When applying for disability benefits, the goal of the Social Security Administration (SSA) is to determine whether you really need financial assistance. In some cases, the medical evidence you provided will not be enough. This is when an independent medical examination might be requested for additional information. Talk to a Pennsylvania individual disability insurance lawyer to learn more.
The SSA may not always be the one who orders an independent medical examination. Each state has a Disability Determination Services (DDS) office that takes over once a disability claim is submitted to the SSA. An independent medical examination for disability benefits might be ordered when:
· A special medical examination is needed
· Specific medical tests are required
· Additional medical information is missing
One of the most common reasons the DDS requests an independent medical exam is a lack of information in your disability benefits application. The DDS may not be able to verify your need for disability benefits without this information. Not cooperating with the medical examination may lead to denied disability benefits as a result.
The good news is the SSA will usually cover the costs of traveling for the medical exam. They will also usually pay for the medical exam itself. If you prefer your own doctor to conduct the medical exam, then feel free to request a change. However, the change may not be guaranteed.
Be sure to inform the DDS when you cannot make it to the medical exam. If not, the DDS may assume that you are refusing to cooperate. The SSA will go based on the current information in your disability claim and may reject your application. Try contacting a Pennsylvania disability lawyer if you have any questions or concerns about this.
You might be wondering what to expect at an independent medical exam ordered by the DDS. A disability benefits consultative medical exam like this involves various medical tests depending on the type of disability. Certain disabilities require certain types of medical tests to confirm the diagnosis and symptoms.
Some disabilities only require a basic physical examination, while other disabilities require specific medical tests. Depending on the type of disability you are filing for, your medical exam may involve the following:
· Lab tests
· Imagery tests
· Evaluations conducted by a specialist
A consultative examination report will be generated from your medical exam. This report is expected to contain additional information about your disability. What this usually includes is medical evidence, medical history, and the conclusions of the examination.
The report must be consistent and serve to fill in missing information from the disability benefits application. All symptoms must be considered, along with their effects on daily functioning. One of the goals is to determine how these effects impact work performance.
Going through the disability benefits application process can be stressful. You can ask a Pennsylvania disability attorney about what your legal options are. All you have to do is contact Edelstein, Martin & Nelson today at (800) 300-0909 for a consultation about your disability claim. Our legal team is ready to help you take steps to strengthen your chances of receiving disability benefits.