What Evidence is Used to Evaluate a Disability Claim?

by Editorial Board on August 13, 2010 · 0 comments

in Winning Disability Benefits,Questions & Answers,Basics of SSD,Medical Evidence

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The most important evidence used to decide your disability benefits claim is medical evidence.  You must be prepared to inform the Social Security Administration (SSA) of all the treatment you have received and all of the doctors you have seen so that it may gather evidence to make a decision in your case.

The medical evidence must be from a valid and reliable source.  That’s not to say that evidence in other forms is not considered.  The SSA also relies on forms with information about your work history, your activities of daily living, and your ability to do physical activities provided by you, a family member, a friend, or even a doctor or counselor you have seen.

Another source of medical evidence that may be used to decide your claim comes from doctors that the SSA sends you to see.  Occasionally, people applying for disability benefits do not have enough medical evidence regarding an alleged physical or mental impairment to determine the severity and consequences of that condition.  As such, you may request that the SSA send you to see a doctor at no cost to you.

In some instances the SSA, in an attempt to fully and fairly decide each claim, will schedule an appointment for you to see a doctor. The doctor will provide the SSA with a report detailing his or her findings.  Those reports are also used to decide your claim.

Another important source of evidence used to decide your claim is medical opinion statements regarding your physical and/or mental abilities to do work.  Your doctor can fill these forms out and you can use them as evidence to help win your benefits.

Post a comment below to share your thoughts on this subject or ask us a question, we encourage you to be part of the Living with a Disability community.

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