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What Is the Role Of The Vocational Expert?

What role does a Vocational Expert play during step 5 of the sequential evaluation process? First, a vocational expert cannot be used to defeat the medical-vocational guidelines. The Medical-Vocational Guidelines is a lengthy document that is comprised of a general rule and 82 separate rules. The purpose of these guidelines is to administratively reflect the SSA's analysis of the impact of the medical factor of disability (and RFC) in combination of the statutory vocational factors of disability -- age, education, and previous work experience to determine an individual's ability to adjust to other work.

The medical-vocational guidelines allow the Administrative Law Judge to take notice of the claimant's work load (sedentary, light, medium, heavy, or very heavy exertional RFC) and the claimant's age, education, and work experience and determine whether the claimant can make a vocational adjustment to work that exists in significant numbers in the national economy. Sometimes, based on the claimant's age, work experience, training, and residual functional capacity the grid will determine that someone is disabled. A vocational expert's testimony cannot overcome the finding of disability based on the grid rules. Other times, the grid will determine that they are not disabled and can transfer work skills.

If you believe you are disabled and should be receiving Social Security Disability Benefits, contact a Dallas Social Security Disability Attorney today.