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Opinion Evidence

If you were recently denied Social Security disability benefits, you may want to speak with a Macomb County Social Security disability attorney about the next step. For many people, this involves participating in a hearing before an administrative law judge who works with the Social Security Administration (SSA) to help resolve disputes over benefits. If you decide to submit to a hearing, your Macomb County Social Security disability attorney can call witnesses on your behalf to provide opinion testimony relevant to your condition.

opinion-evidence cycle

Medical Opinions

The SSA can accept medical opinions from your treating physician, but is under no obligation to accept these opinions as fact – and can actually reject opinion evidence from a physician in certain situations. If your treating physician has been working on your case for an extended period of time or is a specialist in the area of medicine encompassing your condition, he can submit a report offering his opinion about your diagnosis, prognosis, treatment or functional limitations. This report can be very influential, even controlling in some scenarios, and your Macomb County Social Security disability attorney will make certain that your doctor submits an opinion letter if applicable.

Personal Opinion

No one knows your physical limitations better than you, and the SSA will consider your personal testimony about your condition, how it limits your day-to-day activities and ability to work. You can submit written statements or you can testify about your limitations during the hearing process. Understand that if you choose to make personal statements about you condition, you need to make certain that they are consistent and congruent with the medical evidence. The SSA will not look favorably upon exaggerated evidence and may even reject your claim if it appears you are lying about your condition. Your Macomb County Social Security disability attorney will explain that during the hearing process, you should not invoke overly emotional responses to questions about your limitations and you should offer short, simple answers.

Opinions from People Who Know You

You may also insert opinion evidence from people who know you or are familiar with you condition and its effects on your daily life. These statements can be submitted via letter to the SSA or by testimony at a disability hearing. The best people to offer testimony are anyone who lives with you, your spouse, children or co-workers.

If you are facing an upcoming hearing and would like additional advice about the SSA and opinion evidence, contact Macomb County Social Security disability attorneys, J.B. Bieske and Jennifer Alfonsi, Attorneys at Law, today at 800-331-3530

J.B. Bieske & Jennifer Alfonsi, Attorneys at Law

19991 Hall Road, Suite 202
Macomb, MI 48044
Phone: 586-977-8100
Fax: 586-977-8444

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