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What is a Functional Capacity Evaluation?

Depending on the insurance company that you file for long term disability benefits through, you may be asked to complete a functional capacity evaluation. The functional capacity evaluation, otherwise referred to as FCE, is a type of physical exam that tests an applicant’s abilities to perform various activities required for the completion of your job duties. Your ability is measured by the degree to which you can complete those activities. Below is more information about what you can expect during a scheduled functional capacity evaluation. 

What Happens During a Functional Capacity Evaluation

In a functional capacity evaluation for long term disability determination, you are tested by your ability to complete certain activities that may be required for your position at work. When you receive the request to complete a functional capacity exam, you will be provided with information about what to expect during your evaluation. This will include general knowledge about the date, time, and location. Further, it may detail the amount of time it is expected to take. Sometimes, you may be required to appear over the course of two days to complete the evaluation. 

No two functional capacity evaluations are identical, as each exam is tailored to what your position may require you to complete physically. These are based on individual skills and experiences that you have at work. Some basic tests that may be required during most functional capacity exams include treadmill walking, lifting or moving boxes and objects, standing for different lengths of time, kneeling or crouching, walking stairs, lifting weights, and hand-eye coordination tests. 

Can You Prepare for a Functional Capacity Evaluation?

As you get closer to your functional capacity exam, there could be ways to approach preparation for your evaluation. The night prior to your evaluation, it is best to get a good night’s sleep. Lay out comfortable clothing to wear, as any tight or uncomfortable apparel may restrict your range of motion. Place all necessary items for your day, such as a form of identification, medication list, and any assistive medical devices you use, in a bag to bring to your exam. 

On the day of your evaluation, it’s essential to perform at your best and be honest about your capabilities. If you act as if the test is too difficult to complete, the examiner will likely spot your bluff. They are trained to recognize whether a person is acting to deceive them about their disability. However, if you are truly unable to complete the test or are feeling pain, inform the examiner about your limit. This will ensure that you do not harm yourself further. 

Work With a Long Term Disability Lawyer

A functional capacity exam can help your disability claim by allowing your insurance company to recognize how you are limited in your performance. This evaluation provides evidence for your condition. If you are denied benefits after your functional capacity evaluation or if you feel as if your examiner was not impartial in your evaluation, consider reaching out to a disability attorney. The attorneys at Bartolic Law have experience in long term disability pursuits and conflicts. To schedule a consultation and discuss how we can best help you, contact us today.

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