Overview of Disability

Disability Back Pay

Disability Requirements

Disability Applications

Disability Advice Tips

How long do cases take?

How to win Disability

SSD Mistakes to avoid

Disability for Mental

What if you get denied?

How to file Appeals

Disability through SSA

SSI Disability Benefits

Disability for Children

How do I qualify for it?

Working and Disability

Disability Award Notice

Disability Lawyer Q&A

Disability Conditions List

What is a disability?

Your Medical Evidence

Filing for your Disability

Disability Eligibility

SSD SSI Definitions

Recent Questions

SSDRC Disability Blog

Will a Disability attorney try to Help You get Your Medical Records for your SSD or SSI claim?

Most disability attorneys and non-attorney reps will help you get your medical records. Oftentimes, claimants donít even know what medical information is necessary to win a claim, and it is this type of legal expertise that a legal representative can and should offer clients fighting for social security disability (SSD) or SSI.

However, before hiring a legal representative, be sure to ask what the policy is concerning medical records. Some representatives require their clients to pay the cost of obtaining the records up front, and this can be hard for disability applicants, who typically have an income that has already been significantly reduced, if not eliminated altogether, due to their medical condition.

If the representative asks for money needed to obtain your medical records up front, this is not necessarily a negative reflection on his or her attitude toward clients. Rather, there are some firms who have hundreds of ongoing cases, and the cost of obtaining medical records for all of them would be prohibitive.

There are some representatives, attorneys, and law firms who will assume the cost of obtaining medical records and agree to wait to be reimbursed until after the trial. However, keep in mind that this only postpones payment--win or lose, most fee agreements between disability attorneys and their clients specify that the claimant will pay the cost of obtaining medical records regardless of if the claim is won or lost. Read your agreement carefully before signing, so that you are aware of what your financial obligations will be when the case is done.

If you absolutely do not wish to pay for the cost of getting your medical records, you can attempt to gather them yourself. Just be sure to ask your representative what he or she needs, and contact your physician regularly until either you or your attorney actually has the records in hand (some physicians take several phone calls before complying with records requests).

Remember that disability claims are won and lost based on information in your medical records, so itís important to provide the adjudicator (decision-maker) with everything needed to prove that your medical condition places physical or mental limitations on your ability to work that are severe enough to prevent you from participating in substantial gainful activity.

Return to:  Social Security Disability Resource Center, or read answers to Questions

Related pages:

What does a Social Security Disability Attorney or Representative do for your claim?
Getting a Social Security Disability Attorney or Representative for your case
How will an attorney help me win disability benefits?
Disability Lawyers, Medical Records, and Social Security Hearings
What Expenses Will A Social Security Attorney Charge In Addition To The Fee?
Can a disability attorney speed up my disability hearing case?
Should you get a Disability Lawyer before you File for Disability, or get an answer on your claim?
Using a lawyer for a Social Security Disability, SSDI, case

Information on the following topics can be found here: Social Security Disability Questions and in these subsections:

Frequently asked questions about getting Denied for Disability Benefits | FAQ on Disability Claim Representation | Info about Social Security Disability Approvals and Being Approved | FAQ on Social Security Disability SSI decisions | The SSD SSI Decision Process and what gets taken into consideration | Disability hearings before Judges | Medical exams for disability claims | Applying for Disability in various states | Selecting and hiring Disability Lawyers | Applying for Disability in North Carolina | Recent articles and answers to questions about SSD and SSI

These pages answer some of the most basic questions for individuals who are considering filing a claim.

Filing for disability - How to file for SSD or SSI and the Information that is needed by Social Security
How to Apply for Disability - What medical conditions can you apply and qualify for?
Applying for Disability - How long does it take to get Social Security Disability or SSI benefits?
What happens if I file a disability application and it is denied by a disability examiner or Judge?
How to Prove you are disabled and qualify to win disability benefits
How do you prove your disability case if you have a mental condition or impairment?
Social Security Disability Back pay and How Long it Takes to Qualify for it and receive it
Social Security Disability SSI - Eligibility Requirements and Qualifications Criteria