Mental Capacity Assessment & RFC-Mental for Disability Benefits
The Mental Capacity Assessment (MCA), or RFC-Mental, is one of the most powerful tools to get you approved. It is a simple form for your doctor to complete, containing questions about specific limitations related to your mental disability (or disabilities). The questions are directly related to Social Security’s, listings, or guidelines for approval.
The MCA can be more helpful to your claim than regular medical records. For example, a claimant has severe anxiety and depression. Her medical records may state this, but the records are vague about how it affects her everyday activities. Her psychologist states on the MCA that she has difficulty adapting to certain situations, interacting with coworkers or customers, and has concentration issues, and that she would likely miss work four or more days a month. This gives Social Security a much better understanding of how her disability affects her and prevents her from working.
The strongest factor in your disability claim will be your doctor. If your psychologist (or psychiatrist, or other approved physician) is supportive of your applying for benefits and willing to submit RFC forms and any other documentation needed, you have a great chance of being approved. If not, you may need to find another doctor who will provide Social Security with the information they need. Remember that with a MCA, the person signing the form should have a Ph.D. and be qualified to complete the form, not an assistant.
Although Social Security does use MCA forms, they are mostly utilized by disability attorneys. If you do not have a disability representative, you can get a copy of the MCA from Social Security to give to your doctor. For many reasons, it is usually much more effective for you, as the patient, to ask your doctor to complete the form than for Social Security or even your disability attorney to do so. However, remember that if your doctor is not supportive or does not believe you are disabled, his or her answers may not help much and could even hurt your claim.
For more information on Mental Capacity Assessments or to receive a copy, contact your disability representative or Social Security.
Author – Brad Myler