Even after filing for and actually getting Social Security Disability Insurance benefits following an injury in New Jersey, the journey is far from being completed. To stay qualified, the Social Security Administration (SSA) will review your condition at various times to confirm if you are still unable to work or perform any substantial gainful activity. This process is known as the Continuing Disability Review (CDR).
Continuing disability review in New Jersey
The Social Security Administration (SSA) will review your SSDI eligibility, typically every three to seven years, to determine if your disability continues to exist. Factors like your age, the nature of your disability, and your likelihood to return to work or earn income prompt this review. In some cases, the SSA may decide to conduct a CDR even sooner than three years if they have a reason to believe that your condition has significantly changed.
Other events that may trigger a CDR include:
- A new treatment that comes that could significantly improve your condition
- Experiencing a period of health improvement or recovery
- Pursuing certain types of work activities
- Submitting an application for disability benefits after denial
What to expect during the continuing disability review
When the SSA decides to conduct a CDR, they will mail you a form called a Disability Update Report (SSA-455), which is only two pages containing the status of your health and medical treatments. Depending on your answers here, the SSA might send you a longer form to complete that contains additional medical questions and activities.
At the same time, the SSA may also request specific information from your doctors (using form SSA-454), such as a progress report on your condition or any changes since they last reviewed your case. They might even ask you to have an independent medical exam with a doctor of their choosing.
Once the review is complete, the Social Security Administration will inform you of their decision in writing. The outcome can range from a suspension or discontinuance of the SSDI benefits to simply reaffirming your entitlement.
The Continuing Disability Review (CDR) is an integral part of the Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) process in New Jersey, designed to ensure that beneficiaries are still eligible. The CDR can be complex and overwhelming, but understanding its importance, the events that can trigger a review and what to expect during the process can equip you with the knowledge to navigate this review proficiently.