How to be Persuasive at Your Disability Hearing

You may have to wait for more than a year to get a hearing on your Social Security disability case.  Since this will be your very best opportunity to be heard, you’ll want to make the most of it. To improve your chances of a successful hearing outcome, you must give relevant, honest testimony that doesn’t exaggerate or minimize your impairments. 

Here are a few tips on how to best present your case:

When you are testifying describe your limitations precisely.  If you have pain that prevents you from working, tell the judge how exactly how long -- in minutes or hours -- you can walk or stand before you have to sit down. Provide examples of how your disability affects you and explain what you have to do differently in your everyday life because of your limitations. And provide details that help “paint a picture” for the judge.  For example, maybe arthritis makes it too painful to vacuum your carpet for more than 15 minutes at time, a detail like that helps the judge to evaluate the severity of your disability. 

Always keep in mind that it is your symptoms, not your medical diagnosis, that keeps you from working.  For example, many people with MS work, but if your MS-caused fatigue is so severe you cannot work for more than an hour or two without lying down to rest that is what is preventing you from working. 

Getting you prepared for your all-important hearing is just one part of what we do at Cuddigan Law when we represent you.  At Cuddigan Law you have a dedicated team of professionals in your corner who understand the system and who will fight for your rights. Call us for a free evaluation of your situation.

 

 

 

Sean D. Cuddigan
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SSA and VA Disability Attorney in Omaha, Nebraska