Social Security Disability Resource Center

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Getting letters from doctors to help win disability benefits

Letters from doctors can definitely help to win Social Security Disability and SSI cases but there are times when it can be difficult to obtain such a letter. Why is it Difficult to get a Doctor's help on a Social Security Disability Case?


1. Should you get a Statement from a Personal Physician for your SSD or SSI Disability Case?
2. Will Social Security Attempt To Get A Letter From Your Doctor To Help Your Case?
3. Will my doctor charge me for a letter for my social security disability claim?
4. Why does Social Security or DDS disregard my doctor's statement supporting my case?
5. Social Security Disability Doctor, Supportive Statements

Even addressing this particular question presupposes that many doctors are reluctant, or even unwilling, to help their patients with their social security disability case. Unfortunately, this is sometimes the reality. In the area of disability representation, I have found it to be true that many doctors will ---

A) Completely refuse to provide a detailed, supporting letter

B) Will agree to complete and provide a statement but will provide one that is ineffective because it lacks any useful information about a claimant's functionality (which is needed to establish whether or not a claimant can return to their past work or perform some type of other work).

C) Will agree to provide the type of residual functional capacity statement that is needed by a claimant or a claimant's disability attorney, but only in return for a ridiculous fee (believe it or not, some doctors will try to charge as much as five hundred dollars for a statement that should only take ten to 15 minutes).

Working in claimant representation, I have had physicians tell me on the phone that they simply do not fill out forms or write letters to help their patients who are filing for disability. Why does this happen? My own estimation is that too many doctors simply do not want to be bothered with taking time from their busy schedules.

The unfortunate reality for many claimants is that, though a statement from a doctor may help them to win their social security disability case at a hearing, their doctor may not assist them.

Despite this reality, however, a claimant should always make the attempt to get a completed statement from their doctor in support of their case. Further yet, if the doctor expresses reluctance in doing this, they should not give up. I have personally been involved in situations in which a physician finally agreed to supply a statement (or complete a form, such as a residual functional capacity form ) after several requests had been made.

Of course, claimants who do not feel comfortable in making such requests and who are represented by a disability lawyer may never have to do this on their own. Typically, a social security disability representative will, in the course of preparing a case for hearing, attempt to gain a supporting statement from a claimant's treating physician

  • What medical conditions will get you approved for disability?

  • What kind of Mental Problems Qualify for Disability?

  • Which conditions will social security recognize as a disability?

  • Tips for getting Social Security Disability or SSI benefits approved

  • SSDRC Homepage:

    Social Security Disability and SSI Resource Center

    The Most Basic questions about Getting Disability Benefits

    Social Security Disability SSI and whether or not you can work

    Common Mistakes to avoid after being denied for Disability

    Social Security Disability SSI Questions and Answers

    More Social Security Disability SSI Questions and Answers

    Common Questions about Social Security Disability and SSI

    Winning Social Security Disability or SSI Benefits

    The SSI Disability Benefits Program

    Medical exams for disability claims

    Applying for Disability in various states

    Social Security Disability SSI and Doctors - Yours and Theirs

    Social Security Disability and SSI Claim Reviews

    Social Security Disability SSI System and Benefits for Children

    Denials, Appeals, and Getting a Disability Lawyer or Representative

    What you should know about Social Security Disability and SSI Denials

    Questions about Disability Lawyers and Hiring a Disability Attorney

    Frequently asked questions about getting Denied for Disability Benefits

    FAQ on Disability Claim Representation

    Disability hearings before Judges

    Selecting and hiring Disability Lawyers

    Various Types of Benefits including SSI, Mental, and Child benefits

    Social Security and SSI based on Mental Disability

    Social Security Disability or SSI Benefits for Children

    Disability Benefits through Social Security

    Filing for Social Security Disability or SSI Benefits

    Social Security Disability SSI: Medical Evidence and Records

    Filing your claim for disability benefits

    Eligibility for receiving disability benefits

    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

    Resources on this site

    Social Security Disability, SSI Terms and Definitions

    Previously answered questions regarding SSD and SSI

    For Individuals living in North Carolina

    Applying for Disability in North Carolina

    North Carolina Disability Lawyer

    Related pages:

    Can your doctor help you get disability?
    What if a husband and wife are both receiving disability?
    If you receive disability, can you work and supplement your income?
    How to file for disability in New Mexico
    Filing for disability with arthritis, osteoarthritis
    Should you get a Disability Lawyer before you File
    When do you get a letter about your disability benefit amount?
    Applying for SSD and SSI at the same time
    Help from a disability attorney
    Permanent disability benefits
    Eligible for disability back pay benefits
    How long does SSDI and SSI disability take to get?
    How to file for disability in Connecticut
    When do I get my disability check and back pay check?
    Decision by the judge at a disability hearing

    These pages provide answers to basic questions about pursuing disability benefits

    How to check the status of my Social Security disability claim
    To qualify for disability, what to prove
    Preparation to win a disability hearing
    Social Security Disability lawyers FAQ
    How Much Income Can you Earn If you draw Social Security Disability?
    What does Social Security Disability SSI pay, how much?
    Social Security Disability Maximum back pay
    Social Security Disability Claims and Medical Exams
    What is qualifying for disability benefits based on?
    Partial Social Security Disability SSI benefits
    Filing for disability and financial help
    Getting approved after a Social Security Disability Psychological exam
    How long does it take to receive disability benefits after you are approved?
    Does Social Security Disability Come With Medicaid Benefits?
    Applying for Disability or SSI - How long does it take
    Can you work if you get Social Security Disability?
    Am I eligible to receive disability benefits?
    What medical disabilities, conditions qualify for Disability Benefits?
    How to get disability for degenerative disc disease
    What mental problems qualify for disability?
    Conditions that get approved for disability