You will have to jump through many hoops to receive Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits. One of these hoops is undergoing a consultative exam. Continue reading to learn what you can anticipate from your consultation exam and how an experienced New Jersey SSDI attorney at The Law Offices of Sheryl Gandel Mazur can help you prepare for this.

What is a consultative exam?

First of all, a consultative exam is a type of medical exam that the Social Security Administration (SSA) may schedule for an applicant if they believe that an applicant provided an insufficient amount of medical evidence.

A common misconception is that a consultative exam has a medical professional provide medical treatment to an applicant. Rather, a medical provider will run physical or psychological examinations, depending on whether an applicant claims a physical or mental disability. They may even run diagnostic tests like X-rays, blood work, and MRIs. These results ultimately allow the SSA to better determine whether to approve or deny an applicant’s SSDI benefits claim.

What can I expect from this exam?

Upon realizing that additional medical information is required, the SSA will contact the original treating source to arrange a consultative exam. This is the preferred source for the examination, though the SSA may allow your request to use your personal physician. This is so long as the following factors apply:

  • The original treating source prefers not to perform the consultative exam.
  • There are inconsistencies present in your medical records that cannot be resolved by the original treating source.
  • Your prior experience with the original testing source indicates that they are not the best option.
  • You have another valid reason for wanting to go to your personal physician.

And upon preparing for this exam, you must inform the SSA if you require language assistance. They may provide you with an interpreter free of charge. Or, you may request that you use your own interpreter. To be approved by the SSA, your interpreter will have to have the following qualifications:

  • Your interpreter must be able to read, write, and speak fluently in English and your language.
  • Your interpreter must provide an accurate interpretation of questions and responses between you and the physician.
  • Your interpreter must be familiar with basic medical and social welfare terminology.
  • Your interpreter must agree to comply with the SSA’s confidentiality of information requirements.
  • Your interpreter must not have a personal stake in the outcome of your SSDI benefits claim.

As you may likely conclude, the outcome of your consultative exam may have a significant influence on your application for SSDI benefits. So, it should go without saying that you must consult with a skilled New Jersey SSDI attorney immediately. Give us a call whenever you can.