I will BET you didn’t know this about applying for Social Security disability:
Make sure everything is consistent the whole way through all of your paperwork and conversations. Keep copies for yourself …. they do read all of the forms. That is why I am saying that you must be consistent the whole way through. It is all logged in and if you have to go before a judge he goes over all of it, too. He will actually refer to certain sections that were filled out, etc.
I came across the above advice on Gather (links are dead – wah-wah!) about keeping copies of all the forms Social Security asks you to fill out.
This is spot on! I have seen this happen many times. If you say something at your hearing that is inconsistent with your answer on a form, the judge may call you on it. Even worse, the judge may find that you are not credible. One of the main purposes of your hearing is to let the judge see you in person and make a credibility assessment. If the judge does not think you are credible, well… that is not good for your case.
If you can, it is useful to have a lawyer read over the forms and point out inconsistencies and show you how your words may be misinterpreted to mean something completely different from what you intended.