Federal Court Rules on Intellectual Disability

Posted on Jun 17, 2015

In a recent Federal Court of Appeals decision, the Court addressed whether or not a Social Security Judge was correct in accepting a medical opinion that a Claimant's intellectual abilities were greater than those suggested by IQ testing.

At the Social Security hearings level, the Administrative Law Judge seized upon a medical opinion suggesting that the Claimant's intellectual abilities on examination were greater than those suggested by prior IQ testing. The Judge also relied upon the fact that Claimant's everyday activities supported a finding that claimant was "malingering," or faking her symptoms. The Court of Appeals concluded that the Claimant's complete testimony regarding her daily activities, along with her reports to a treating physician, showed that Claimant's limitations were in fact consistent with previous IQ testing.

In many Social Security Disability cases, whether a Claimant is found disabled depends upon the Judge's  comparison of a Claimant's everyday activities with medical opinions about the extent nature of limitations. Sometimes, the ALJ's opinions are found invalid. If you have a Social Security Disability claim, and wonder whether there sufficient medical opinion evidence to support the claim, contact us at 503-325-8600. We can evaluate your claim, and let you know where you stand.


Joe Di Bartolomeo
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