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

How to answer questions at a Social Security Disability CE examination

Someone asked this question about disability exams:

"I have a CE exam for my SS disability claim which I am filing for bipolar. I am worried that I might say the wrong thing, or not say the right thing, or not be taken seriously."

This begs the question. Can you say the wrong thing during a CE exam?

My answer to that--and, mind you, this is just my own answer and opinion based on my subjective experience of having been a disability examiner--is no. You really can't say the wrong thing at a physical CE (consultative exam, otherwise known as a social security disability medical exam). And to be honest, the examining physician isn't really that interested in talking to you, versus examining you so he can submit his or her CE report.

On the other hand, if you feel discomfort or pain, or have difficulty with range of motion in a joint, or have trouble getting onto the examining table, you shouldn't minimize this either.

Let me elaborate. The last thing you want to do at a physical consultative exam is exaggerate your condition by going on and on about it.

Why? Some of the doctors who perform CEs for social security have a negative bias against disability claimants (which brings up the question, why the heck are they doing these exams anyway? Answer: easy money). And appearing as if you're trying to embellish the effects of your condition may only activate the examining physician's built-in bias.

However, by the same token, you shouldn't try to hide your pain or discomfort or appear as if you don't have limitations. You may ask yourself, what individual who is filing for disability would try to minimize their problems when they are being seen at a medical exam? It happens all the time. And it seems to happen on the part of older individuals who, perhaps, are a little embarrassed to be applying for disability.

However, the act of applying for disability is not something anyone should feel embarrassed about. The truth is, social security disability benefits are not a handout. They are benefits provided by insurance, insurance that you pay for through your FICA deductions.

So, back to the question, the answer is:

1. Don't embellish your condition when speaking to a doctor at an exam.

2. Don't hide your pain or discomfort or limitations either.

3. Just answer the doctor's questions honestly and fully.

Now, in this post we've discussed physical social security exams. Question: can you say the wrong thing at a social security disability mental exam? And the answer to that question is in a near-future post.

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

Related pages:

What if you Receive a Disability Denial from Social Security?
What does a Disability Denial Letter from Social Security say?
Does Social Security deny every disability case the first time?
What is the process for approving a Social Security disability claim?
Denied for Disability, Should you File a new Application?
What is the process for approving a Social Security disability claim?
When does a case go to the Social Security Disability review board?
How long will an SSI or SSDI disability claim take?
Using a lawyer to potentially speed up the disability appeal process
Speeding up the Social Security Disability or SSI Claim Process
Social Security Award Letter and being due a substantial back pay amount
Reasons to get a representative who specializes in disability claims only
When you apply for social security disability should you send copies of your xrays?
Getting approved for disability based on being blind
How to answer questions at a Social Security Disability CE examination
What disability claimants get angry about - Part II
How does Social Security consider pain?

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 provide answers to basic questions about pursuing disability benefits

How to file for disability, filing tips
What to Prove to Qualify for Disability Benefits
Applying for disability benefits, SSI and SSDI
What Disabilities Qualify for SSI and Social Security Disability?
Will you get disability back pay?
Social Security Disability And SSI Qualifications
Permanent Disability Qualifications for SSD and SSI
Social Security Disability SSI status
Disability lawyer representation, finding lawyers
Who will qualify for disability and what qualifying is based on
Qualifications for Disability Benefits
Important points about filing for disability
How long does it take to get disability after applying?
Am I Eligible For Social Security Disability?
Who is eligible for SSI disability?
How to get disability in Florida