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How Will Residual Functional Capacity Impact My Disability Claim?

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How Will Residual Functional Capacity Impact My Disability Claim?

How Will Residual Functional Capacity Impact My Disability Claim?

Several steps are involved in the disability benefits application process. An important part of this process is called a residual functional capacity evaluation. This step is what helps determine the severity of your disability and how much the disability interferes with work performance. Be sure to ask a Wilmington disability lawyer for help if you have any questions.


A residual functional capacity evaluation is used by the Social Security Administration (SSA) to determine eligibility for disability benefits. This eligibility involves assessing multiple aspects of how the disability impacts daily functioning. Information like this How Will Residual Functional Capacity Impact My Disability Claim?can be used to measure how much work performance might be impacted by the disability.

Disability claims can be affected by the results of residual functional capacity evaluations. If a residual functional capacity evaluation reveals little to no impact on work performance, then the chances of receiving disability benefits might be lower. In other words, your eligibility for disability benefits can be weakened or strengthened by a residual functional capacity evaluation.

Licensed professionals are usually the ones who conduct residual functional capacity evaluations. Standardized assessments, physical evaluations or tests, and mental skills assessments are different ways these professionals may conduct the evaluation. From these results, a conclusion will be generated about how much your disability impacts your ability to work.

The SSA may also consider any medical evidence you submitted along with the results of the residual functional capacity evaluation. Consultative examinations might be ordered when contradictions arise or when more information is needed. Try contacting a Wilmington disability lawyer for more information about this process and how to prepare.


There are four types of residual functional capacity that are examined. These include physical abilities, mental abilities, other abilities affected by impairments, and total limiting effects. The measurement of physical abilities focuses on how the disability impacts physical tasks at work. This includes walking, lifting, carrying, pushing, and other physical actions at work.

Mental abilities include any work skills related to problem-solving, following work instructions, and interacting with customers. This also includes how the disability hinders understanding, memory, and responses to others. Other abilities affected by impairments consider specific disabilities like:

  • Skin impairments
  • Vision problems
  • Hearing problems
  • Epilepsy

This involves evaluating how environmental factors may interact with the disability in a way that affects work performance. Your ability to do past work is also considered in this category. Do not panic if medical evidence and other results do not meet any of these requirements.

Total limiting effects examine all of the information about your disability together to determine your eligibility. Non-medical evidence, medical evidence, pain severity, and other relevant factors are all taken into consideration.


Navigating various disability evaluations can be stressful. Feel free to ask a Delaware disability attorney for guidance if you have questions about your disability evaluation. Start by contacting Edelstein Martin & Nelson today at (302) 295-5050 for a free consultation about your disability claim. Our legal team might be able to help you start receiving disability benefits. We serve clients in Wilmington, DE.

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