Don’t Hurt Your Own Disability Case

By: Kirsten E. Wold

Here are a few common mistakes people make that hurt their chances of winning their Social Security case. Please do not make these mistakes.

  1. Don’t miss doctor appointments! You often wait a long time to see your doctor, and you don’t want to miss your turn. Also, the Social Security judge may wonder why you would miss your doctor appointments when you say that your condition is so bad that you are disabled.
  2. File all Social Security forms on time. It’s hard enough to win, don’t give them an easy way to dismiss your case. Almost all the forms that Social Security sends you do have a time limit.
  3. Make sure to remember ALL your symptoms when you see your doctor.
  4. Ask for help! Our office can help you with the endless and repetitive forms that Social Security sends to you. Don’t just say “I cook my own meals,” if what you mean is you can warm something up in the microwave. Don’t say “I watch TV” if you mean that you do it because you must lie down to manage pain. Can you follow a story on TV, can you concentrate and remember what you’ve seen? If not, this information needs to be included. You can do your own washing, but how long does it take you? You can go for a walk, but do you need to rest afterward? The whole truth needs to be on these forms. Our office can help you with these and be sure you are not hurting your own case by leaving out details.
  5. Get treatment for any substance abuse problems. Please don’t ignore these. Chances are that it is repeatedly mentioned in your medical record. Get treatment, get clean and sober, then the issue is manageable. Otherwise: it can be a barrier to winning benefits in many cases.