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What Happens At A Disability Exam

Seven tips for a Social Security disability medical exam

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Social Security Consultative Exams

The Social Security Disability Exam is actually called a CE, or consultative exam. If you are scheduled for a CE, it will fall into one of three types: physical, mental, or testing.

Physical Exams

A physical consultative exam is not unlike a physical. The doctor will check your vitals, your reflexes, your strength, and if you have a neurological or spinal issue may check your gait or walking pattern. A physical CE is typically short, under 15 minutes. The doctor may ask you questions based on a sampling of the medical evidence sent to them by the disability examiner who scheduled the exam. A physical CE is usually scheduled for one purpose, which is to get recent medical evidence into the file so a decision can be made on the claim. This happens if you have not been to a doctor in at least 90 days.

Mental Exams


Testing can include the various types of mental testing that we just mentioned. But it can also include an echocardiogram for your heart, or a breathing test if you respiratory problems . It can also include a CBC or a neurological examination, or visual testing, or audiometry if you have hearing loss.

Why does Social Security send people to disability exams?

Before an examiner can close a case, he or she must have recent medical information regarding your disability .

Mental Disability Exams

Frequently Asked Questions About The Consultative Exam

When you apply for SSI or SSDI benefits, your application should include as much medical information about your condition and relevant symptoms as possible. If a disability applicant lacks this information, theres a good chance theyll need another medical examination to give the SSA ample information to approve or deny a case lawfully.

The following answers to these frequently asked questions should help you understand more about the consultative exam and whats involved:

If You Plan To Stay For More Than 6 Months

You need a medical exam if at least one of these applies to you:

If you need a medical exam, the visa office will tell you what to do next.

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What If The Physician Doesn’t Properly Record My Conditions

This is tricky. Without proof of misconduct, it’ll be difficult to have the VA approve a new exam. If there isn’t enough information recorded to rate the condition, the VA will send the claim back to gather the additional information needed. If the information recorded is enough to rate it, but is just incorrect, then that could negatively affect your ratings. The key to combat this is to submit ample outside evidence that has enough of the correct information about your condition that it negates the incorrect information on the single C& P Exam. With enough outside correct evidence, the VA could overlook the C& P Exam and still rate your condition correctly.

What Happens After Your C& p Exam

Disability Insurance Physical Exam

Alright, now that youve had your C& P Exam, the VA then reviews all the evidence in the veterans C-File, and eventually assign a VA disability rating based on the available evidence. The timeframe for this is impossible to predict with certainty since were dealing with the VAs timetables and we all know theyve been working through a backlog of over 100,000+ claims.

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Helpful Tips To Consider

You need to understand that the doctor you are seeing will be evaluating the exact extent of your condition. If you feel that he or she has not gathered enough evidence during your visit, do not be afraid to speak up. This does not mean you should be rude to the doctor, but you should explain that you feel they have not asked some important questions related to your disability claim.

Above all else, make sure you show up to your Social Security Disability exam on time. If you are late and the doctor decides not to see you or if you miss the exam altogether without good reason, your claim may be denied benefits.

Do Not Miss Your Appointment

The SSA scheduled and paid for this appointment because they felt they did not have enough information to properly decide your claim for benefits. So, if you are a no show for your CE, the SSA has the option to proceed and decide your claim based on the information they already have, which probably means a denial of your claim. However, if there is a really good explanation for missing the appointment, the SSA may reschedule the exam for you, but this will likely delay a determination on your claim for several weeks or months.

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Who Performs The Consultative Exam

The consulting doctor for your consultative exam can be your regular physician if theyre certified to perform the exam and willing to do so. If not, the SSA will order a consultative exam from an independent medical provider. This provider is one that you, the applicant, probably has not already visited, so you must come prepared with information about your condition and medical history.

Also, remember that the Social Security doctor the SSA orders for the exam is not connected to the SSA in any way. Instead, its an independent physician who contracts with the SSA to perform the exam and offer unbiased information about your condition and results.

What Is A Consultative Examination

How to Prepare and Tips for Attending A Disability Insurance Medical Exam (IME)

After you apply for Social Security Disability benefits or Supplemental Security Income benefits, you may receive a notice in the mail. This notice is scheduling you for a Consultative Examination. The SSA usually schedules a Consultative Examination during the first six months of the appeals process. For instance, they will schedule your exam during the initial or reconsideration stage of your case.

Typically, a physical or mental examination with a doctor is scheduled because the SSA feels they need more medical evidence. They will use the medical evidence to decide whether or not you are eligible for disability benefits. If you need more information about your consultative exam, contact Cannon Disability Law.

Under Social Security law, physical and mental impairments can only be found disabling if they are diagnosed by an acceptable medical source. An acceptable medical source is usually a doctor with an M.D. or a Ph.D..

There are some treating providers that the SSA does not consider to be acceptable medical sources. However, the SSA will consider the medical opinion of physician assistants, nurse practitioners, social workers, counselors, and physical therapists.

Therefore, if you are seeing a social worker for mental impairments, submit the records. Or, if you are seeing a physical therapist for back impairments, you should submit those records. Find out more about how to collect and submit your medical records to the SSA here.

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How To Win Your Social Security Disability Claim

This page will help show you how to win a Social Security Disability Insurance . It will also give you tips to win SSI, or Supplemental Security Income. The information contained on this page and throughout this site is extensive. However, if you are committed to maximizing your chance of winning your SSDI and/or SSI claim, keep reading this site.

Watch the videos. Search for questions that have been answered before. I have helped over one thousand people win disability and hope this information helps you too. If you would like me to represent you too, fill out the form below or call for a free case evaluation.

This page provides simple, straight-forward information on winning Social Security Disability or Supplemental Security Income benefits. It summarizes the most important things you can do to win your SSDI or SSI claim.

This page does not provide legal advice. It is not a substitute for hiring an attorney to represent you in your claim. Nor is it a substitute for doing further research into the Social Security disability process. I will attempt, however, to provide you some insider tips while pursuing disability. Again, I will not discuss the law or get into specific procedures here. Instead, I will give five tips on things you can do to help your own disability case.

What Happens When I See A Doctor For A Disability Exam

When you receive notice from the Social Security Administration to appear for your consultative examination , you have made it to another stage in the process of obtaining your Social Security Disability benefits. However, this notice also lets you know that your medical records currently provide insufficient medical evidence allowing the SSA to make a determination about your disability claim.

The Disability Determination Service , funded by the federal government, but operated within each state, including Maryland, assists the SSA in determining disability claim requests. This agency asks you to submit to a CE or follow through with others tests if it fails to find sufficient evidence in your existing medical records to approve your claim, or if that evidence is not current. The cost of the consultative examination is paid for by the SSA.

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Please Answer A Few Questions To Help Us Determine Your Eligibility

When you file a claim or appeal with the Social Security Administration , it is the agency’s job to obtain medical evidence before making a decision on your case. Specifically, your reviewer must contact your treating physicians and try to obtain records if those records are needed in order to make a fair assessment of your level of impairment. If you do not have medical records that provide a clear overview of your disability, or have not been treated by a physician, the SSA can order that you have a consultative examination done.

The SSA may order medical and/or mental examinations. If the SSA requests that you have a CE done to assess your mental impairments, it is the agency’s responsibility to pay for the examination.

Pros Of No Exam Disability Insurance

Immigration Medical Exam Chicago Schaumburg Illinois

The benefits of no exam disability coverage include:

  • The ability to get coverage without completing a medical exam
  • Not having to give blood
  • The ability to qualify for coverage if you have health issues or pre-existing conditions
  • Often more affordable than standard individual coverage
  • Faster approval process

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Social Security Disability Medical Exam: Six Things You Should Never Do

Many people who apply for Social Security Disability benefits will be required to undergo a Disability medical exam otherwise known as a consultative examination or CE. While this can be nerve-wracking, it is just part of the process.

It simply means the Social Security Administration needs more information about your condition or limitations to make a decision on your claim. Oftentimes, individuals are scheduled for a Disability medical exam because they havent been to a doctor recently, their medical records are thin, or a specific test needs to be performed.

Regardless of the reason , its important to understand that this one-time medical exam is a necessary part of the Disability process and should be taken seriously. Here are six things you should NOT do if you are scheduled for a Social Security Disability medical exam.


When people learn that they have been scheduled for a Disability medical exam, they often become anxious, nervous and worried. These are understandable reactions, but its important to keep things in perspective. Consultative examinations are just one piece of the Disability determination puzzle.

The exam will be performed by an independent medical professional who you probably have never seen before. He or she is being paid by the Social Security Administration to conduct an exam and give an unbiased opinion about your current condition and limitations. The exam is meant to provide a snap shot, not the complete picture.

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Legal Guidelines For Pre

To protect job applicants against discrimination, the ADA prohibits requiring a medical exam prior to extending a job offer. However, employers are allowed to ask prospective employees to take a medical exam after making a conditional job offer, as long as they require all applicants for the same job to undergo the same exam. Employers can also ask job applicants to describe, or demonstrate, how they would perform specific job functions prior to extending an offer.

Pre-employment examinations may include physical exams as well as health inquiries, including drug and alcohol tests, psychological tests, and physical or mental health assessments.

Additionally, employees may be required to have physicals if health or fitness is a job requirement. For example, police officers or firefighters may be asked to demonstrate the physical fitness necessary to perform their jobs.

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Why You Should Not Share Any Personal Opinions

A typical CE exam is quick and to the point, so it is important to stay focused on the review of your condition. Limit yourself to only talk about your condition and not opinions.

Do not tell a disability doctor you think you are dying, that you think the examination is unnecessary, that you do not trust doctors, or that you believe your current medical treatment is not good.

Some or all of these opinions may be true, but as mentioned, this is not the time to complain or opine about the validity of the exam. The doctor is not there to diagnose you or treat you, so do not say things that will make them question you or make you appear untrustworthy.

Employer Requirements For Pre

Four Tips for Disability Exams | Cleveland, Ohio Long Term Disability Lawyer

An employer can require potential new hires to undergo a physical examination as long as they have the same requirement for all other candidates in the same job category.

The results of the exam cannot discriminate against the worker, and their medical records and history must be kept confidential and separate from their other records.

The person administering the assessment must fully understand the expectations of the position to determine if the potential employee would be able to perform the job.

Employers are also required to make reasonable accommodation for candidates with disabilities to enable them to be considered for a job opening. They cannot refuse to consider candidates with disabilities who require accommodation.

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Advice For Your Social Security Disability Consultative Examination

Lower your Expectations and Adjust Your Attitude

Social security disability applicants typically have unrealistic expectations of the consultative exam. Many see the CE as an indication that social security is finally taking their complaint seriously and wrongly assume the CE will be thorough and will cover all their disabling impairments both physical and mental.

As noted above, the CE will be very limited in scope and duration, perhaps in a crowded and unattractive office setting. The CE is apt to feel more like a cattle call than a professional medical treatment office.

Presenting to your CE with unrealistic expectations will likely lead to disappointment and frustration. Many disability claimants allow that frustration to show, creating tension between the claimant and the examiner. A claimant that communicates disappointment and anger with the examiner is less likely to find the examiner receptive to their cause.

Many consultative examiners are unwilling to review medical records that claimants bring to the examination. This can be frustrating to claimants, but realize that consultative doctors often see claimants who try to unload stacks of unorganized medical treatment notes on the doctor, or even bring actual radiographic images.

If there are specific objective medical tests such as x-rays or MRI results reports that document the problem for which the consultative doctor is examining you, be prepared with those most recent results at hand.

Retain An Attorney Immediately If You Receive A Notice Of A Ce Exam

One of the most important first steps you should take if the SSA notifies you of a CE Exam is to retain an experienced disability attorney. Your attorney can give you advice on how to best handle your exam and ensure that you receive the SSDI that you deserve. Call the Injury and Disability Law Center today to schedule a free consultation to learn how our skilled lawyers can help you with your SSDI claim.

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Simple Advice For Your Consultative Exam

When you attend your CE, its important to keep calm and choose your words carefully. During the exam, disability doctors take notes on what you say and do. These notes will be passed on to your disability examiner.

When the doctor asks you how you are doing or how much something hurts related to your condition, its important to be honest. It is in human nature to automatically respond, Im good, Im well, or just fine. However, you are going through a difficult time, so you do not want to reply with the usual Im doing good answer.

Its okay to tell the CE that you are not fine, that you are in pain, or that you are not doing well. If you tell a doctor you are good, they might think your disability is not that serious. So, be honest, and if you are in pain or not feeling well, tell them that from the beginning.

Another thing to be mindful of is your responses when the doctor is examining you. For example, the doctor might assess how much pain you feel in your fractured back or injured leg. Do not tell the doctor it doesnt really hurt or it doesnt hurt as much as it used to. This is not the time to appear tough.

If you are claiming that your injury or medical condition is so painful that it prevents you from working, you must express that it hurts or how uncomfortable it feels. Do not say things that downplay your symptoms or physical limitations.

If your disability application has been denied, dont give up. Contact Crest SSD today!

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