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for the Blind

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disability and driving

I am legally blind without correction... I'm not sure what my vision is with the correction but I have always been told I couldn't drive. I am 31 years old.
My bad eye is really bad, shapes and colours, can't read the biggest letter on the chart even with correction, it wanders and gives me double vision when I look in one place.
So I recently went to a new eye doctor. In about ten minutes the Dr. Told me that I should be able to drive maybe just during the day but alot of the tests I was used to, weren't performed...
Anyhow, assuming that she is correct and I have my doubts... but assuming she is right (she is waiting to receive my old files) and I become a day time driver, do I still qualify for disability?

I am optimistic to have the opportunity to drive, it's a whole new world that has been mentioned to me but I guess it's fair to say I am fearful also.

Thank you

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Re:disability and driving

If you have a large field loss, that is an issue that states do not allow persons to have a license. But, they do not test your field of vision.

I can't figure out how to post my own message so.....I have hemianopsia from a brain tumor surgery in 2004. In Pennsylvania I am told that I am not allowed to drive. My vision loss is to the right. I have "exactly" 90 of vision. But then when I look at SS and other laws, I am not considered "visually impaired" as their field says 20 degrees or AM I or am I not visually impaired? The only reason I am asking is because I would like to go back to work but to do so I need transportation and the regular buses don't go tot places for me to work. I am a physical therapist with mostly pediatric experience and some rehab for adults experience.

Re:disability and driving

The answer is maybe. I know of a monoscope that can be put into a pair of glasses, one for each lens, you can use them like bifocals, and this might work. I went to a low vision specialist who told me about them. It depends mostly on your DMV/DPS. Generally speaking, if you are correctable only to the point where you are still legally blind then it is unlikely. .

Re:disability and driving

I would look at your state's requirements, each one is different. 41 states have Low Vision Driver's licenses as well, but most require special training and testing.

The definition of legal blindness is "with" correction. I tis a common mistake to state that you are legally blind without correction, but that is contrary to the definition.

Was your doctor a low vison specialist?

If you are unsure, just seek a second opinion.

If you have a large field loss, that is an issue that states do not allow persons to have a license. But, they do not test your field of vision.

I would suggest you find out your state's requirements and seek a second opinion if you are unsure.

I hope it works out to your liking!

Joe S.
AFB Staff

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