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Disability Payments?


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#1 KELLYB.

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Posted 26 February 2008 - 06:32 PM

Hello all!! I hope everyone is doing well. It's freezing up here in MI., I am TOTALLY & COMPLETELY OVER IT!! If we have one more snow storm...arrgghh :(
So, I am looking for some answers - aren't we all??
I had my disability hearing back in October, after filing back in 2005...being denied...then having to wait for a hearing before an ALJ. On the day of my hearing, they informed me I was "disabled." I was told by my lawyer that I would probably not receive any money until after the first of the year. OK, that was like almost 3 months ago. I have yet to receive a letter telling me how much monthly, how much back pay, when I'll start getting payment, ANYTHING!!!!! I have called my local SS office as well as the 800 number probably about 6 times between the two, since the end of December. They finally told me in mid-January that "there was some kind of delay" with my file, and that all the information was not receieved from my local office, blah blah blah.

So, I guess I am just wondering from anyone out there who was found to be disabled, how long did it take for you to start receiving benefits? I talked to one person who said they actually received their back pay before ANY letter came. And that their monthly benefits followed very soon after, as well as the "break-down" letter. I just can't believe those people can't be specific with you and let you know exactly what they know...you know???

Sorry to rant and rave about the whole deal. I know there are probably many of you out there who are just starting out in this process, and some who are waiting for a hearing yet...some who are just waiting. I feel for you, I really do. I guess at this point, any response would maybe settle my nerves a bit.

Thank you for listening, everyone take care!!

Kelly B.

#2 Peggy

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Posted 27 February 2008 - 06:04 AM

I applied in December and was approved in January. I received a letter right away saying what account the amount would be deposited into and when. I didn't receive any back pay as there is a 6 month waiting period before benefits kick in and that 6 months ate up my back pay so benefits started in February. You should have had a letter by now and when you call and talk to your caseworker at your local office he should be able to pull you up on their computer and tell you exactly what is going on I would assume. Good luck.

Warm hugs.

Peggy

#3 relicmom1

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Posted 27 February 2008 - 04:35 PM

Hello, I went thru the denials and appeals until I had a hearing before an ALJ myself. My initial application was in June of 2004, I was denied and then I retained a lawyer and bgan the appeals process. I was denied ever how many times until you go before the judge. I went before the judge in October of 2005. I received the decision in my favor in January of 2006 and got my first check (and back pay for August 2004 thru Febuary 2006) My back pay started at August 2004 because my last day of work was Febuary 13, 2004 and you have to be disabled for 6 months before you are eligible for benefits. After you have been disabled for 2 years, you them becfome eligible for Medicare. If you have minor children, they are also elible for benefit payments until they are 18 unless they are still in high school when they turn 18. In that case they are eligible until they graduate high school. If they get married before they turn 18 or graduate their benefit stops. I hope this helps some. Keep after them, they do tend to "lose" paperwork. My daughter turned 18 this past January. Last October I got paperwork with a form for the school to fill out proving she was still a high school student and will not graduate until this June. I got the school to do their part and I sent it in. I thought no more about it until I got a letter January 3rd telling me that her benefits had stopped because she turns 18 in January. I got on the phone immediately and the person I talked to put me on hold for about 10 minutes after I explained the situation. When she came back to me on the phone, she told me that "for some reason" the paper work was not entered into their computer when it came in and that she had done it and her benefits would not stop. Now if I hadn't called, her benefits would have stopped in error, so keep after them until you get everything taken care of and if you haven't gotten your payment in a reasonable amount of time, call your attorney. Your attorney will get after them too, because her fee is also being held up :rolleyes: Good Luck!!
Peace :)
Barbara aka relicmom1

#4 peanut

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Posted 27 February 2008 - 05:41 PM

Hey Kelly b.

Sorry you're having difficulties. See if you - or if you have a lawyer - can talk to a supervisor. It's my understanding that you get paid a month after approval.

I applied, 6 months later I was approved with a letter stating the time line with which I'd get paid and how much. There was also some paperwork for direct deposit which we opted for and yup it was in our account like the paperwork said....

peanut

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my HMO makes me wear a helmet...

#5 Colleen

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Posted 27 February 2008 - 11:28 PM

Barbara

When you said you have to be diabled for 6 months, what does that mean? That you haven't been able to go to work for six months? Or your doctors say you are disabled? I am getting ready to submit for disability. I've followed the postings on this subject. I'm going to start on my own first without a lawyer. It sounds like the outcome of getting disability has a lot to do with luck from the beginning of that first interview.

Namaste
Colleen

#6 relicmom1

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Posted 28 February 2008 - 03:19 AM

Colleen,
You have to have unable to work for six months before you are eligible for payment. I stopped working in Feb. 2004, but I applied in May or June of 2004, only 3-4 months after I stopped working because I knew I would not be able to work. and with the denials I thought I woudl get, I wanted to get the proverbial ball rolling. Wen I fianlly got approved and got my first payment, they had to back pay me from August 2004 to March 2006 (that's when I got my first check) I started without a lawyer, but after the first denial, I went ahead and retained one. It's important, if you do get a lawyer, to get one who specializes in Social Security disability. It does seem to be luck of the draw on getting approved quickly, so don't give up! GOOD LUCK!!!!
Peace :)
Barbara aka relicmom1

#7 Sweet

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Posted 28 February 2008 - 06:07 AM

This is a little off the subject, but when approved for disabiity, does a person ever get a "partial" disability? Or is it a matter of yes you are or no you aren't? Does that make sense?
Warm and gentle hugs,

Pamela
ISN Support Specialist
International Scleroderma Network (ISN)

#8 Shelley Ensz

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Posted 28 February 2008 - 07:57 AM

Hi Sweet,

For U.S. Social Security, you are either totally and permanently disabled, or you are not. There is no middle ground, no partial payments.
Warm Hugs,

Shelley Ensz
Founder and President
International Scleroderma Network (ISN)
Hotline and Donations: 1-800-564-7099

The most important thing in the world to know about scleroderma is sclero.org.

#9 Sweet

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Posted 28 February 2008 - 08:24 AM

OK, thanks Shelley
Warm and gentle hugs,

Pamela
ISN Support Specialist
International Scleroderma Network (ISN)

#10 debonair susie

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Posted 28 February 2008 - 11:37 AM

OOps, Shelley... though any of us (those with our illnesses) who would apply would be on total/permanent disability... As a matter of fact, there ARE circumstances when a person would only be on disability temporarily.

Big Hugs,
Susie
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Susie Kraft
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#11 MaryFanPhilly

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Posted 28 February 2008 - 02:57 PM

Just putting my two cents in... most of what I would say has been covered, but the most important thing I think which supported my case was to have COPIES of every single piece of paper, names and dates of who I talked to and what was said. I too applied and was approved immediately, and that was about two years ago. My doctors were terrific and supported me through the entire process. The initial form you fill out has EVERYTHING to do with how they look at cases... I didn't leave out any little thing, even how my stomach is not so good in the morning making it impossible to sit in traffic for a commute. However I do want to add something... SSD has a program through which you can try to go back to work. Your benefits continue during that time with no penalty. If you find that you can't handle it, you are immediately reinstated with no penalties. I think I am going to give it a try since I feel I have plateaued and generally am feeling better than I have in a long while. I don't have anything to lose, so we'll see! Love, Mary
Diffuse sclero; diabetes; hypertension; GERD with Barrett's

#12 Sweet

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Posted 28 February 2008 - 04:08 PM

Mary! It's so nice to see your face again. Missed you around here!

Thanks for the advice. I'm just beginning the application process, gathering records, have appt next Friday with my primary care physician to fill everything out and then I have a phone interview.
Warm and gentle hugs,

Pamela
ISN Support Specialist
International Scleroderma Network (ISN)

#13 MaryFanPhilly

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Posted 29 February 2008 - 12:51 PM

Thanks Pamela! And good luck to you too.... put your thoughts together on paper and have someone else look it over as well. In fact they ask that a family member or friend also write about how the disease affects your life, I had my brother do it for me. KEEP RECORDS OF EVERYTHING! My favorite was when they wanted me to see a psychologist because they asked if my disease depressed me I answered yes- duh. His office was soooo dingy and tired looking, and the questions he asked me! like, did I feel that people on television were ever speaking directly to me...? I had to fight the urge to say no, only Larry King but thought humor wouldn't go over too well. He asked why my disease depressed me and I said, well, let's see YOU get a rare, disabling, incurable and barely treatable disease and see if YOU don't get depressed from time to time. His face said it all. I also called them incessantly and made such a pest of myself I think they approved me just to shut me up. They did explain the process,, how it goes from your local SS office to the state then back to the local office, so ask lots of questions. It is mostly paperwork. Oh, one other piece of advice and an important one.... I went to a hand specialist and they took many measurements of my range of motion. I think that was huge. So if you have any contractures, sclerodactyly, ulcerations or carpal tunnel problems, and who doesn't? GO TO A HAND SPECIALIST. Keep on keepin on! Love, Mary
Diffuse sclero; diabetes; hypertension; GERD with Barrett's

#14 MaryFanPhilly

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Posted 29 February 2008 - 12:58 PM

one more thing... once you are approved, the SS office will review your case from time to time. Usually 2-4 years after the first approval, but since our chances of improvement/cure are extremely unlikely, most cases like ours are not reviewed for 5-7 years after approval. That's a good thing!
Diffuse sclero; diabetes; hypertension; GERD with Barrett's

#15 peanut

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Posted 29 February 2008 - 08:18 PM

I was told if you're young like I am the review is every 3 years and if you're older its every 8 years.

I typed up my answers in a document, then had my hubby tweak my responses before pasting them into the on line form. It does help to have an outsiders perspective. Sometimes they do ask dumb questions but only cause they have to fill out an eligibility protocol, not so they can be annoying. I didn't stalk my SS peoples but I lucked out and got a very empathetic evaluator sometimes its not always the case.

peanut

You can deprive the body but the soul needs chocolate
my HMO makes me wear a helmet...

#16 SpaceysChick

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Posted 01 March 2008 - 02:55 PM

Just putting in my input on the disability...

I applied November of 2003, was denied, and put in an appeal. Had the trial in March of 2005, and was granted disability in May of 2005. So yeah. that's my story...

I had to be re-evaluated last year. and they found that I was still disabled and could keep my ssi.

I hope things work for you faster. I know what a pain it can all be. my heart goes out to you!

#17 Alice02

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Posted 02 March 2008 - 06:32 AM

Dear Mary,

Thank you so much for your advises on disability’s topic. I appreciate your tips on hand specialist, especially that I do have calcium on my finger. Also seeing get a psychiatric and I just would like to add that love what you said about your meeting with the psychiatrist. I read a book called Disability Workbook and has some forms one of them is a list of conditions causing impairment. And this list has many conditions, is that what you meant when you wrote that you list you didn’t leave anything out? I’m going to apply by the end of this month. Where I can get initial forms?


Warm regards

Alice

#18 Angie

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Posted 02 March 2008 - 10:59 AM

Hello All,

Yes, I've also experienced alot of confussion with social security staff getting my SSDI benefits. My story is ... I applied for SSDI (via the Internet) in May of 2007. I received word from my local social security office in November 2007 that I had been approved, but I had to apply and exhaust (one year) state disability in tandem with my SSDI. Although I had been approved as of May of 2007 there is a five month waiting period before my monthly benefits kicked in August of 2007. But because the local social security worker put in that I would receive the maximum benefit from the state --- $3800 per month - I wish!!!--- I only received $35 from SSDI. Once I got that straightened out, one day in February I received a lump sum back payment in my checking account. However, I only received $35 once again in February, so it still isn't fixed. Thank goodness I am a social worker by profession and I understand somewhat how this system works.

In California (not sure everywhere else), we have a program called "Ticket to Work". It allows folks on SSDI to supplement their SSDI income by making no more than $640 per month without losing their SSDI or Medicare. Social security considers the $640 to be unsustainable to live by itself. As I mentioned before, it might be different in each state. Also, the ticket to work program is administrated by an outside agency and if you work with this agency, you will not have to go thru the periodic medical reviews of your SSDI.

I don't know if this helps ... just keep on the folks at social security. I've read many articles how overwhelmed and short staffed they are and it is only getting worse now with us baby boomers aging.

Good luck to everyone out there!
Angie
Fremont, CA

#19 Sweet

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Posted 03 March 2008 - 07:48 AM

Mary and others,

Thanks again for this great information!! I tell ya Mary, sometimes I don't have much of a sense of Humor left when it comes to people that don't get it. I think I would have jumped down that guys throat at his stupid quesitons. :)
Warm and gentle hugs,

Pamela
ISN Support Specialist
International Scleroderma Network (ISN)

#20 Shelley Ensz

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Posted 03 March 2008 - 08:45 AM

I'd like to clarify my statement in regard to (U.S.) Social Security Disability. That is, the initial qualification is permanent and total disability. After receiving benefits, many people recover a little and want to go to work, at least part time and sometimes full time. They have a special Back to Work program that Mary referred to. But nobody is eligible for that during the period of qualifying for benefits.

So always check with your doctors, a good disability lawyer, and with social security before doing anything drastic -- like quitting a job, taking on another job, or applying for benefits.
Warm Hugs,

Shelley Ensz
Founder and President
International Scleroderma Network (ISN)
Hotline and Donations: 1-800-564-7099

The most important thing in the world to know about scleroderma is sclero.org.