Once you go through the long, drawn-out process of getting approved for Social Security benefits you might want to know that it's not necessarily over. The Social Security Administration (SSA) may continue to monitor you and your medical condition, particularly if you fall into certain categories. Read on to learn more.
A medical check
The condition that qualified you to get benefits might fall anywhere on a scale from minor to fatal, and the SSA keeps up with certain medical disorders more closely than others. For example, if an applicant qualified for benefits because of a medical condition that is likely to lead to death in a year or so, then they are probably not going to come under much scrutiny. On the other hand, if the applicant is fairly young and/or has a medical condition that might improve over time, then they may be subject to what is known as continuing disability reviews (CDR).
The frequency of your CDR
Age and the medical condition itself factor into the need for a closer look at an applicant, but they are common for almost anyone receiving benefits after a time. You can expect a CDR to occur about every 3-7 years, in most cases, unless you have a terminal illness.
What happens with a CDR?
When you are approved for benefits you have been evaluated to be unable to do your job, but the SSA understands that some conditions improve enough for you to return to work. They also acknowledge that people may not be exactly forthright in admitting that their condition has improved, thus creating a need to periodically do a check on an applicant's condition.
This review usually consists of having a medical check-up and providing the doctor with some forms to be filled out and returned to the SSA. You may have to send in a short form or it might be a more extensive long form. Once the SSA reviews the forms then you will be informed about the results. If the SSA finds that your condition is improved enough for you to return your job then you will lose your benefits. You are given the opportunity to appeal the ruling, however.
Other CDR triggers
You can alert the SSA to an improvement in your condition as well, which you might do if you are eager to return to work. If you begin to earn a certain amount of income from certain sources then you might also trigger a CDR.
Another issue to be aware of is getting turned-in by another party. For example, if another person witnesses you doing work that you claimed to be unable to perform because of a medical condition then that might trigger a review.
If you have been denied your benefits, either initially or because of a CDR, speak to a Social Security lawyer from a place like Parmele Law Firm, PC about helping you at an appeal hearing.