Do you have a medical condition that interferes with your ability to work? Are you thinking about filing for Social Security Disability? If so, you may want to take the time to gather the following information before filing a disability claim. Knowing this information will help you when filling out Social Security Disability forms and providing documentation to back up your claim.
Your Medical History
The Social Security Administration (SSA) relies heavily on medical records in determining disability claims. The SSA will want to know the following information about your medical condition:
- how your medical provider diagnosed your condition (i.e.bloodwork, x-rays, CT scans, MRIs)
- what treatments (i.e. medicines or surgeries) you have received for the condition
- your response to the treatments you have taken for the condition
- your doctor’s prognosis for your condition
To obtain all the medical records with this information, the SSA will need you to provide them with the name and contact information of all the medical providers and treatment facilities you have used to help you with your medical condition. It will also help if they know the approximate dates on which you have sought help from a medical provider or treatment at a medical facility.
The SSA will use this information to request your medical records or you could contact the medical providers and facilities to retrieve your records yourself to send in with your application. If you could not afford medical care for your condition, the SSA could send you to see a physician who will conduct a consultative exam.
Your Work History
Work history information is another important piece of the disability qualification puzzle. The SSA first looks to see if you have worked and paid FICA taxes into the Social Security system long enough for you to have earned “work credits” to qualify for benefits. The number of work credits you must have varies. You can learn more about work credit requirements here.
The SSA will also look at your work history to understand if you have the work experience to perform other jobs, if your current job is no longer available because of your medical condition. You will need to provide the following information about your current/recent job and for each job you have held within the last 15 years:
- Name of the company/employer you worked for
- Dates you worked at each job (approximate start and finish dates)
- Work title (i.e. sales associate)
- Job skills (specific duties and tasks performed)
Your Education History
The SSA also finds your education background information important because it will show them if you have the skills to perform other jobs. Your education background information will describe your past educational experiences, including:
- Name of the school(s) you attended
- Dates you attended
- Degree(s) or certification(s) you received
- Education related to your job (i.e. trainings and certifications)
Get Help Filing Your Disability Claim
You do not have to hire an attorney to help you apply for Social Security disability benefits. However, having the help of an experienced disability attorney increases your chances success. An experienced disability attorney will know more about the procedure and will make sure you provide the SSA with all the relevant information to support your disability claim.
For over 25 years, Brock & Stout’s disability attorneys have helped clients successfully apply for Social Security disability benefits. Contact us when you’re ready to file and let us see if we can help you get the benefits you need.