Malingering and how to address the accusation with Social Security Disability


If it has been noted by either one of your own doctors or a doctor that you were sent to by Social Security that you might be malingering, then it need to be address. Malingering is just a fancy word for faking or exaggerating your symptoms for the purpose of getting something. In this case, it would be Social Security Disability. The best way to proceed is to try to get the accusation addressed prior to your hearing.

If the claim was made by the doctor Social Security sent you to, then you can use the “treating physician rule” which states, that your own doctor is in a better position to know if you are exaggerating your symptoms since they have been treating you for a longer duration of time. Your attorney may want to submit a brief on your behalf addressing the malingering issue and the fact that your own doctor’s opinion should hold precedence.

If it is your doctor that has noted the possibility of faking symptoms, then you have a tougher row to hoe! If it is just one of your doctors that have noted this, you can accentuate the fact that it is only one out of numerous doctors that you have seen for your disability. You can also get statements from people who know about your disability to use in contesting the malingering claim.

It would be best to avoid the claim of malingering in the first place. There are things that doctors look for when claiming that a person could be malingering. Some of the common signs of malingering are overstating or making up symptoms, not providing your best effort on tests such as tests for strength or mental limitations, or requesting medications by name.

Best case scenario, is to avoid the accusation in the first place. If that is not possible, try to get it addressed prior to the hearing and as a last resort, address it at the hearing. Do not just ignore it and hope that the Administrative Law Judge will not bring it up. This probably would not work out in your best interest.

Written by Hoglund Law

The attorneys of Hoglund law are licensed in Minnesota, Wisconsin and Ohio. Hoglund, Chwialkowski & Mrozik, PLLC is based in Roseville, Minnesota. In addition to handling cases involving bankruptcy & social security, Hoglund, Chwialkowski & Mrozik, PLLC handles faulty drugs and toxic exposure.

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