Bi-Polar disorder and claims for Social Security Disability in the Daytona Beach and Ormond Beach area

In my Ormond Beach, FL office, I have seen a recent increase in the number of claims for Social Security Disability based on Bi-Polar disorder and depression.  Given the current economic climate including staggering job losses and a depressed housing market , I am not surprised by the number of people suffering from depression.  However, making a successful claim for Social Security Disability based on Bi-polar disorder or depression is difficult without extremely good medical evidence from either a psychologist or psychiatrist, preferably both. 

Many applicants that I speak with are on some type anti-depressant medications that may have been prescribed by a family doctor or general practitioner.  Although the prescribed medications would appear to support that the applicant in fact suffers from some type of depression or other mental disorder, medications alone will likely do little in establishing disability under Social Security unless the applicant treats with or has at least been evaluated by a mental health professional.

If a claim for disability includes a psychiatric component such as depression or bi-polar, it is very likely that the Social Security Administration will set up a comprehensive examination (CE) with a psychologist to "assist" in determining whether the applicant is disabled.  NEWS FLASH!! These doctors are paid by Social Security and very rarely do these doctor's opinions support a claim for disability.  Therefore, if an applicant is going to allege a psychiatric component for disability, then it is absolutely imperative that the applicant seeks treatment or at least an evaluation with a mental health care professional of their own.

Claims for Social Security Disability based solely on a psychiatric condition, while not impossible to prove, are at the very least very difficult.  If a psychiatric condition is the sole basis for disability, for instance, Bi-Polar disorder, then the applicant will need a long history of medical care with a mental health care professional.  Not only will there need to be a long history of care and treatment, but the treatments will need to be largely unsuccessful and the prognosis "guarded".  In other words, claims for disability based solely on psychiatric conditions need to establish that the individual is essentially incapable of functioning outside a structured setting and incapable of following even the simplest instructions. 

I also hear many clients tell me that they suffer from Bi-Polar or depression, but do not have health insurance or the money to pay for medications and doctors visits.  This is a difficult situation and one that the Social Security Administration will have little sympathy for.  The bottom line is that applicants must have medical evidence to improve the chances of a successful Social Security Disability claim.  This is even more true for those who are alleging a psychiatric condition as part of the disability claim.

If you have questions regarding a claim for Social Security Disability, then please contact Johnson & Gilbert, P.A. for free consultation at 1-800-556-8890.