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Old 05-11-2016, 01:32 PM
 
2 posts, read 1,512 times
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I have post traumatic stress disorder, depression and anxiety that keeps me from working. I have bad panic attacks that make me unable to function, and sometimes something as small as standing in line at the post office will send me into one and I'll be out of commission for the rest of the day. I've been out of work since last September and used up my short term disability. I've applied for long term disability and social security, and today someone from social security called me and said they're reviewing my claim and they made an appointment for me to see one of their doctors and a psychologist. What should I expect at this appointment? I know how hard it is to get accepted and that I probably won't get it because I don't have one foot in the grave, but what kind of questions will they ask? What will it be like?

Has anyone ever been sent to the special doctor for social security disability before? Is it different than a regular doctor? I'm really nervous, please help.
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Old 05-11-2016, 03:13 PM
 
Location: God's Country
4,651 posts, read 3,019,005 times
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You're talking about a consultative exam (CE). In a disturbing percentage of them, the claimant gets the short-shrift. The CE asks a few questions without really examining you and sends in a rpt. Last I recall, 25% of cases are allowed at the initial level. There are various appeal stages with the upshot being that about half the cases are eventually allowed if you keep pursuing.


If your impairment is classified as severe and your med. findings satisfy the level of severity spelled out in the Listing of Impairments, you're allowed. Otherwise, they proceed to determining if you can do your previous work. If you can, you are denied. If you cannot, they determine if you can do other kinds of work that exists in significant numbers in the natl. economy. At this level, they factor-in your age, education, and work experience. If you are a younger individual, educated, and have a skilled or semiskilled background, these favorable factors work against you.


SSA does a good job of having their rules accessible and updated at their website, including the SS Act and related laws, pursuant regulations, SS Rulings, and Program Operations Manual (POMS) operating guidelines.
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Old 05-11-2016, 05:31 PM
 
2 posts, read 1,512 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Calvert Hall '62 View Post
You're talking about a consultative exam (CE). In a disturbing percentage of them, the claimant gets the short-shrift. The CE asks a few questions without really examining you and sends in a rpt. Last I recall, 25% of cases are allowed at the initial level. There are various appeal stages with the upshot being that about half the cases are eventually allowed if you keep pursuing.


If your impairment is classified as severe and your med. findings satisfy the level of severity spelled out in the Listing of Impairments, you're allowed. Otherwise, they proceed to determining if you can do your previous work. If you can, you are denied. If you cannot, they determine if you can do other kinds of work that exists in significant numbers in the natl. economy. At this level, they factor-in your age, education, and work experience. If you are a younger individual, educated, and have a skilled or semiskilled background, these favorable factors work against you.


SSA does a good job of having their rules accessible and updated at their website, including the SS Act and related laws, pursuant regulations, SS Rulings, and Program Operations Manual (POMS) operating guidelines.
Thank you for the reply. That's exactly what I'm afraid of. I'm so worried the doctor will be dismissive and rude because I read a bunch of stuff online about people saying disability doctors are often very rude. I feel like they're going to look at me and think I'm lying or exaggerating, but the truth is at this point in the game I can't really handle life very well. I look perfectly healthy and am young so I'm pretty sure they're going to laugh up their sleeve. I guess I"m just having anxiety about being judged by the doctor, which is silly.
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Old 05-11-2016, 07:40 PM
 
2,741 posts, read 6,982,275 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by concerned-questions View Post
Thank you for the reply. That's exactly what I'm afraid of. I'm so worried the doctor will be dismissive and rude because I read a bunch of stuff online about people saying disability doctors are often very rude. I feel like they're going to look at me and think I'm lying or exaggerating, but the truth is at this point in the game I can't really handle life very well. I look perfectly healthy and am young so I'm pretty sure they're going to laugh up their sleeve. I guess I"m just having anxiety about being judged by the doctor, which is silly.
Do not be worried about this appointment. The doctor you will see will most likely be a psychiatrist. They will assess your current mental status and will not be judgemental at all. They will be most interested in how your PTSD interfers with your activities of daily living (ADL).
Be honest with them. They do not make the final determination. They simply report their professional findings back to the Disability Determination Office. That office uses that info plus other factors to make the initial decision.

The determination will be based on the longevity, severity and history of treatment, response to treatment as well as your age, education and work hx.

Good luck and try not to make yourself sick over it.
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Old 05-11-2016, 10:13 PM
 
Location: Central Florida
730 posts, read 503,309 times
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If they send you to a doctor, chances are he or she will be objective, but most of the judges for Social Security are adversarial.


I have adult autism, diagnosed later than what you'ld expect. I've never worked gainfully since I was 16 doing a summer job in a library. Like you, I deal with panic attacks sometimes, they are related to a phenomenon called a "melt down". I also deal with depression (something that is also common in adult autism).


It is VERY hard to get a job being autistic (over half of us are unemployed, the rest tend to have poverty-level wages), and yet Social Security does everything they can to make sure they can find some hypothetical job for you, somewhere in the country, to disqualify you.


Like I said, just be prepared for a fight. Unless you have one foot in the grave, are totally blind or incommunicative, they will try to find some excuse to deny your claim.


My case with social security, BTW, was denied twice. I am currently involved in a lawsuit against the federal government over procedural grounds to sue them for benefits I would have received (the judge I had was an ignorant political appointee, many come from the military judge advocates). Then I basically have to start the process all over, but with a different judge hearing my case.
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Old 05-12-2016, 02:08 AM
 
33,136 posts, read 39,078,504 times
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Dont forget to bring that doctors note specifying your condition and strongly justifying/recommending your need for disability payments and why you can no longer work.With mental issues The real hurdle will be convincing the Social Security evaluator that theres a real problem and not some one who just doesnt feel like working anymore and is looking for an easier life at tax payers expense.
Best of luck,let us know how it turns out.
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Old 05-12-2016, 05:11 PM
 
Location: Mostly in my head
19,631 posts, read 53,481,140 times
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I am a psychologist and do these evals for SSI. Just be honest and describe your symptoms fully. Don't try to minimize it for fear of looking weak but also don't exaggerate. We are really good at reading people and we have no wish to be unkind or make you nervous. In my area, only retired psychiatrists do the evals on a part-time basis. For that matter, I am also retired and work part-time.

The evaluation should take about 45 min unless they are asking for cognitive testing which takes about 2 hrs. The evaluator has a stock set of questions to go through and you will probably be asked to complete an intake form first. The doc will then review your answers with you, ask a few questions, etc. You will need to list all medications you take, so either bring them or make sure you know what, what dose, and how often you take it.

We don't make the decision and never know what happens. We write a report and the SSI people decide. If they turn you down the 1st time, get a disability lawyer. They are like the car accident guys, if they take your case you don't pay them until you win. They can only take 25% of your back pay awarded; the car guys can take 33%. They don't get any of your ongoing payment, just the lump sum at settlement.
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Old 05-13-2016, 10:44 AM
 
Location: South Carolina
13,104 posts, read 17,640,353 times
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well I can tell you first off you will have several reports from drs that contradict each other and most likely if it is as bad as you say they will tell you to see a physciatrist and to keep working , I kid you not . My brother in law was like you and this is exactly what they told him . Don't go to the hearing dressed up either because if you go dressed like a bum off the street you might do better . Yep most judges for social security are adversarial indeed and they are working for the government not you .
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Old 05-13-2016, 11:46 AM
 
Location: TOVCCA
8,271 posts, read 10,510,884 times
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It helps if you have records of the psych treatment you have had, what meds have been tried, what worked and what didn't.
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Old 05-13-2016, 12:47 PM
 
Location: Mostly in my head
19,631 posts, read 53,481,140 times
Reputation: 18538
Quote:
Originally Posted by nightlysparrow View Post
It helps if you have records of the psych treatment you have had, what meds have been tried, what worked and what didn't.
The State will send records to the "examining physician" but if you have seen someone since you applied, bring those records in case the new ones didn't get sent.

Last edited by SouthernBelleInUtah; 05-20-2016 at 08:14 AM..
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