Win Your Social Security Disability With Doctor Reports
I always recommend submitting a doctor's letter with your Social Security Disability claim, but for many claimants, doing so makes little difference. Why? Oftentimes, the letters that doctors submit to Social Security on their patients' behalf are too short and lack sufficient detail. A doctor's letter can help you win your social security disability case, but only if it's detailed, objective, and describes specifically how your condition affects your ability to perform work-related functions. First things first, make sure that your name and Social Security number are clearly marked on the letter from your doctor. After all, if your identity cannot be determined by looking at the letter, it won't make it into your file. Also, a statement from your doctor that says, “My patient is disabled and unable to work,” is virtually useless. Rather than simply saying that a patient is disabled and unable to work, a doctor must describe specifically why that is so. Information that the Social Security Administration (SSA) looks for in a doctor's evaluation include how well a patient performs the following work-related functions: Climbing Kneeling Balancing Bending Stooping Crawling Fingering Handling Feeling Hearing Speaking Carrying Lifting Standing Walking Sitting In addition, your doctor should describe your strength levels, range of motion in all joints, grip strength, and reflexes. Furthermore, your doctor should explain how your condition's symptoms impact your ability to perform work-related functions and which activities you are unable to perform altogether. In sum, your doctor's narrative letter should detail your symptoms, the treatments you've received, and your prognosis. Documents that your doctor can include with his/her letter to further your case include laboratory or other test results, clinical observations, and statements of reported symptoms or impairment. Your doctor may be reluctant to write such a detailed letter, but that is exactly what the SSA wants to see. So, if you want to increase your chances of winning your Social Security Disability claim, strive to obtain a statement like this from your doctor. Disability determination specialists do not possess the same expertise as medical professionals, so they give significant weight to the opinions of doctors who are directly involved with treating a claimant's condition. Need assistance applying for Social Security Disability benefits and explaining to your doctor how he can write a letter that will help your disability case? Feel free to contact us today for a free evaluation.