Struggling with a mental illness is a serious issue. If you’re someone living with a mental illness such as depression, OCD, anxiety disorder or bipolar disorder, then you know it can be a huge strain on your job as well as your personal life. Mental illnesses are often just as serious as physical ones. Fortunately, if you suffer from a debilitating mental illness that makes it difficult to perform your job, you can apply for social security benefits.
However, many people run into a significant challenge: It can be much more difficult to prove to a court the effects of a mental illness as opposed to a physical one. Today I want to share a few tips to keep in mind when applying for social security:
Show a History of Treatment
Proving to the court that you have a history of coping with your mental illness is a good way to demonstrate not only the effects of the illness, but also your desire to get better. This will help your case tremendously.
Receive a Diagnosis from a Psychiatrist or Psychologist
With any disability, the court wants to see that you’ve have sought an expert opinion. A psychiatrist or psychologist will have the training and expertise to give the court a solid basis on which to form their decision.
See a Doctor Before You File for Disability
In order to be approved, not only will you need a diagnosis, but it will need to be a recent one. Remember that in the State of North Carolina, you’ll need to have seen a doctor within in the 90 days before you file.
Take All of Your Prescribed Medicines
Not only does taking your medicine show your interest in improving your condition, it also allows the court to accurately assess your mental health. They want to be able to evaluate your mental state while receiving treatment.
Provide School Records If Filing for Long Term Disability
If possible, it’s recommended that you submit your school records while filing for long term disability. This will allow the court to get a more complete view of your mental history. For instance, they’ll be able to assess previous testing you took, as well as show difficulties you may have struggled with in the past.
As with any case, the best thing you can do is to follow the advice of your attorney. They will be able to instruct you on what you need to submit and what you need to do before filing. At Oxner + Permar, we provide free, 30-minute consultations, so If you have any questions don’t hesitate to contact us.