Disability Law Group: March Case Spotlight

Disability Law Group attorney and partner, Randall Mansour, recently received a ‘Fully Favorable’ decision for one of his clients following a hearing before an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ). Mr. Mansour reviewed the claimant’s entire disability file, took great care in ensuring his medical file was up-to-date, and even drafted a Medical Source Statement for the claimant’s doctor to review and complete. Medical Source Statements that assess an applicant’s Residual Functional Capacity (RFC) (or maximum ability to perform work-activities given their individual limitations), can be helpful in disability cases. These assessments can help the ALJ, or the Social Security Administration, to understand the severity of symptoms, diagnoses, response to treatment, and work-related limitations.

Certain limitations for work may relate to the individual’s physical impairments, such as the ability to sit, stand, walk, bend, climb, lift, carry, finger and feel objects, reach, and more. Mental and cognitive limitations may also be assessed by way of a Medical Source Statement, and the factors considered may include the person’s ability to maintain focus and concentration, get along with other people, respond to criticism from supervisors, and deal with normal work stress, among others. In a disability case before the Social Security Administration, the applicant’s exertional and non-exertional limitations must all be considered, taken together, and how they may impact work. 

In this case, the Social Security Disability application was filed in December of 2018 which is also the month when the disability began. While the application was denied by Social Security at the initial application stage, our team, at Disability Law Group, acted swiftly to file an appeal so that the client could have a hearing before an ALJ. Once the date was scheduled, Mr. Mansour prepared his client for what to expect – from advising who would be a part of the hearing process to helping him understand questions he could expect to be asked and how to best respond, honestly and completely.

Unfortunately, due to circumstances outside of his control, the client was unable to consistently see his doctors for about 6 months while going through the disability process. However, as soon as he could, he immediately resumed care, seeing his specialists and mental health therapists regularly again. While the Judge seemed reluctant to award benefits back to the date requested due to the gap in the treatment record, Randall convinced her otherwise. Attorney Mansour provided detailed opening and closing arguments during the hearing, and submitted a written brief in support, to help the ALJ understand the unique facts of this case that merit an approval back to December of 2018. Mr. Mansour worked closely with the client’s mental health specialist to draft a thorough Medical Source Statement, bolstering his argument and the facts of the case. Ultimately, the ALJ agreed and approved the client’s Social Security Disability case back to December 2018, allowing for back-pay benefits, future monthly payments, and Medicare coverage. The client was especially relieved to have insurance, allowing him to maintain his critical treatment.

While the disability hearing process may seem overwhelming and difficult, an experienced attorney can help you understand your options and ensure you are prepared at every step. If you or a loved one is unable to work full-time due to your medical condition(s), whether you are looking to apply, have already been denied, or are awaiting your court date, you can call and speak with one of our attorneys to help you win the benefits you deserve. We will fight alongside you to make sure you receive the benefits you deserve. Call us today to schedule your free consultation. 800-838-1100.