I just got a letter from Social Security telling me that I had to go see a doctor.

Question:  I just got a letter from Social Security telling me that I had to go see a doctor.  They are sending me to the same doctor that I had to see for the company when I had a compensation case.  I don’t want to see that doctor.  What can I do?

Answer: The Social Security Administration (DDS) wants to send you to a consultative examination.  These examinations are usually of the lowest quality and commonly last no more than five minutes or so.  However, the Social Security Administration (DDS) gives them great weight in deciding your claim for benefits.  In most cases, even though they are not supposed to do so, more weight is given to the opinion of consultative examiner than to the opinion of your treating doctor(s).  That’s why you have to take the consultative examination seriously.

Yes, you can challenge the doctor scheduled to perform your consultative examination.  There are several reasons that exist for you to be able to challenge the doctor.  You can challenge him or her for any “good reason”; if he or she has previously examined you on behalf of an adverse interest (your situation); the doctor saw you in a previous disability denial; the physical location of the examination is not good for you; language problems with the doctor; and the doctor “lacks objectivity” in general.  20 CFR Section 404.1519j.

Interestingly, your treating doctor is supposed to be the preferred choice to perform a consultative examination.  20 CFR Section 404.1519h.  Unfortunately, this very rarely ever happens.  It rarely happens because the Social Security Administration (DDS) does not want it to happen.  They can get a report with much less work for them from one of their doctors.  It does not matter that your doctor could perform a much better examination because he or she knows you much better than any underpaid government consultative doctor.

The problem with government doctors and government psychologist (Social Security Administration does not call them that) is that the vast majority of the time when they perform an examination they do not even have your medical records.  It is beyond belief how the Social Security Administration (DDS) can in good conscience send you for an orthopedic examination without even sending your objective testing such as your X-ray, CT Scan or MRI.  However, even more beyond belief is how the Social Security Administration (DDS) can send you to a doctor or psychologist who has received numerous medical licensure sanctions.  If the person to whom you are being sent is a physician, check out whether he or she has been sanctioned at www.kbml.ky.gov.  If you want to change consultative examiners then you should additionally mention in your letter that the doctor or psychologist to whom you are being sent has been sanctioned.  You will be shocked to find out how many doctors who work for the Social Security Administration (DDS) have been sanctioned for being incompetent.  Why does the Social Security Administration (DDS) continue to use such doctors?  Well, the answer is that these doctors are cheap.  “You get what you pay for.”  Yes it is an old saying, but it is still true.  Regrettably, the Social Security Administration (DDS) continues to refuse to take heed of this advice to the harm of claimants and justice.