by Tim Moore, Disability Representative, former NC Disability Examiner. Free Case Evaluation Form at the bottom or click here.
Disability hearings can take a long time in NC
Disability hearings take a very long time to get to. This is as true in North Carolina as it is in nearly every other state. The wait for a hearing can easily be longer than a year and this can make the total time required to get an approval on a claim more than two years long. In anyone’s book, this is a daunting process.
Keep going to your doctors
Because in any scenario, it will take a long number of months to get a disability hearing scheduled…there is really little for you to do with regard to preparing for a hearing. Probably the best advice is simply this: if you have access to medical care, keep going to your doctors. Because the decision that will be made on your SSD or SSI claim will be based on what’s in your medical records. And the more your medical history is documented, the better.
Now, on the other hand, if you have requested a hearing for SSI or SSD and have had some indication that your hearing date may be approaching soon…you should do exactly the same thing. Yes, that’s right. Keep going to the doctor periodically.
Why are current medical records important for the hearing?
Because as important as your cumulative medical record is, it is even more important for a disabilty judge to see that your condition is disabling currently, as in “the here and now”. Without recent evidence on which to decide your claim (no older than 2 months),it will be very difficult for an administrative law judge to conclude that you are, in fact, disabled.
Maintaining regular medical treatment will be one of the best ways for you to prepare for your hearing.