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What is Physical Residual Functional Capacity?

Definition of Physical Residual Functional Capacity

Physical residual functional capacity is the most activity a Social Security Disability claimant can perform despite their physical limitations caused by their mental or physical health condition. Physical residual functional capacity is affected by a Social Security Disability claimant's pain and symptoms. The Social Security Administration reviews a claimant's medical information and all other relevant evidence in their Social Security Disability record to determine their physical residual functional capacity. Information can include not only formal medical records but observations and descriptions from a Social Security Disability claimant's friends, neighbors and family. Residual functional capacity information is used in the Social Security Administration's sequential evaluation process to determine if a claimant can do other work. If a claimant is unable to do their previous job further assessment is done to determine if a Social Security Disability claimant can be retrained to perform other work. The Social Security Administration will review the Social Security Disability claimant's ability to perform specific physical demands such as: walking, sitting, standing, lifting, pushing, pulling, reaching, stooping, crouching, and handling objects. Physical residual functional capacity assessments also include the nature and extent of the claimant's physical limitations and their residual ability to meet the demands of employment on a continuous basis. If a Social Security Disability claimant has multiple impairments the Social Security Administration will consider each of them in totality, regardless of severity. If the disability claimant can not perform relevant work they have done in the last 15 years and can not be retrained for other employment, they will be determined disabled by the Social Security Administration and awarded SSDI or SSI benefits.

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