dils, Attorneys at Law. If you’d like to know more about what our firm can do for you, call us today at 877-526-3457 for a free consultation. If you’d rather talk at a later time, fill out this form so our team can contact you at a time that is best for you.

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Jan Dils, Attorneys at Law

Jan Dils, Attorneys at Law