The Social Security Disability Medical Exam

If you can no longer do the work you used to do, you might want to look into Social Security disability benefits. This government program is meant to partially cover your pay when a medical condition prevents you from working. The road to get benefits, however, is long and difficult and there are several events that might cause delays and denials. Read on to learn more about one of these events, the consultative medical exam (CME).

The need for proof

The reason you are being singled out to undergo this exam might be connected to your medical condition. To get approved for Social Security disability, you must show that you have been receiving treatment for your condition. You have to see a doctor and follow all prescribed advice including diagnostic tests, therapy and medication suggestions.

Your medical records are the proof of all this medical treatment that the Social Security Administration (SSA) needs to see, and it is the lack of that proof that may have triggered the request that you undergo that special type of medical exam. It might help for you to know that the SSA needs to see the following information:

  • That your medical condition is on the list of qualified conditions.
  • That your condition has lasted for at least a year or that it will last for at least a year.
  • That your condition is backed up by medical evidence.

What will happen at the exam

This exam is performed by a medical doctor that has been contracted by the SSA and you have no choice in this matter. While there is no fee for this exam, you should also not expect to receive any treatment as a result of it. You can expect the doctor to focus on the condition or body part that you are claiming prevents you from working and, particularly, how it might affect your ability to work at your job.

For example, you may have an illness that affects your legs and feet and your most recent job involved a lot of walking and standing. There has to be a connection between your condition and your work tasks. If you were a keyboarder or worked at a customer service desk then you would be challenged to show how a leg problem might affect your that position.

After the exam

Unfortunately, the request that you undergo a CME could signal that the SSA is about to deny you benefits. You should not give up, however. Lots of people end up getting denied their benefits but then attaining them at their appeal hearing. Speak to an SS disability attorney for more information.