The Disability Expert

A Free Guide to Social Security Disability Insurance and Supplemental Security Income Disability Benefits


 

 

 

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The Disability Report Form

By R. M. Bottger

 

The Disability Report form is the application that you fill out to apply for Social Security disability benefits. The forms that the Social Security Administration  gives you to fill out are your opportunity to make your case so make the best use of the forms that you can.

The first question on The Disability Report Form asks what your disabling condition is. Be sure to list all physical and mental impairments that you have. This may seem obvious to you, but a lot of people fail to list all of their impairments. Sometimes, if a person has been involved with Worker’s Compensation, he or she will only list his or her work-related impairments on the Disability Report form. For example, a man has a back injury that he received at work and a heart condition; he then makes the mistake of only listing his back injury on his Disability Report form because when he was dealing with Worker’s Compensation that was the only impairment that they would consider. Sometimes people fail to list mental impairments because they are embarrassed about their mental impairment. Sometimes, people are just so focused on one impairment that they forget to list the other impairments. For example, when I was a disability determination specialist in Oklahoma, I had a case on a fellow that said he was disabled because of a heart condition; he did not allege any other conditions. Well, his file ended up about five inches thick full of records on his heart. However, his heart condition was not bad enough for him to be found disabled. SSA’s regulations are very tough on heart conditions. However, in one spot out of that huge stack of records I found a place where it said that the fellow was signing. It turned out that the fellow was deaf, and he had never mentioned it on any of his forms. Fortunately, I found out about it, and his case was an allowance due to his deafness. SSA will consider all of your impairments; therefore, make sure you list all of your mental and physical impairments on your form.

            On the Disability Report form, you will be asked to list the names, addresses, and phone numbers of every place you have received treatment. Be sure to list every place you have received treatment. Also, be sure to give the complete, correct mailing address and phone number. When I was a disability determination specialist, people would write things like “Dr. Smith, Tulsa, unknown phone number.” The lack of information made it very hard to get the needed records. (See What Medical Records Should You Submit When You Apply for Disability Benefits?)

Also, on your Disability Report Form, you will be asked how many years of formal education that you have. Do not exaggerate the amount of education that you have. Maybe you are embarrassed that you do not have more education, but this is one instance in which it pays to be honest. According to SSA, people with less education are less able to adapt to other types of work; therefore having less education can actually help your case for Social Security disability benefits.

            In conclusion, try to be as complete and accurate as you can when filling out forms for SSA.

           

 

 

 


 
 

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