The Medical Improvement Review Standard During Continuing Disability Reviews

Monday, May 19, 2014
Report Number: 
Report Type: 
Audit Report
Office Affiliation: 

Under the Medical Improvement Review Standard (MIRS), an individual’s disability continues unless the (1) disabling condition has improved since the last favorable disability determination and (2) individual can engage in substantial gainful activity.

SSA may apply an exception to MIRS. The exceptions allow a finding that disability ceased in limited situations without showing medical improvement occurred, but evidence clearly showed the person should no longer be, or should never have been, considered disabled.

The purpose of this report was to (a) determine whether SSA would consider beneficiaries disabled using the Initial Disability Standard, rather than MIRS, during continuing disability reviews (CDR) and (b) evaluate data on the MIRS exceptions.