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What if my disability benefits are being reviewed?

Missourians who have a condition, illness or disability that warrants Social Security disability benefits should be cognizant of the reality that the Social Security Administration will, intermittently, review the disability to determine if the person still qualifies for benefits. Receiving the letter informing you of the disability review might be frightening, but it is not necessarily something to be overly concerned about. Understanding how this process works is essential, especially the reasons why the SSA might stop disability benefits.

The person's medical condition will be assessed with information from medical professionals and the medical records. There might be a need for more information. If that is the case, the person will be sent for a special examination for which the SSA will pay. The SSA will judge the current condition vs. what the previous medical review said. If other health problems have come up, that will be considered. If the medical condition has improved, the SSA will decide if it has improved enough so the person can go back to work and the benefits should stop. It is also important to consider the kind of work the person can do.

The benefits will stop if it is decided that the person has improved sufficiently to work. The benefits will also stop in the following circumstances: if the person can work because of medical advances and technology or vocational training; if there was a mistake to approve benefits in the past; if the person is not adhering to the doctor's treatment protocol and does not have a good reason for doing so and if the person could work if they adhered to the treatment; if false or misleading information had been provided with a previous decision; if there is a lack of cooperation without good reason; or if the person is working and the monthly earnings - on average - are considered substantial gainful work. If the benefits are discontinued, the person has the right to file an appeal.

When a person who receives disability benefits is informed there will be a review, it is important to understand the process and what to do if the benefits are stopped. Having legal assistance is crucial to a case before and after the review if the benefits are stopped for any reason. Contacting a legal firm that is experienced in all areas of SSD claims can help.

Source: ssa.gov, "How We Decide if You Still Have a Qualifying Disability," accessed on Feb. 19, 2018

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