How to navigate Social Security Disability

When a person has a mental disability that prohibits him or her from obtaining and gainful employment and when his or her financial resources are below a predetermined level, he or she may apply for Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits, according to Hometown Life.

This mental disorder may include a range of diagnoses including post traumatic stress disorder, major depressive disorder, bipolar disorder, learning disability, mental retardation, panic disorder, etc.

Initially, the person must go to his local Social Security Administration (SSA) office and fill out an application detailing the treatment received for the impairment and any other medical history and their work, education, and family history.

Then, the SSA will review his application and request supporting documentation from whomever the applicant designates: a family doctor, mental health professional, etc.

If there is insufficient information to make a decision on the application, it is sent to a Designated Medical Review Team for a Mental Status Examination from a Consulting Examiner (CE).

The applicant and CE will meet, and a standard mental status examination will take place. The applicant’s disability will be rated from mild to moderate to severe.

A comprehensive report will then be produced and sent to a medical review team, composed of psychologists and psychiatrists, who decide whether or not the applicant qualifies for SSD benefits.

Read more.

If you or someone you know needs help with Social Security Disability benefits, contact the Social Security Disability lawyers at Fleschner, Stark, Tanoos & Newlin.

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