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A few years ago, I was in a pretty serious car accident. During the aftermath, I became really familiar with a lot of different types of lawyers. I worked with personal injury lawyers, insurance lawyers, and many others. Perhaps the most important, though, was the estate planning lawyer. I was really young, and neither my wife or I had thought about starting a will. But the accident kind of scared us into it. What would happen if one of us were to die? Even when still in the hospital, I was working with the lawyer to draw up a will. Now, I have some peace and security about what the future will be like if something should happen to me. And I have a lot of experience working with various types of lawyers! The accident was kind of a blessing in disguise in that way.

Social Security Disability Consultative Exams

Law Blog

If you have filed for Social Security disability due to being unable to work at your job, you may be sent by the Social Security agency to have a consultative medical exam as part of the process to investigate your disability. The Social Security agency needs to know about your medical condition, and if you have not received medical care for your condition or if it has been too long since you last saw a doctor, this exam may be required. For more information about consultative exams, read on.

How much does it cost?

This exam is free of charge to you, and the doctor performing the exam does not work for the Social Security agency, but instead is contracted by the agency to do the exam. You should know that the consultative exam is just an examination, and you will not receive any treatment for your disability.

What happens during the exam?

The exam itself usually consists of your vitals being checked (blood pressure, heart rate, temperature, weight), a brief interview with a doctor, and sometimes x-rays and blood tests. The doctor should pay special attention to the part of your body that is involved in your disability. Stress will be placed on the injured area and strength and flexibility will be measured. These exams are extremely brief, sometimes lasting only a few minutes.

How soon will I get the results?

Many times, the consultative exam is the final step in determining your disability, so once the results are available from the exam, you will receive your determination soon after. The Social Security administration requires that the exam results be sent in before the end of the 10 business days; however, this deadline is often missed by the doctor. Other delays in getting the results can be due to quality reviews and inconclusive results.

The report the doctor will prepare after you receive your exam will contain the results of any medical tests and the doctor's opinion on your disability, including how much and what type of work the doctor considers you capable of performing. Your ability to stand, walk, bend, lift, carry, speak, listen and so on will be evaluated.

Will an exam result in a positive outcome for my case?

You should be aware that while this brief exam is required for you to move forward with your claim, many times you will be denied once the results of the exam are taken into consideration. Unfortunately, Social Security disability is only requesting this exam as the final step before closing your case. Claims are very seldom approved once a consultative exam has been requested, however you must attend the exam to get your final determination.

Being turned down for your disability claim is not uncommon and you should view it as just another step on the way to approval. Contact a Social Security disability lawyer, such as one from Rosenmeier Law Office, as soon as you receive your denial, since filing an appeal must be accomplished in a relatively short period of time after the denial. With the help and advocacy of an attorney, you can appeal and be successful in being awarded the benefits you are entitled to.


11 June 2015