What is the first thing that will get you denied for disability?
If a person is working and making more than the SGA amount for the given year, that will lead to a quick technical denial. That is true for an SSD or SSI claim. If the claim is for SSI and the applicant is found to have more than the allowance resource limit (resources means countable assets), then that will lead to a denial.
In either case, the denial will be for non-medical reasons and will be a technical denial, meaning the case will not have undergone a medical review by a disability examiner.
If a case gets on to an examiner's desk, however, there is no one thing that will get a person denied. The examiner will have to send off for the claimant's medical records. The decision cannot be made until those arrive so it is usually a waiting game. If the claimant has no recent medical treatment, they will be sent to a consultative medical exam performed by an independent physician. The purpose of that exam is simply to provide something that is not older than 60 days.
Usually, the results of a CE, or consultative exam, do not provide a strong basis for approval. I would say that the thing that gets most applicants denied is the failure to establish that their claim meets the SSA definition of disability simply because they lack the medical evidence that actually indicates that their functional capacity has not been reduced to the extent that they can no longer work and earn a substantial and gainful income at a past job, or while doing some type of other work that their vocational factors might otherwise qualify them for.
About the Author: Tim Moore is a former Social Security Disability Examiner in North Carolina, has been interviewed by the NY Times and the LA Times on the disability system, and is an Accredited Disability Representative (ADR) in North Carolina. For assistance on a disability application or Appeal in NC, click here.
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