A consultative examination, often referred to as CE for short, is an additional medical examination ordered by the Social Security Administration (SSA). It is conducted by a licensed medical professional at no cost to the claimant. The medical professionals who conduct consultative examinations are independently contracted with the SSA to perform these exams, and they are required to provide a non-biased opinion based on the medical evidence available. The ultimate purpose of a consultative examination is to provide the SSA with an opinion of the claimant’s various disability limitations and conditions.
Why Does my Case Require a Consultative Examination?
Many claimants assume the ordering of a consultative examination somehow means their case will be denied, but this simply isn’t true. There are many reasons why a consultative examination would be ordered, and most of those reasons have very little to do with the success of a claim. In order to render a fully-informed decision, the SSA must have sufficient medical evidence submitted to the record. A consultative examination is most commonly ordered on cases where there is not enough medical evidence available. Consultative examinations are also often ordered on cases where the claimant hasn’t seen their doctor in a long time or only saw their doctor sporadically.
Ultimately, the aim of the consultative examination is to add evidence, in the form of an opinion, to the claim. The medical professional who conducted the consultative examination will submit a written report about the results of the examination to the record. The written report will likely include a diagnosis, prognosis of the alleged impairments, and an opinion about what limitations the claimant has. It will also include the results of any test conducted at the consultative examination such as an x-ray, MRI, or other appropriate medical tests performed.
What if I Refuse to attend my Consultative Examination?
It is strongly recommended that the claimant attend the consultative examination once it has been scheduled. Failure to attend could lead to a dismissal of the claim, so it is wise to comply. Consultative examinations tend to be brief, and the medical professional will only gather the information that is absolutely necessary for a decision to be made.
Do You Need Legal Advice from an Experienced Social Security Attorney?
It can be a challenge to navigate the SSA rules and regulations, but you don’t have to go at it alone. When dealing with such circumstances, it is to your advantage to seek legal advice from a skilled social security attorney. With an experienced advocate in your corner, you will push toward a positive outcome for your legal case.
Whitcomb, Selinsky, PC and their sister firm, the Rocky Mountain Disability Law Center, has demonstrated skill and experience dealing with SSDI, SSI, and related matters. If you need legal advice, please do not hesitate to contact us for assistance. You can reach the attorneys at Whitcomb, Selinsky, PC or the Rocky Mountain Disability Law Center by phone at 866-476-4558 (toll-free) and 303-534-1958 (toll) or online by completing a simple form on our website.