To be considered permanently and totally disabled, the individual must require the
attendance and/or supervision of another person on a daily and continuing basis but
not necessarily on a full time basis, in order to perform one or more of the essential
personal activities of daily living, namely personal hygiene (bathing, shaving, hair
care, brushing of teeth, application of dressing, help with appliances), eating, dressing,
toilet functioning, ambulating, communication and/or administering of medications
prescribed on a continuing basis. There must be a demonstrated relationship between
these and the disability.
Any person whose activities are so restricted that he is confined to bed, chair or
wheelchair, or who requires considerable assistance in locomotion from others may
be in need of help from another in essential activities of daily living.
Disability may exist from birth or be acquired during the lifetime of the individual.
Impairments may exist singly or in combination. They may be obvious or they may be
such that they can be revealed only by medical examination. The concepts of “permanent” and “total” should be evaluated separately in determining eligibility.
Permanence does not rule out the possibility of rehabilitation, or even recovery from
the disability. The discovery of new drugs, surgical procedures and other advances
in medical treatment may at some future time change a “permanent” situation. It is, therefore, to be defined in a practical manner rather than in an
absolute sense. The term is not used in the sense of “everlasting” or “unchangeable” but in the sense of continuing as distinct from “temporary or transient.”
The terms “substantially precludes,” as used in the definition of total disability, relates to the extent to which an
individual's permanent impairment has left him able to engage in the activities necessary
to carry on specified responsibilities, such as those related to employment or homemaking.
If an individual is able to engage in such activities well enough and with sufficient
regularity to receive regular payment for his activity on a continuing basis, he is
not precluded from engaging in “useful occupations” and cannot be found to be permanently and totally disabled.