One of the hard truths about applying for SSI or SSDI compensation is that your medical history will be closely scrutinized. For the most part, if you haven’t sought treatment, your claim will be denied. In fact, if you haven’t made any efforts to obtain diagnosis or treatment for the disabilities that are keeping you from working, it’s very possible that you will not be able to find a disability attorney willing to handle your case. We often decline representation of prospective clients without current treatment. It is very difficult to prove disability without current medical treatment.

However, there are some valid and compelling reasons an applicant may have for not complying with recommended treatments, such as not following through on the course of treatment suggested by his diagnosing physician.

When handled correctly, the Social Security Administration has offered special consideration to an applicant who is not following doctor’s orders when:

  • You can’t afford treatment and don’t have access to low cost or free medical care.
  • You don’t have insurance coverage.
  • Your insurance will not cover the treatment options available.
  • The side effects of treatment are worse than your untreated condition.
  • There are no reasonable treatment methods available for your condition.
  • The nature of your disability impedes your ability to maintain a course of treatment, such as in the case of cognitive disorders and some mental illnesses.
  • Medical treatment, or the specific treatment method, is in conflict with your religious beliefs.

Many applicants cite financial reasons for not being able to comply with treatment. In this case, it is essential that you present hard evidence showing your attempts to obtain low- or no-cost healthcare in your region.

To do this, reach out to:

  • Your county’s public health clinic, if any, such as Lincoln-Lancaster Public Health clinic or
  • Any free or low cost clinics

Carefully document every step you take in this process, especially if you are not successful.

It is always in your best interests to keep records of all your attempts to obtain aid, every doctor’s appointment, every recommendation for treatment, and everything you are doing to alleviate symptoms. Even receipts for over-the-counter pain medication could prove helpful.

Be forthcoming with this documentation. Showing the disability examiner the work you’ve put into trying to find a solution before applying for disability benefits could help improve your odds of an approval.

Are you preparing to apply for Social Security disability benefits in Lincoln with a special circumstance, like non-compliance with treatment? Take control of your claim from the start with an evaluation from Cuddigan Law. Call (402) 933-5405 or (402) 261-4005 or email [email protected] today. Be sure to get our free booklet, Give Yourself the Best Chance of Winning Your Social Security Disability Case. We meet with clients, in Lincoln, by appointment at 3800 Normal Blvd., Ste 201, Lincoln, NE 68506

Timothy J. Cuddigan (Founder - Retired)
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Omaha Social Security and Veterans Disability Lawyer With Over 40 Years Experience