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What to Expect at Your Social Security Disability Interview

Cannon Law Offices, PLLC March 28, 2024

When faced with the daunting prospect of a Social Security Disability (SSD) interview, knowing what to expect can significantly ease your mind.  

An SSD interview, typically conducted at your local Social Security Office or over the phone, is a crucial step in your SSD claim process as it provides an opportunity for you to present your case. 

While this interview will come during an understandably stressful time of your life, it's in your best interest to go into it prepared. Be ready to answer questions about when your condition became disabling, the names of medications you're taking, and other relevant information. If you plan to apply for Supplementary Security Income (SSI), you'll also need to provide your financial information. 

You don't need to prepare alone. If you need guidance from an attorney in North Carolina, reach out to Cannon Law Offices, PLLC.  

1. You'll Need to Provide Documentation

The importance of thoroughly prepared documentation for your SSD interview cannot be overstated. This includes all medical records, doctor's notes, and reports that pertain to your disabling condition.  

Additionally, you should bring any medications you are currently taking or documentation for any prescriptions you have been given.  

Other valuable documents might include a detailed list of previous employment and how your disability has impacted your ability to work. Keeping everything organized and easily accessible can expedite the interview process and enhance the clarity of your case.  

Remember, these documents serve as the foundation of your SSD claim. They provide the tangible evidence needed to substantiate your disability and its effect on your life. 

2. You'll Be Asked to Provide a Detailed Account of Your Medical Condition

A detailed account of your medical condition involves not only a thorough description of your medical diagnosis but also an explanation of how these conditions affect your daily life. Be prepared to discuss the severity of your symptoms, the limitations they impose on your daily activities, and how they have impacted your ability to work.  

It's beneficial to provide specific examples, such as difficulties standing for prolonged periods, challenges concentrating, or needing assistance to complete basic tasks. Furthermore, mentioning the frequency of doctor visits, any hospitalizations, and treatments or therapies you are undergoing can add depth to your account. Providing a comprehensive view of your health and its impacts helps the interviewer understand the full extent of your disability. 

3. You'll Need to Share Your Recent Work History

You will need to provide a comprehensive overview of your work history and employment background, focusing on the jobs you've held in the last 15 years.  

The examiner is particularly interested in understanding the type of work you did, the duration of each employment you had, and your reasons for leaving. It's essential to elaborate on how your disability has altered your ability to perform your previous job functions.  

If your condition has forced you to reduce your working hours, seek lighter duties, or even leave the workforce altogether, these details must be clearly communicated. Additionally, discussing any attempts to re-enter the workforce or to find employment more suited to your current capabilities can further illustrate the impact of your disability. Be honest and thorough when describing your work history, as it provides crucial context for how your disability affects your professional life. 

4. You Should Expect Follow-up Questioning

The goal of your SSD interview is for the interviewer to understand the severity of your condition and its impact on your life.  

Hence, they may ask follow-up questions to gather more information or clarify what you have said. These questions can feel invasive or repetitive at times, but it's essential to answer them truthfully and accurately. If there is something you don't understand or cannot recall, be honest and mention that as well. The interviewer is not trying to catch you in a lie; rather they aim to acquire a complete picture of your disability.  

In case you do not understand the question or cannot provide an answer that accurately represents your situation, it's helpful to ask for clarification or to request a break to collect your thoughts. 

Our team's extensive practice in Social Security disability law helps us guide our clients on the types of questions to expect and how to address them thoroughly. If you need help preparing or legal advice, contact Cannon Law Offices, PLLC. 

What Comes Next?

After the interview, your claims representative will review your case, although this process can take some time. If your claim is approved, you'll receive a "Notice of Award" letter that outlines the benefits you are entitled to.  

If you're denied SSD benefits, don't despair - many initial claims are rejected. You still have options for appeal and can even request an on-the-record decision in some cases. Your attorney can help you navigate this process and ensure that your rights are protected. 

Our team, under the guidance of Attorney Richard L. Cannon, III, is committed to staying engaged with our clients, providing updates, and preparing you for what to expect moving forward. 

Let Us Help You

At Cannon Law Offices, PLLC, we believe in a personalized, empathetic approach to legal assistance. Richard L. Cannon, III’s life-long commitment to his community and his profound understanding of the law equip him to offer professional guidance that resonates with respect and dignity for our client's unique situations. Facing a Social Security Disability interview can be challenging, but with our help and expertise, you can approach it with confidence and clarity.