Friday, May 29, 2015
What kind of evidence do I need to prove I am disabled to Social Security?
Let's start with the simple stuff. YOU NEED MEDICAL EVIDENCE. No matter how compelling your story is about why you can't work, you must have medical evidence to support your claim. I have seen Judges who I honestly believe thought the person applying for disability (the claimant) was disabled but denied the claim because there was not enough medical evidence.
The Social Security Administration likes detailed information about your medical examinations by your doctors and the medical testing that has been done on you. SSA LOVES MEDICAL TESTING. The reason they love medical testing is because that way they don't have to believe your doctor or you about your medical condition. They are obsessed with the idea that you or your doctor is exaggerating your condition to get benefits. SSA uses doctors under contract to them or the state agency (DDS) which they contract with in claims for disability benefits. SSA or DDS will send you out for a medical exam if there is not enough medical evidence in your records that they obtain. Generally, these exams are a joke. They are done by doctors on a contract with them and the doctors know that SSA is looking for evidence that you are NOT disabled in order to deny your claim. I doubt the doctor will touch your body during the exam other than to give you a what is know as a straight leg raising test in which the doctor raising your extended leg to determine if and what what level that irritates a nerve in you low back. Most if not all of the information will be collected by a nurse or tech. I am telling you this because if you expect that this exam is going to make up for the lack of evidence in your file you are sadly kidding yourself.
With the expanded Medicaid from Obamacare more people now have "some" access to medical care that did not have that before. Use the available resources because if you are disabled you probably need some level of medical or mental health care on an ongoing basis. If you are not seeing a doctor you have no medical evidence in most cases. When you visit the doctor review with the doctor all of your current medical issues. If the doctor is not documenting your continuing problems SSA is not going to believe that the issues are continuing but rather that they just come and go. Be honest with your doctor. Some people are embarrassed or afraid of going to doctors for fear of what they may find. The doctor is your partner in your healthcare and you need to be brutally honest and direct in discussing these issues. There is nothing that you are going to tell the doctor that they have not heard before.
SSA LOVES SPECIALISTS. We all believe specialists because they concentrate in a particular area of medicine know more about that area of medicine. SSA thinks the same thing. If you are not being seen by specialists in the area of medicine that causes you the most significant element of your disability it makes your proof more difficult. Encourage you primary care doctor to give you referrals to specialists who may be more current or knowledgeable about the particular medical issues that are preventing you from working. Your level of care and your condition may improve.
William Wombacher, your Central Illinois Certified Elder Law Attorney (CELA) and Social Security Disability Specialist. I'll help you! http://www.wombacherlaw.com
Serving Peoria, East Peoria, Peoria Heights, Pekin, Dunlap, Chillicothe, Morton, Washington, Metamora, Canton, Galesburg, Lacon, Henry, Bloomington, Normal and surrounding cites and counties of Peoria, Tazewell, Woodford, Fulton and Knox Counties in Central Illinois.