Important Tips for Your Social Security Medical Exam
Applying for Social Security disability benefits can be a long process, especially if you find out you need to undergo a medical exam. This procedure, also known as a consultative exam, evaluates your disability and ability to work if there is not enough information present in your case file.
If you’ve stalled in your SSD benefits process and you’re not quite sure what comes next, let The Dansby Law Firm help. Give us a call at 334-834-7001 to schedule a consultation now.
Know What to Expect from the Doctor
The doctor who does your consultative exam is not a Social Security doctor. Rather, they are a doctor who contracts with the SSA to provide these exams. Don’t expect the same level of care and attention you get from your primary care provider or specialists. It’s common to hear that CE doctors are brusque, in a rush, and not necessarily very concerned with the outcome of your claim. Knowing that, be prepared to present your evidence and tell them what they need to know.
Be Prepared for a Wide Range of Tests
What actually occurs during your consultative exam depends largely on the type of disability you have and how much evidence the doctor is looking for. You could be in your appointment for ten minutes and get no more than an X-ray, or you could be in your appointment for an hour and go through a whole litany of diagnostic tests. Be prepared for either option.
Do Whatever You Must to Make Your Appointment
Emergencies happen but make it to your consultative exam if at all possible and be on time. If you absolutely cannot attend the appointment, call well in advance to cancel it. If you no-call no-show, the SSA could proceed with your application without the necessary medical information. This is likely to lead to a denial and an unnecessary delay for you.
Collect Your Most Important Information
As noted earlier, you may not get a lot of time with the doctor doing your exam. To make the most of your time, make a list of bullet points covering the most important things about your disability. Include when it began, how often it keeps you out of work, and your pain level. You may also want to include specific tests you’ve had done and their results.
…and All of Your Medical Records
While you may not have much time during your appointment, it is still helpful to bring your medical records with you. The doctor may be willing to look through them to get a better understanding of your disability. They may also use them to determine which tests they want to run.
Going into your appointment, you truly have no way of knowing how much time the doctor is willing to spend on your claim or how much information they will want, so it’s crucial to be ready for any scenario.
Be Ready to Hire an Attorney
If you do not already have a disability attorney handling your SSD application, this is a great time to find a lawyer you can trust to handle your case. The SSA uses a ton of different information to make their decisions, and in many cases, their decision to deny an applicant is simply the result of not enough evidence. By hiring a disability attorney right away, you can submit the most comprehensive application possible and avoid having your application denied by default.
Your attorney can help you with gathering and sorting your medical reports, determining what kind of documentation you may need to provide, and filling in weak spots in your application. Should your application get denied, your lawyer will then help you navigate the appeals process. By meeting the SSA’s strict deadlines and providing additional information, you can fight for the benefits you deserve.
Contact The Dansby Law Firm to Prepare Your Disability Claim
The team at The Dansby Law Firm focuses exclusively on disability cases. This allows us to stay abreast of new developments, changes in the SSA’s requirements, and other news that may make a difference in your claim. If you’re ready to start your application or fight a denial, let’s talk. Give us a call at 334-834-7001 or contact us online to get started.