The first thing I ask a potential client is: are you being treated for your medical condition?
I am always surprised by the number of people who say “no.” Many of them have valid reasons — no insurance, can’t afford to get medical care. However, medical records in Social Security disability claims are what help you prove your case and win benefits.
Proving Your Disability
In order to qualify for Social Security disability benefits, you must:
- Have earned enough work credits in a job that paid into Social Security; and
- Have a medical condition that meets the Social Security definition of disability.
Medical evidence is needed to prove that your condition qualifies as a disability under the Social Security Administration’s definition, and if you’re not receiving treatment, there is likely not enough medical evidence of your disability.
In addition to lacking medical evidence, the fact that your condition is not being treated can also be seen as a red flag to the SSA. Because if your condition is not serious enough to get on-going medical treatment, it is unlikely Social Security will think you are disabled.
I Can’t Afford Treatment. What Do I Do?
Here in Harris County, Texas, some people without insurance are able to go to the Harris County Hospital District to get treatment. While patients may not be seen as quickly as they would like, but if a potential client says they are seeing a doctor at the public hospital or clinic, I know they are seriously ill and doing what they can to continue their treatment.
I also know that I will be able to get medical records to support their disability claim.
So if you’re suffering from a disabling condition and want to seek Social Security disability benefits, we strongly recommend that you not stop seeing your doctor. Even if the treatment doesn’t seem to be helping and seems like a “waste” of your time, your visits will continue accumulating medical evidence to support your disability claim.
And if you can’t afford your doctor any more, look for other options, such as public hospitals and clinics.
Get Help with Social Security Disability Denials
M. Stanley Whitehead is a board certified Social Security attorney who helps clients across the United States to win disability benefits. If you’re a disabled worker who has been denied Social Security disability, contact the law offices of M. Stanley Whitehead to schedule a free initial consultation.