Consultative Examination

What’s a Consultative Examination and when do I have to undergo one?

Before a decision is made on your disability application, you may be required to undergo a consultative examination (CE). These occur when the Social Security Administration (SSA) determines that the medical evidence available to them is inadequate to establish whether or not you’re disabled.
CE’s are not conducted by doctors who work for SSA, but by independent physicians who contract with SSA to perform these examinations. There are a number of factors which may lead SSA to refer you for a CE. For instance, SSA may feel that there are conflicts or inconsistencies which could not be resolved by going back to the previous physician, or prior experience indicates they may have difficulty getting records from your treatment source.

There are a number of items the consultative examination report must include. While each item is important, there are several which directly impact the claimant and their application. First, the report must provide evidence which can serve as a basis for the assessment of any potential disability. It must also be consistent with the claimant’s medical history and address any abnormalities.

You can read more about the report’s content requirements here.

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