How Do You Prepare For A Social Security Disability Hearing?

Woman Preparing For Your Social Security Disability Hearing

The best way to prepare for a Social Security Disability Hearing is by making sure that all of your medical records are up to date and submitted to the Office of Disability Adjudication and Review (ODAR) prior to your hearing. Medical records and doctors’ statements (RFCs) are the most important aspects of your claim, so you should make sure that all of the information the Judge receives is up to date and accurate.

You should plan to arrive at your hearing early. If you are late, the Judge may cancel the hearing, or it may put you in a bad light during the hearing. These hearings are often informal, so it is not necessary to dress in business attire, but you should still dress respectfully.

Why Are Medical Records So Important?

medical records of injured worker used to help in Social Security Disability hearingYour medical records are the evidence that you submit to the Social Security Administration. By collecting all of your medical records, the Judge will be able to trace the progress of your disability in order to determine its seriousness.

Medical records contain the results of every doctor’s appointment, MRI, CAT scan, or surgery that you have had. It is very important that as soon as you receive your hearing date, you contact all of your doctors and make sure that up-to-date medical records are submitted to the ODAR.

What Is An RFC?

An RFC, or “Residual Functional Capacity” form, is a document that you can ask your doctors to personally fill out and send to the ODAR. This document contains specific questions that are very helpful to the Judge in determining whether or not you are disabled. Most doctors will fill these forms out, but some will not. You should stress the importance of these forms to your doctors.

What Kinds Of Questions Should You Prepare For?

woman being asked questions about her disability for her Social Security Disability HearingThe Judge is most likely to ask you questions about your disability and the way that it affects your life. They will ask you how much pain you are in and which parts of your body hurt the most. They will ask how that pain affects your ability to work and do other normal activities, such as drive or sit comfortably. They want to know whether or not the disability has had a significant impact on your ability to enjoy life the same way that you used to.

Be sure to practice answering questions like these questions beforehand. The best way to answer a Judge’s question is by answering specifically. Judges ask specific questions because they want specific answers. They have very limited time to conduct hearings and they want answers quickly so that they can make their decision.

Do You Have a Pending Social Security Disability Hearing?
Call d’Oliveira & Associates Today for Help!

How Can A Social Security Disability Lawyer Help You?

If you have a Social Security Disability lawyer, they will be able to collect all of your medical records for you, making sure that your file is up to date before the hearing. They can help you prepare for injury specific questions that a Judge is likely to ask you. They will represent you at the hearing and make sure that the Judge is fully aware of all of the important aspects of your claim that they may have missed while reviewing your medical records on their own. Lawyers will also be able to cross-examine the experts, who will not always be on your side.

Why Hire Us?

RI Social Security Disability Lawyer helping couple with Social Security Disability HearingIf you hire a lawyer to represent you at a Social Security Disability hearing, your chances of a favorable decision are twice as high. The Rhode Island disability lawyers at our firm have years of experience handling Social Security Disability claims and they charge no fee unless you win your claim and receive past due benefits. For a free (no obligation) case evaluation, call our toll free number or fill out a contact form on our website.