Dear Social Security Administration:
Thank you for this opportunity to comment on evaluations of trauma related disorders. I agree with the comments submitted by Kevin Liebkemann, Legal Services of New Jersey, Emilia Sicilia, Urban Justice, and Jen Burdick, Community Legal Services. I will not repeat their comments. I want to stress that the failure of decision-makers to consider whether a person with a trauma related condition has created a structured setting that reduces symptoms leads to incorrect findings of 'conflicts' in the evidence/testimony and incorrect lack of credibility findings. Similarly, failure to understand the variety and individualized nature of the symptoms and signs of trauma related conditions, and the fact that evidence of the nature and severity of the condition may come from others than medical providers, also results incorrect decisions based on incorrect findings of conflicts in evidence and incorrect lack of credibility findings. Any new policy statements on the adjudication of trauma related conditions will need to include guidance on these areas.