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

What Does Social Security Disability Need From Me to Make A Medical Determination?

Social Security requires a list of your medical sources (i.e. hospital records, treating physician records, mental health records, etc.) and your work history (which includes all of types of work that you have performed three months or longer in the last fifteen years).

So how do you provide all of this information to Social Security? When you file your disability application with Social Security, a Social Security claims representative will ask questions about your medical treatment sources and your work history.


1. How long does it take to be approved for SSI or Social Security disability?
2. How to find out if a disability claim has been approved or denied
3. The Decision on Social Security Disability or SSI
4. What kind of Final Decision can I receive on my Disability Application?

What are acceptable medical sources for the purpose of a Social Security disability application? Acceptable medical treatment sources generally include licensed medical professionals including physicians, psychologists, optometrists, osteopaths, ophthalmologists, or other licensed medical professionals.

Social Security does not consider chiropractors an acceptable medical source, however Social Security will consider any objective medical information contained in chiropractic medical treatment notes. For example, if your chiropractic treatment notes contain x rays of your knees or spine, the disability examiner may use these to help make the medical disability determination.

You may even be pondering why your work history is so important to the Social Security disability process? To explain the importance of work activity to the Social Security disability process, you first need to know the definition of Social Security disability.

Social Security law states that disability is the inability to perform any substantial work activity (each year Social Security sets a monthly earnings limit known as the SGA amount) due to a medically determinable condition, either mental or physical, that may possibly end in death, and that has lasted for the past twelve months or is expected to last twelve months.

As you can see, work history is second only to medical source information when making a Social Security disability medical determination. Social Security must first evaluate whether you can perform any of your past work, if you cannot perform past work then they must consider if you are capable of performing any other work given the limitations that your condition or conditions impose upon you. Social Security needs information about your medical and/or mental conditions, as well as information about your work activity over the past fifteen years to make a medical determination.

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

Related pages:

The amount of back pay that you receive
Viewing Your Social Security Disability SSI File
Is autism increasing?
Social Security Disability unsuccessful work attempts
If You Get Social Security Disability or SSI, Will Your Dependents Get A Check?
How to file for disability, tips to start
When does Social Security pay the first disability benefit check?
Can I get disability based on my high blood pressure and my age?
Can I get disability if I have seizures?
How to file for disability in Pennsylvania PA
Tips for Social Security Disability Psychological and mental testing
How long will an SSI or SSDI disability claim take?
Social Security Award Letter and being due a substantial back pay amount
Should you get a Statement from a Personal Physician for your SSD or SSI Disability Case?
Can you file for disability with dyslexia?

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

What mental problems qualify for disability?
SSI disability status
How to prove you qualify for disability
Qualifying for disability eligibility requirements
How Does Social Security Decide If You Are Disabled
How much does disability pay?
Factors involved in Winning SSDI or SSI Claims
Applying for disability with Degenerative Disc Disease
How long to get a Social Security decision letter?
What Does Social Security Consider To Be a Disability?
The amount of back pay that you receive
Social Security medical disability determination process
If You Get Approved For SSDI Will You Also Get Medicare?
How long can you receive SSI or Social Security disability benefits?
How Long Does A Social Security Disability Appeal Take?
How Long Does It Take To Get Disability Benefits When You First File?
Can you work if you get SSI disability?
Social Security Disability attorney fees
Am I eligible to receive disability benefits?
What are the non medical requirements for disability
How to get SSI
Approved for disability benefits
SSD SSI disability hearing decision