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How medical records influence disability cases

West Virginia residents should be as specific as possible when telling their doctors about their physical or mental impairments. This is because an examiner is looking for specific evidence of how an impairment limits an individual's ability to work when reviewing a Social Security Disability benefit application. In most cases, an applicant's medical records will determine if that individual is entitled to assistance from the government.

When a patient mentions specific details to his or her doctor, they are more likely to be included in that person's treatment notes. To qualify for benefits, a person generally needs to show that he or she is unable to work at all. This includes an inability to perform his or her current job or any others that he or she may be qualified to do. In many cases, an examiner will add extra weight to the opinions provided by an applicant's physician.

It is possible that this person will be considered the controlling authority in the matter. Therefore, if a treating physician says that an impairment makes it hard to sit, stand or perform other tasks, an examiner will take those words seriously. Even if an initial application is denied, this information could be useful during a reconsideration appeal or a hearing.

Individuals who have an inability to work because of a mental or physical impairment may be entitled to government benefits. An attorney may review a case or help a person gather evidence of his or her impairment. If an application is denied, a legal representative may be able to help an applicant with the appeal process. This may include preparing a person for what to expect during a hearing in front of a judge.

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Shawn Taylor, PLLC
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