Can You Get Long Term Disability In Canada If You Are Legally Blind?

A Canadian that can show by means of a doctor’s report that he or she is legally blind should be able to get long term disability benefits. Still, a resident with a vision impairment might want to know whether or not his or her condition puts that particular resident in the same status as someone that is legally blind.

What symptoms that might be found in someone with a vision impairment would signal that the same person is legally blind?

He or she has eyesight that is narrow or extremely blurry. On testing, his or her vision falls below 20/200, even when wearing either glasses or contact lenses. That means that the vision impairment keeps the eyes from seeing anything that is more than 6 meters in front of the impaired and tested patient.

Someone with poor peripheral vision might be declared legally blind. Testing would have to show that the same person’s eyes fail to see anything that is more than 20 degrees to the side.

The Canadian law declares the best eye as the one that counts, in an assessment of the status of someone with a vision impairment. That means that someone that is blind in only one eye cannot be declared blind, according to the legal definition for that particular condition. That is why it is important that you consult with Personal Injury Lawyers in Sault Ste Marie.

What can you do if you have a vision impairment, but you are not blind, and yet, your poor vision limits your ability to work?

Canadian law gives you the right to ask your employer to make an accommodation, one that makes it easier for you to complete your assigned tasks. Be sure to get documentation of your vision problem from an eye doctor, before talking with your employer about such an accommodation.

What sorts of vision impairments could create a need for an accommodation at work?

An employee that was color blind might need such an accommodation. For instance, someone working at a print shop would need help with using pH papers, in order to test the pH of the paper to which the printer’s ink would be applied. Any employee with cataracts, glaucoma or macular degeneration would have reason for requesting some type of accommodation. Of course, that accommodation could not increase the level of risk that was placed on other employees, or on any customers.

For instance, suppose that someone working in a gym had macular degeneration. If his or her eyesight started to deteriorate, it might be difficult for the employer to design an accommodation that would not put others at risk. That would certainly be the case, if the employee with the vision problem had been working with weights, or with a similar piece of heavy equipment.