A common question we hear from our clients is “Why is Social Security making me fill out this form again?” When claimants fill out the initial application, it can be very extensive and time consuming to complete. The application asks about work history, medical history, what doctors you have visited, and all your prescriptions. Filling this out one time feels like it should be enough, so it’s understandable when claimants get frustrated with the SSA when they are asked to fill out forms that ask for the same information.
Believe it or not, there is some method to the SSA’s madness. Since most communication from the SSA is done through mail, most people are never told why they have to fill out a form again. They are just told to fill it out. It may be in the fine print on the last page, but who would read that even if it was there? What claimants may not realize is that if they are denied, they move to a new phase in the appeals process. This means that someone else is looking at your case to determine whether or not you qualify for Social Security Disability. In addition, and more importantly, it means that several months or more has passed since you completed your application. For most people, this means that their medical history has changed in some way. They may have received a new diagnosis, been taken off a particular medication, or been put on a new one. Their disability may have worsened, or in some cases, it may have improved. All of this generates new medical records that the SSA needs to have in hand in order to make a well informed decision.
There are a lot of contributing factors that have to be considered when applying for Social Security Disability. The severity of the disability, how debilitating it is, if it will improve, stay the same, or get worse are all factors. The facts of your medical condition(s) and how it affects your life are so important. That’s why we tell our clients that they need to fill out these forms. It so important for the SSA to have up to date medical records so that they can make the right decision in a claimants application. As we know, the application is a long progress and as things change, we want to make sure the most accurate information is in the hands of the decision makers. In summary, even though it’s tedious and repetitive, fill out those forms. It is in your best interest.