Woman with a fracture at the doctor's office.

Want to Take a Break from Medical Treatment? It May Impact Your SSD Benefits

Whether or not someone is entitled to receive Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits depends upon their medical records. It’s the Social Security Administration’s (SSA) responsibility to look through your medical history to determine if your disability qualifies you.

In order to receive SSD benefits, an applicant must suffer from an impairment that has lasted or is expected to last at least 12 consecutive months. That’s why receiving a set treatment plan from your doctor is so important. In addition to taking steps to best minimize or treat your condition, it also serves to help you obtain SSD benefits for doing so. Therefore, if the SSA notices a gap in your treatment for no known reason, it will assume that you are better and no longer disabled for purposes of SSD benefits. 

Why Would You Stop Treatment?

Someone may stop his or her treatments for a variety of reasons. Such reasons include the following:

  • You have improved as much as is possible.

Unfortunately, sometimes you can only do so much to improve an illness or condition. If you have sought the recommended treatments but your physician decides that nothing else can be done, he or she may decide that you’ve reached the maximum medical improvement that is possible. In this case, the SSA will look at your relevant medical history. 

  • You can no longer afford your treatment.

Medical care is not cheap. Your treatment may no longer be affordable for you, which often occurs because your disability prevents you from working. In cases in which you have insufficient health insurance or are unable to access more affordable medical care, it will not impact your ability to be approved for SSD benefits. 

  • You are understandably hesitant to undergo surgery. 

Choosing to undergo surgery is a big decision. If you fail to go through with a surgery that your doctor recommends it could be considered non-compliance with your treatment plan. But this depends upon the circumstances of each case. For instance, if you’ve tried the same surgery 3 times and it did not work, it could be reasonable that you haven’t done it a fourth time; it just depends. 

  • You are mentally impaired or have a mental disability.

If someone suffers from a mental impairment or disability and it causes them to fail to seek recommended treatment, it doesn’t automatically mean they are not able to receive SSD benefits. This is especially true if the reason they are seeking SSD benefits is because of their mental disability. 

To put it simply, it’s always wise to listen to your doctor and what he or she recommends to treat your condition. While failing to comply with treatment may prevent you from receiving SSD benefits, there are situations in which taking a break is considered reasonable. Always be sure to have detailed medical records no matter what. 

The Las Vegas SSD Attorneys at Roeschke Law, LLC Can Help

If you or a loved one is struggling with a disability that prevents you from working, you may not know how to proceed. Fortunately, the attorneys at Roeschke Law, LLC can help. We understand the impact that a disability can have on your physical, emotional, and financial health. That’s why it’s our mission to help you. To learn more, or to schedule a consultation, contact us today!