Doctor’s Statements Regarding Your Disability Claim29 Apr
Marken Law Group, PS, has helped hundreds obtain Social Security Disability and SSI benefits through the Social Security Administration. We have helped people file their initial claim, appeal and denials, representation in front of an administrative law judge, appeals council and federal court representation. Here are a few tips regarding your doctor’s statements for your disability claim.
You have probably read or know that a doctor’s statement can go far towards your disability being approved. In a way, that is correct. A treating physician or mental health provider’s statement can go a long way to obtaining disability benefits through the Social Security Administration. Many people believe a letter from a doctor stating they cannot work is great evidence. It is not. Without objective reasoning as to why one cannot work, it is easily disregarded by the Social Security Administration. If it does not specifically address vocational (work) issues, it will likewise be easily dismissed by the Social Security Administration. In general, a letter from your doctor is a waste of time UNLESS the doctor or mental health counselor lays out in detail what SPECIFICALLY you cannot do, based on your diagnosis. I will give you some helpful and non-helpful examples below.
Social Security disability services, in reviewing your application, will review your medical records and determine what exertion and mental abilities you have and do not have. They will determine how much you can lift and carry in a work day, how long you can sit and stand (along with many others) based upon your medical record. If a doctor simply says “John Doe cant work do to degenerative disc disease,” the Social Security administration will dismiss this easily.
If, however, your doctor states “due to John Doe’s degenerative disc disease, they cannot lift more than 5 pounds and should only stand two hours in a workday,” this will go a lot farther in proving your disability. The doctor, in the second example, is giving specific vocational restrictions based upon his treatment.
Often times, doctors letters are generic as they often do not know what the Social Security Administration is evaluating. The same is true of mental health counselor statements.
For example, “Jane Doe cannot work due to her schizophrenia” will likewise be dismissed by the Social Security Administration. In the alternative, “I have treated Jane Doe weekly for the last 9 months. She has diagnosis of schizophrenia manifested by visual and auditory hallucinations combined with severe depression and anxiety. Her tendency to isolate and self-harm would be work restrictive in any environment due to her fears of being around other people.”
A treating doctor’s opinion can be CRUCIAL in obtaining disability benefits through the Social Security Administration. Marken Law Group, PS, has detailed forms for every major diagnosis that is tailored to what the Social Security Administration is looking for in order to find someone disabled. No Benefits, No Fee. Call today!