Social Security defines “disability” in terms of how your medical problems impact your capacity to perform simple, entry-level work. It stands to reason, therefore, that most of the information in your disability claims file will be medical records.
As I discuss in this video, however, it would be a mistake to limit yourself to medical record evidence only. Here is what a current Social Security Administrative Law Judge says on an online forum (thanks to attorney Charles Hall and his blog at https://socsecnews.blogspot.com/):
“If the person was working prior to the alleged onset date, get work records showing attendance and performance. A person getting good performance reviews and has attendance records showing a decline from good attendance to frequent absence has good evidence to present.
If the person applied for FMLA, get that documentation as well. More than once I've seen buried in Dr Smith's records that the person had FMLA paperwork filled out and wasn't later cleared to return to work. Submit the FMLA paperwork on its own, don't risk it being buried in 250 pages and overlooked. Any documentation from an employer about accommodations is great to have.
My observation has been people tend to think the file should be medical and maybe a written statement or two or three from friends and family.
The crux of the matter is ability to work, the employment records are almost never obtained yet are extremely useful.”
Evidence about your work history, your work reviews and documentation showing a trend of declining attendance are very relevant to your disability case. So is evidence of failed work attempts and other information about problem you actually had at prior jobs.
What is your opinion? Can you think of other, non-medical evidence that would be relevant to a hearing about your capacity to work? Leave a comment below. #socialsecuritydisability #ssdi #socialsecuritydisabilityprocess #socialsecuritydisabilitybenefits
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