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Social Security: Continuing Disability Reviews


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Every 1, 3, 5 or 7 years Social Security can and likely will schedule a Continuing Disability Review (CDR also known as a Periodic Review) to see whether the recipient is still disabled enough to get benefits. This review is conducted by the same Disability Determination Service (DDS) office which helped Social Security decide whether you were disabled when you first applied.

There are two types of Continuing Disability Review: Mailer Reviews and Full Medical Reviews.

Social Security will only send forms for a Continuing Disability Review once. If you do not reply, Social Security simply terminates your payments. This is one reason it is very important to notify Social Security of any change of address and read everything you get from them.

Return to work, in and of it self, is not supposed to be grounds for starting a Continuing Disability Review. For more information, click here.

Continuing Disability Reviews: In General

  • Frequency: For information on the frequency of reviews, see Frequency of Reviews.
  • The Notice of Award letter will tell you when the first medical review is scheduled to take place. However, Social Security often has a backlog of Continuing Disability Reviews and often runs behind schedule.
  • If you return to work, it may cause Social Security to move the review date earlier.
  • When you receive a notice about a Continuing Disability Review, it's not unusual to think of these reviews as scary, fearing that the wrong statement will result in a termination of benefits. However, keep in mind that less than 10% of the cases that are reviewed result in a termination of SSDI benefits.

See: Social Security: Continuing Disability Reviews: If An Investigator Comes Calling

Prepare for the next review from the time you receive your continuation letter. See Prepare For A Continuing Disability Review.

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