The disability application process is long and involved. The Social Security Administration (SSA) asks for many details and the application can sometimes seem overwhelming for this reason.
It is important however that you do not leave anything blank on any of the forms that the SSA requires during the application and review processes. Failing to answer all questions can lead to a variety of problems, including:
- Delays in Processing – blanks on any application forms may lead the SSA to delay your claim. They may need to seek more information from other sources, and they may also send you additional forms to fill out.
- Further Questions – failing to provide answers only leads to more questions from the SSA. Every question posed on the disability application provides the SSA a piece of essential information that is required for reviewing your eligibility for benefits.
While not every question on the application may apply to you specifically, you must still answer it. If any question isn’t applicable in your case, then you should write “N/A” as your answer, which stands for “not applicable.” This will keep the SSA from having further questions for you about that particular topic.
- Consultative Exams – a lack of information in your application or medical records can lead the SSA to require consultative exams. These are doctor’s appointments with contracted physicians that provide the SSA with an independent evaluation of your medical, mental, or emotional condition.
- Denials – too many blanks on a disability application can lead to a denial of benefits, because the SSA simply doesn’t have the information necessary to make a decision in your favor. Failing to provide critical information anywhere on the application can also cause you to be denied benefits, even if you fill out most of the application.
The more thorough your application is, the more likely you are to be approved for disability benefits. The SSA needs as much information as possible to make a favorable decision on your claim. Leaving blanks only leaves the SSA with more questions and without the details they need to see exactly how your condition affects your daily life.
If your disability doesn’t exactly match or meet a Blue Book listing, then you need to be especially concerned with providing additional details. Your medical records will give the SSA a lot of the information they need, but you should also be sure to provide as much information as possible on your application for benefits.
The SSA provides space on the application and on various forms for you to add more information than their questions cover. Be sure to give a lengthy and accurate description of how your daily symptoms, complications, and even your required medications or other treatments affect your ability to perform everyday tasks. You should include the limitations you experience in your personal and home life as well as how your disability limits your ability to complete job functions.