The Social Security Administration is proposing to change the rules regarding what evidence you must submit to prove you are disabled. The current rules say you have to submit evidence that demonstrates you are disabled. Under the proposed rules you must submit all evidence related to your condition, even records about conditions that may not be directly related to the medical problems that make you disabled. What makes this troubling is where do you draw the line? For example, let’s say an insurance company sends you to a doctor that works for them. If that doctor says you can work, and the insurance company uses that report to deny your insurance claim, must you submit that report to SSA? Under the proposed rules, the answer appears to be “yes.” What if your ex-spouse writes a letter to your doctor saying nothing is wrong with you? Again, if these rules are adopted, it appears you would have to submit that to Social Security.
While deciding whether to implement these rules, the Social Security Administration is required to seek comments from the public. Morgan & Weisbrod attorney, Paul Burkhalter, has submitted comments asking that the proposed rules be changed. He is concerned that the rules, as written, would make it hard for your attorney to even to talk to your doctors about whether your meet the legal requirements to be found disabled. Paul’s comments can be read by clicking on these links: http://www.regulations.gov/#!documentDetail;D=SSA-2012-0068-0075, http://www.regulations.gov/#!documentDetail;D=SSA-2012-0068-0076, http://www.regulations.gov/#!documentDetail;D=SSA-2012-0068-0077
The National Organization of Social Security Claimants Representatives (NOSSCR) is a national organization comprised of Social Security disability representatives who exist to monitor the disability program and provide a voice in Washington to protect the rights and interests of the disabled. Their comments on these proposed changes can be read here. Carl Weisbrod, is a former NOSSCR president and Paul served on the NOSSCR Board of Directors for six years. Now, John Driskill serves on NOSSCR’s Board. As you can see, if you are applying for Social Security disability benefits, it is important to have attorneys on your side who know the law, and who are willing to raise a protest when proposed changes to the disability program could have a negative impact on disability applicants. Turn to the experts at Morgan & Weisbrod for help with your disability claim – it’s important not to tackle this complicated process alone.
by Paul B. Burkhalter Managing Partner of Morgan & Weisbrod, Board Certified in Social Security Disability Law.