How to file for disability, Filing for SSI
Disability Requirements, Disability Status
How long is the wait?, Disability Application
The Social Security List of Impairments
Qualifying for Disability, Mental Disability
Disability Lawyer Info, Disability Back Pay

Can your doctor actually get you approved for SSD or SSI disability?

The simple answer to this is maybe. Social Security Disability examiners are supposed to give treating physician's opinions weight during medical disability determinations. The reason for this is that they should have more knowledge about the limitations imposed by your disabling condition/conditions. This does not mean it is enough for your doctor to write a simple statement that says you are disabled. Your doctor’s treatment notes must contain medical information and testing that support the statement.

Your doctor may help by completing a medical/or psychiatric residual functional capacity form that goes into great detail with regard to your limitations and also offers a section for your physician to provide a diagnosis, response to treatment, and a prognosis. While Social Security actually uses forms known as RFC, or residual functional capacity, statements, lawyers who handle disability claims will send something to a doctor known as a medical source statement. In principle, they are essentially the same type of information-gathering form.

To learn more about medical source statements: What is a medical source statement?

If your doctor would rather provide a non-form statement with your diagnosis, treatment, response to treatment, and their prognosis along with an opinion with regard to your limitations, that would potentially be equally useful.

However, for the most part, it is probably a given that a structured and formatted medical source statement will stand the best chance of providing the information that both an administrative law judge and the Social Security Administration are looking for. This is simply due to the fact that the vast majority of all doctors really have no idea of what information to provide, while forms sent by disability attorneys specifically address the information that is needed.

The important thing to remember is that Social Security Disability is based upon functionality more than specific conditions. If a condition causes severe limitations that could prevent you from working and performing SGA, you may be found disabled.

Conversely, a doctor can hurt your disability claim. It would in the best interest of all disability applicants do get a copy of their medical records prior to filing for disability. Sometimes doctors write things that are not favorable and you should be aware of their opinions prior asking them to complete any kind of statement for you.

Essential Questions

What is the Social Security Disability SSI list of impairments?

Can you work while getting or applying for Disability?

How Often Does Social Security Approve Disability The First Time You Apply?

Tips for getting Social Security Disability or SSI benefits approved

What medical conditions will get you approved for disability?

What kind of Mental Problems Qualify for Disability?

Receiving a Disability Award Letter

Conditions Social Security will recognize as a disability

Previously answered questions regarding SSD and SSI

Applying for disability in your state

Most popular topics on SSDRC.com

Social Security Disability SSI Questions

The listings, list of disabling impairments

Can a mental illness qualify you for disability?

Disability Lawyers prevent unnecessary denials

How much Social Security Disability SSI back pay?

How to apply for disability for a child or children

Filing a Social Security Disability SSI application

Filing for disability - when to file

How to apply for disability - where to apply

Qualifications for disability benefits

How to Prove you are disabled and Win your Disability Benefits

Qualifying for Disability - The Process

How to get disability for depression

Getting disability for fibromyalgia

SSI disability for children with ADHD

What is the Application Process for Social Security Disability and SSI?

Common Mistakes to avoid after being denied for Disability

Social Security Disability SSI Exam tips

More Social Security Disability SSI Questions

Social Security Disability SSI definitions

What makes you eligible for Social Security Disability or SSI?

New and featured pages on SSDRC.com

Who can help me file for disability?

Related pages:

How to File for Disability - Tips for Filing
If I Get Denied Twice For SSD or SSI Disability, What Do I Do?
How does back pay for Social Security Disability work?
When you file your disability application
How do you get an SSI disability application and Claim started?
Who is the DDS Doctor, i.e. the Social Security Doctor?

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

Do I need an attorney to win disability?
How Long Does It Take To Go Before A Judge For Disability?
Will a Judge give you an Immediate Decision at the Disability Hearing?
What happens when you go to a disability hearing?
Social Security Disability SSI and Medical conditions
Social Security Disability lawyer fee
Can a lawyer or attorney speed up my disability case?
When can I expect my first disability check and my back pay check?
Going to a medical exam for Social Security Disability or SSI
Filing for disability - How to file the disability application
How much does disability pay?
Can I get permanent Social Security Disability or SSI?
How long will it take to get a disability decision letter?
Social Security Disability and SSI Medical Exams
How long does it take to be approved for SSI or Social Security Disability?
How Long to get a Disability Hearing decision?
How long to get disability benefits after you receive an award notice?
Social Security Disability and Working
What makes a person eligible to receive disability benefits?
How To Get Disability Through SSDI or SSI Approved
How Much Income Can A Person Earn If He Draws Social Security Disability?
Partial disability benefits from Social Security
Can I Qualify For Disability for Depression?

For the sake of clarity, SSDRC.com is not the Social Security Administration, nor is it associated or affiliated with SSA. This site is a personal, private website that is published, edited, and maintained by former caseworker and former disability claims examiner, Tim Moore, who was interviewed by the New York Times on the topic of Social Security Disability and SSI benefits in an article entitled "The Disability Mess" and also by the Los Angeles Times on the subject of political attempts to weaken the Social Security Disability system.

The goal of the site is to provide information about how Social Security Disability and SSI work, the idea being that qualified information may help claimants pursue their claims and appeals, potentially avoiding time-consuming mistakes. If you find the information on this site helpful and believe it would be helpful to others, feel free to share links to its homepage or other pages on website resource pages, blogs, or social media. Copying of this material, however, is prohibited.

To learn more about the author, please visit the SSDRC.com homepage and view the "about this site" link near the bottom of the page.