If you have recently filed for Social Security disability because you were unable to work at your job, you may be notified by the Social Security Administration (SSA) of the need for a consultative medical exam. The SSA uses several methods to determine if you have a qualified medical condition, and if so, the extent of the condition. Not having regular or recent treatment for your medical condition will often trigger this request from the SSA. Read on for more information about this exam and what it means for your ability to collect
Why must I complete this exam?
Normally, the SSA only requests that a claimant to undergo this exam if they have submitted incomplete or non-existent medical records. The need to seek treatment, keep your appointments and submit complete medical records that clearly show how your medical condition has affected your ability to work cannot be overstated. Oftentimes, this exam is the final step in your evaluation process.
What happens at this exam?
You are assigned a doctor for this exam. While the doctor does not actually work for the SSA, they are paid by the SSA through a contracting agreement. There is no charge to you for this exam and you should understand that you will not receive any medical treatment during or as a result of this exam.
Just like most medical appointments, the exam will begin with a check of your vital signs, such as heart rate, weight, temperature, and blood pressure. Sometimes the doctor will order lab tests and other diagnostic tests such as imaging tests (x-rays, MRI, CAT scans, ultrasound). The doctor will conduct an interview with you and examine you, paying close attention to the affected body part. You can expect your exam to be brief, sometimes only a few minutes.
What happens after the exam?
The medical exam results must be submitted within 10 business days, but this deadline may be missed by busy doctors. Sometimes delays occur due to inconclusive results or lab work backlogs. Unfortunately, you must undergo the exam in order to move forward in the claims process, where being denied is a necessary step before you can request an appeal hearing. It is not unusual for the SSA to approve a disability claim on the initial application, so don't be deterred from appealing your claim and moving forward in the process. Contract a Social Security law firm, such as Horn & Kelley, PC Attorneys at Law, once your claim has been denied for assistance during the appeal process. You can get the benefits you need and deserve if you don't give up.
3 December 2015
Like many people, I once found learning about law very intimidating. My brother went to law school and I remember glancing through a few of his books and wondering if I was actually reading English due to all of the legal jargon in them! However, when I ended up in a sticky legal situation due to accidentally breaking a small law I didn't know existed, I realized that I needed to learn more about the law, so I could make sure to follow it precisely in the future. My brother helped to break down some complicated legal concepts to me, and I have since been studying up online. I want to post what I have learned and continue to learn about law in the future on my new blog, so my knowledge cannot only help myself, but also help others!