Should I Pull My Medical Records for Social Security?
Social Security claims often come down to the medical records and other notes that your doctors take, documenting your condition and medical status. Therefore, it is extraordinarily important that you tell the Social Security Administration (SSA) about all treating physicians, including any emergency room visits, inpatient hospital visits, and outpatient hospital visits.
When you provide the SSA with information on your medical sources, they are to make attempts to pull the records that those medical sources have to help make the decision on disability. However, there are sometimes factors outside of the disability examiner’s control that make obtaining your medical records very difficult. Occasionally, the examiner will ask for your assistance in obtaining those medical records, and other times, they will reach out to you and let you know that they did submit the request for the records, have not heard back from the medical provider, and if you could follow up with the provider about the request, it may move your claim along.
One way to avoid this mess is if you have your medical records on hand, to submit them along with your initial disability application and any medical updates you provide to the SSA throughout the process.
Another positive to helping SSA and providing your own medical records is it may help a decision to be made sooner. Sometimes, medical treating sources are slow to respond to requests for information – providers and treating sources will sometimes take well over a month to get all of one patient’s medical records over to the SSA.
If you do opt to help SSA and provide your medical records, be sure to: (1) get records from all of your medical sources (if this is not possible, make sure you let SSA know about other providers whose records you do not have); (2) get current records (you should have records documenting treatment within the last 90 days); and (3) get records that show when your disability began. All of these records, taken together, should provide an accurate assessment of your health and allow the SSA to make a determination on your current disability status.
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