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I was denied Social Security Disability. What can I do?

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Learn about the Social Security appeals process to follow when you have been denied Social Security Disability and how an attorney can help your appeal.

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Watch the Video: "I was denied Social Security Disability. What can I do?"

The Three Levels of the Social Security Appeals Process

It can be frustrating and disappointing when you are denied Social Security Disability, but a denial does not have to be the end of the story. You can appeal the adverse decision. In fact, you can appeal three times within the Social Security system. The three levels of appeal within Social Security’s system are reconsideration, hearing, and Appeals Council review. You could be approved at any of these appeals. However, if you are not, you still have the legal right to pursue your claim in Federal court.

Expert Legal Assistance for your Social Security Appeal

If you did not have a Social Security lawyer help you with your initial claim and you have been denied, now is a good time to hire an attorney who is experienced in Social Security Disability to help you determine what is necessary for a successful appeal. For more information on how a Social Security lawyer can help you appeal, please see our articles “How Can a Social Security Disability Lawyer Help Me Get Social Security Benefits?” and “Do I Really Have to Hire a Lawyer for My Social Security Disability Claim?”

Reasons for a Social Security Disability Denial

If you are indeed disabled according to Social Security rules, your claim could have been denied for any number of reasons. For example, perhaps you forgot to include or didn’t know to include some aspect of your medical history. Or, maybe your doctor’s report didn’t address everything Social Security needed to fully understand your condition. In these cases, having an expert representative review your claim can help you identify the additional information that you or your doctor needs to submit.

Payment Continuation During Appeal

If the Social Security Administration has notified you that your Social Security Disability benefits are being terminated because they have found that you are no longer medically disabled, you can have your benefit payments continued while the appeal is decided. To get payment continuation, you must appeal and request payment continuation within ten days of receiving the termination notice. One thing to consider when deciding to request continued benefits is that, if the claim-closure decision is upheld, you may have to repay the continued benefits.

Social Security Request for Reconsideration

The first level of appeal is a reconsideration. At this level, your claim file, your statement of why you disagree with the denial and any new evidence that you submit with your appeal will be reviewed by claims examiners and physicians who were not involved in reviewing your claim the first time. If they now find that you meet the requirements for disability, your claim will be approved. For more information about reconsiderations, visit our article “What Is a Social Security Request for Reconsideration?”

Social Security Disability Hearings

If you are denied a second time, you can appeal again, this time requesting a hearing. Once you file the hearing request, it typically takes about fifteen months to get your hearing scheduled.
Hearings are usually held in person within seventy-five miles of your home, but, in some circumstances they may be held by video conferencing. At a hearing you, or you and your attorney, will present your case to an Administrative Law Judge, sometimes referred to as an “ALJ.” You can submit affidavits and call witnesses at the hearing. Sometimes the ALJ will ask a medical or vocational expert to testify, and you or your attorney will have the opportunity to question these experts. For more information about Social Security Disability hearings, please see the several articles we offer on hearings, starting with our article “What Is a Social Security Disability Hearing, and What Can I Expect When I Request a Disability Hearing?”

Social Security Appeals Council Reviews

If your claim is denied at the hearing, you can request an Appeals Council Review of the Administrative Law Judge’s decision. See our article “What Is a Social Security Appeals Council Review, and What Can I Do If the Appeals Council Denies My Claim?” for more information about Appeals Council Reviews.

Federal Law Suit

Finally, if the Appeals Council Review does not result in an approval, you have the right to file suit in Federal court.

This can all sound a bit discouraging, but keep in mind that a significant number of people who have been denied Social Security Disability are approved at one of the levels of appeal. So, if you believe you are disabled, it is worth your time and patience to appeal.

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124 Comments

  1. Latoya Pope says:

    Hello I’ve been denied my Social security Social security told me to go to my doctor for a statement or more stateing that I’m competent of handling my own money but they keep giving me the runaround I need help.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Latoya,

      Apologies for the late response. Our site has had a software problem that is now resolved.

      To help me respond to you, please clarify the following: Are you saying that you have been approved, but someone else is receiving your benefits for you? Did you get the letter from your doctor? Who is giving you the run around, the doctor or Social Security, and what do you mean by runaround?

      Best regards,

      Kay

  2. Amy says:

    Hello there,
    I had applied back 12/16/2011 so SSI/SSDI. Was denied 3 times. Had my hearing before a judge. Was approved with a partially favorable decision. That I would receive benefits for a 9/23/2011 to 1/31/2013. Going forward due to some improvement in psych. Although my health problems persist. Then I recieved my notice of award. It’s not partially favorable. I am getting monthly benefits plus Medicare coverage.
    Is this a mistake? It said that it goes through another review after the judge. Can it be changed?
    This is confusing.
    Thanks for your thoughts,
    Amy

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Amy,

      Apologies for the delayed response. Our website has had a software problem, which is now resolved.

      You are right to question the discrepancy! The second notification may indeed be in error. I recommend that you not spend any money received for months after January 2013 and not use the Medicare card until you can get clarification. I suggest visiting a local office with the judge’s letter because it truly sounds as if you were accidentally set up for ongoing payments when you were eligible only for a closed period of disability.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  3. Crystal T says:

    Hello my mom was denied the paper says “Not worked long enough under Social Security.”
    She worked in 1983-1989, 1996-7, 2004-7.
    We talked to a woman at the department she said that mom has to have worked 10 consecutive years to be eligible? Mom says there are reasons why she did not work consistently does her reasons mater or they only look at those who work consistently?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Crystal,

      Unfortunately, the reasons for not working do not matter. A certain amount of work credits are required to be insured for Social Security Disability (SSD). For a person over age thirty-one part of those work credits have to be in the ten years immediately before becoming disabled. Specifically, your mother has to have twenty credits in those ten years. This equates to working half the time in those ten years. If her income and assets are within the limits, she might qualify for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) disability,which does not require work credits for U.S. citizens. Social Security usually screens for the SSI program when a Social Security claim is filed. If your mother is unsure, contact Social Security to see if she has an SSI claim pending a medical decision.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  4. Rey says:

    I was denied ssdi because I was told I did not have enough credits, I have been in the military since 2000 when I turned 17 on my app I put my injury started in 2013. The VA has rated me at 100% permanent and total. I only know I was denied because I called the representative to ask and she informed me I hadn’t worked long enough, at that point she had me apply for sis and I was denied because I have too many assets. My plan is when I get out if the military and move to a different state I’m going to hire a lawyer and re-open my case. Know the I am finished and all of my injuries are worded much better in my va letter I hope that will help. What would I do if I’m denied again I can’t work so what do I do?

    • Rey says:

      Also I never recieved a letter for ssdi however I did recieve a denial letter for SSI.

      • Kay Derochie says:

        Dear Rey,

        Please see my response of a few minutes ago to your first message. If you did not receive a denial letter, then your appeal period should be sixty days from the date that you found out verbally that you did not have enough work credits. In your appeal, you would want to state that you did not get a denial letter and explain how you found out you were denied and on what date.

        Sincerely,

        Kay

        • Rey says:

          Kay,

          It turns out that the not enough credits for SSDI was an erroneous code and the SSA sent my info back to the DDS. Today I got a letter in the mail from the Disability Determination Services requesting me to sign medical disclosure forms which I already had turned into SSA. So I called the DDS and they told me don’t worry about sending the forms because they made a decision already today. I think this looks promising as if they were gonna deny me you would think they wanted all my medical records. What do you think?

          • Kay Derochie says:

            Dear Rey,

            There is no way of knowing whether the decision was an approval or a denial. If you are denied and disagree with the decision, be sure to appeal within sixty days of the date of the letter. It is usually best to have an attorney for the first appeal to hopefully avoid having to go to a second appeal and wait a long time for a hearing.You can obtain an excellent Social Security attorney by calling Disability Advisor at 1-888-393-1010. You do not have to pay any legal fees up front and you will pay attorney fees only if you are approved for benefits. Social Security law sets the amount your attorney can charge and the Social Security Administration pays the attorney directly from your retroactive award at the time they send your back pay to you. So, it’s all very easy and risk-free.

            Sincerely,

            Kay

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Rey,

      If you were receiving VA benefits, your SSI denial for excess income is probably correct.

      It sounds as if your Social Security (SSD) claim was not reviewed medically because it was determined you did not meet the non-medical requirements. I suggest that before your SSD appeals period is up that you make an appointment with the Social Security Administration and have them show you the working earnings record on which they were making the decision that you are not insured. Check their records agaisnt your own records (W-2 forms) and be sure that they counted all your earnings. Also ask them the last date you were insured (if at some point you were) and how many quarters they calculate you needed on the date you became disabled. If they did not count all your earnings and you are in the appeals period, you could go ahead and appeal now, submitting proof of the missing earnings.

      To be insured, you needed one quarter of coverage for every year beginning the year after you turned 21 though the year before you became disabled. Based on the information you provided, it appears you needed approximately 8 quarters of coverage to be fully insured and 4 or 5of those after you turned age 21. (Exact amounts depend on exact dates involved.) Up to four quarters canbe earned in one year. One quarter of coverage is equal to the following amounts.
      2001 830
      2002 870
      2003 890
      2004 900
      2005 920
      2006 970
      2007 1,000
      2008 $1,050
      2009 1,090
      2010 1,120
      2011 1,120
      2012 1,130
      2013 1,160

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  5. Kristina says:

    Hello. I’m 25 years old.

    I had to quit my job July of last year because it was steadily becoming too much for me. I applied for disability shortly after. I’ve been struggling with severe depression and anxiety for about 12 years, vocal dysphonia for 7, and benign positional vertigo for about 5. The dysphonia is made worse by stress, which seems like it’s everywhere with depression and anxiety. At work, because of the way my voice sounds, people refused to believe I wasn’t sick unless I divulged my personal medical condition to each stranger I interacted with each day. If I didn’t, people would do such things as refuse to touch things I had handled. My supervisor nervously spoke to me about complaints and questions being lodged about me, as though I was supposed to do something differently! I was having panic attacks while doing patrols at night.

    I’ve been trying to find work of some kind despite this, on and off again, because my husband and I simply cannot meet our financial obligations on a single income. While searching, I have had potential employers ask if I’m sick, if I’m crying, if I’m alright, been told I’m too quiet/unenthusiastic despite smiling/being agreeable until my face breaks, and even been hung up on by someone who refused to believe that I hadn’t just been woken by the phone at 3:30 in the afternoon – and thus was still groggy and unable to take her seriously.

    I’m unsure what to do about my disability claim. I believe my caseworker only heard half of what I said most of the time and just unconcernedly went with whatever she got. I was sent to a psychologist to be evaluated for my depression and for whatever reason, the positional vertigo (a purely physical issue) as well. The psychologist asked questions that completely failed to address how my depression affects my ability to function, gave me approximately 5 to 10 seconds to respond to her questions before she began speaking over the top of me – right around the time I began to touch upon HOW MY DEPRESSION ACTUALLY AFFECTS MY ABILITY TO FUNCTION, and when asking about the positional vertigo (again, WHAT is she to be assessing that?), made an extremely snide, unprofessional, out-of-line comment about how I “seem to have all of these conditions where a source can’t be found.” My original treatment provider for my psychiatric issues died in the middle of treatment, and my most recent failed to return Social Security’s calls. AT 3:30 PM on the 8th, I gave my caseworker the contact information for someone I saw between these two, and was told she would try getting in contact with him next – but my denial notice was typed up and sent out on the 9th. On top of all this, the notice states that I filed for disability because of depression and benign positional vertigo – despite the primary reason I filed the danged thing being my vocal problem. What the heck is this?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Kristina,

      You have multiple medical conditions, which makes your claim complex. When you appeal, I recommend that you write up a statement similar to your comment here, which goes into detail about the problems that your voice has posed on the job and in trying to get a job. Because of your mutliple conditions, I suggest that you get legal assistance with your claim. You can obtain an excellent Social Security attorney by calling Disability Advisor at 1-888-393-1010. You do not have to pay any legal fees up front and you will pay attorney fees only if you are approved for benefits. Social Security law sets the amount your attorney can charge and the Social Security Administration pays the attorney directly from your retroactive award at the time they send your back pay to you. So, it’s all very easy and risk-free.

      Because it is not certain that you will be approved (you must be disabled from all occupations), it might be wise to continue to look for work at the same time. Perhaps occupations that do not require much verbal communication, such as production work, would be a fit. You might also get in touch with agencies like Goodwill that help people with limitations find work. They will understand and may have some good suggestions and/or job leads.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

      • Kristina says:

        Kay -

        Thank you for your time and advice. Much appreciated.

      • tammy hogan says:

        Hi kay my name is Tammy Hogan and I get a social security income it is n8t enough to get by on and I hadn’t worked in the last 12 years sense I am not able to work I am 47 but I can’t work cause of health problems I am constantly going back and forth going to the doctors and nothing doesn’t help I can get my doctor to write a review of me if need be but I need help please

        • Kay Derochie says:

          Dear Tammy,

          I suggest that you talk with your local health and social services department to see if there are any benefits you qualify for that you are not receiving such as food stamps, energy assistance, or subsidized housing. Also, you might contact your phone company to see if they have a reduced cost program for disabled individuals.

          Sincerely,

          Kay

  6. Joseph says:

    I have a VERY SIGNIFICANT QUESTION:

    I haven’t worked for over 4 years and My parents have been fighting for me to receive my social security benefits since 1992 when i was just a kid. I was denied even tho there were progress reports, OFFICIAL PROGRESS REPORT that PROVED that i have poor speech development…poor communication skills and poor comprehension.

    I also had bronchial asthma which was also on the record.

    I no longer struggling with those conditions but is it’s still possible for me to receive my benefits FROM WHAT THE OWE ME SINCE MY PARENT HAVE APPLIED??

    I currently have skin condition but since I don’t have a job with benefits, not medical insurance I CAN’T PROVE THAT I HAVE ON RECORD SKIN CONDITIONS!

    Please respond…these are desperate times!!!

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Joseph,

      To be eligible for Social Security or SSI disability, you must be unable to work in any occupation. Having medical conditions or mental impairments does not necessarily result in approval for payment. If you believe that you are disabled and apply again and are approved, you benefit period will be based on your current application.

      As far as medical care goes, if you have no income, you might qualify for health care under the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) or other public insurance. If not, there may be a free or nearly-free clinic in your area where you could get treatment.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  7. Shannon says:

    Hello
    I have bin going to the doctor since i was 10.
    i am 19 now they have denied me twice.
    The letter they have sent me both times stated And i quote
    ” We are sorry to inform you but your claim for ssi has bin denied”
    Below this statment it goes not to fair in to detail other then “I am not disabled enough”
    Yet i have my doctors recorded’s about my disabiltys i also have read alot about ssi/ssd and they state. if your disabiltys stop you from doing everyday things such as Meals , Probity’s, and other daly things. i should be approved. With out going in to TO much detail.
    I have very bad social anxiety that has made me have panic attracks just knowing i have to bee around others. i also have VERY bad depretion i CANT NOT stress how bad it affects me. i have bin going to the adult school in my area yet still can NOT bring my self to go when i am need to. I know i could get the grades yet people seem to believe its just becuz im a younge adult im “streesing out” yet they do not understand it HAS got scientifically worse. but there is no cause for it to. yet the contiue to denie me. even though they have my doctors notes , my proscribtion list and my hospital visit’s…

    I have almost compleatly givein up i have No where to go i am also practicly homless i have signed up for medical and even then they have denided me

    PLEASE!!! if u can help me with some Idea on what i can do. Please dont wait i need the help. Thank you -Shannon

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Shannon,

      First you need to appeal requesting a hearing so that you do not miss out on your allowed appeals period. You much appeal within 60 days of the date of the last denial letter. This means the Social Security Administration (SSA) must receive your appeal within sixty-five days of the date on the letter. Next, you need legal assistance from an attorney who is well-versed in Social Security and Supplemental Security (SSI) income law. It is important to choose an attorney who emphasizes Social Security Disability in their practice. You can obtain an excellent Social Security attorney by calling Disability Advisor at 1-888-393-1010. You do not have to pay any legal fees up front and you will pay attorney fees only if you are approved for benefits. Social Security law sets the amount your attorney can charge and the Social Security Administration pays the attorney directly from your retroactive award at the time they send your back pay to you. So, it’s all very easy and risk-free.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  8. Sherry Walrath says:

    I don’t know what to do. I applied for SSDI and was denied because of have too few work credits in the last ten years. According to my statement my taxed SS earnings for the last 10 years was 34007.00. I received my denial letter two weeks ago. I am 55. I have had 5 back surgeries. Two of which were cervical fusions. I have asthma, degenerative spinal stenosis, depression and apnea. I also was denied SSI because my spouse has a good job. What do I do or am I one of the ones that is SOL no matter what.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Sherry,

      Disability law provides for benefits to replace some of the money a person was earning at the time of disability. For that reason, you have to have been working with some regularity in the ten years before becoming disabled. It does sound as if you are not eligible for any federal disability benefits. While your total earnings in the past ten years are potentially enough for you to be insured, apparently, they were not spread out over twenty calendar quarters (five years). You can only earn four quarters of coverage (work credits) a year; so unless your $34,007 earnings were spread over at least five year out of the last ten, you would not be insured. You may have sufficient earnings to be insured for retirement benefits at retirement age and/or you may be able to draw wife’s benefits on your husband’s record when he retires.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  9. carey says:

    No one will help i am homeless nowi was denied now i know some medical info i didnt know but have no way of getting med att at the age of 5 i had a srzsure which i think gave me sum brain or some kind of med problem what can i do

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Carey,

      Try calling 211, which is a help-line number in many areas, to get a list of services in your area. Check for homeless services to see if there are any that would connect you with help to appeal your denial, connect you with medical care, and perhaps find you some temporary housing.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  10. marie says:

    Hi I applied back n july 2013 ,n they sent me to their doctor n now a decision was made I called ssa n they told me that my case was under QA what does that means.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Marie,

      A medical decision has been made on your claim. Whether it was an approval or a denial, it was randomly chosen for a spot check (a quality review) to see that the decision was correct and correctly arrived at. Once the decision is finalized, you will receive notification of the decision.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  11. Debra Ceol says:

    Social Security Disability
    Location: Knoxville, TN, 37924
    Your Answers: Applicant’s Age (must be between 18 and 65): 53
    When did your condition first begin to affect you?: 1-3 years ago
    Has your condition caused you to stop working or substantially reduce your work hours?: Yes
    Have you applied for social security disability?: Yes, claim denied
    Are you currently being treated by a doctor?: Yes
    What is your relationship to the applicant?: Self
    Description: The Department Of Veterans Affairs found me 90% disabilities, at the time I was working for the U. S Postal Service and had been with the Postal Service since 2001 and the U. S Postal found me Disabilities to do my jobs at a Mail Handlers. My medical conditions is 1) Cervical Spine Degenerative disc disease. 2) Lumber spine degenerative disc degenerative disease. 3) left and right shoulder strain. 4) left and right wrist strain 5) left and right knee strain 6) Tinnitus 7) left and right foot strain. 8) Hypertension 9) hysterectomy and ovarian fibroid. 10) thyroid. 11) depression 12) Osteoarthritis in hands, knees, wrists, feet.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Debra,

      You do not pose any question for me to answer. You have provided a lot of information. If you are attempting to appeal the denial of your claim, I recommend that you contact your local Social Security office or call the call center (800) 772-1213 to request an appointment to appeal.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  12. susie brodie says:

    i was just denied disability because they stated that my condition was disabling on any date through 12/31/2013, i suffer from chronic bronchitis, which they say is copd, i failed a pulmonary function test, i have chronic ibs, repeated hernia surgeries, extensive scar adhesions in which now im going to see a specialist and may have to have surgery to remove scar tissue and was denied. i havent worked a full time job since 2011. i now dont work at all. im now on duoneb 4 times , i take medication for pain that make me drowsy and sleep. how is this not approved for disability. i do have a lawyer who is working on appeal

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Susie,

      Sometimes people are denied disability when they are disabled because their claim has not been clearly enough presented. Your attorney, who is helping you with the appeal, will work to present the medical information about your conditions as it relates to Social Security law.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  13. Debra Neal says:

    I was denied for social security and ssi

  14. ken says:

    I was denied and will file appeal, during this waiting is that retro pay?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Ken,

      If you are approved and are continuously disabled from the disability onset until payments begin, then retroactive pay will be paid for the months your appeal is pending, but not for the first five months of disability if your application is for Social Security Disability (SSD).

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  15. Rell Rell says:

    Ive been getting denied my social security disability since I was a kid… one of my legs are Longer than the other. I had surgery on my longest leg witch took out most of my knee bone and I had to learn how to walk again… its hard to work cause of limited mobility…. any info? Im know 28 ive been getting denied since 13

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Rell,

      You are probably being denied because there are occupations you could perform that do not require you to stand. If you are having trouble finding that type of work, I suggest that you contact the Department of Vocational Rehabilitation of your state and apply for rehabilitative services that include training or assistance with job placement.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  16. LINDA MALDONADO says:

    I WAS APPROVED FOR SS DISABILITY IN OCT 2013 AND NEVER HEARD FROM THE OFFICE AFTER THAT. WHEN I CALLED THEY SATED OH YOUR PAPERS ARE ON MY DESK AND IT LOOKS LIKE YOU WENT OVER THE SGA, WHICH I DISPUTED AND ASK HER HOW SHE CAME UP WITH HER CALCULATIONS, AT THAT POINT SHE STATED SHE WOULD SEND ME FACTS AND NEEDED MORE INFORMATION. SHE SAID WENT OVER FEW MONTHS IN 2012 AND ONCE IN 2013 AND NOTHING YET IN 2014. WHAT DOES THIS MEAN, WILL I GET MY SSD? I CALLED THEM AND LEFT A VERY NASTY MESSAGE ASKING THEM WHY THEY NEVER GOT BACK TO ME, NO RESPOND. SO, BEEN APPROVED IN OCT, NEVER HEARD FROM THEM TILL I CALLED, DISPUTED THE SGA, I’AM VERY CONFUSED, WILL I EVER GET ANYTHING? I WORK 40 HRS WEEK AND KEEP UNDER THE SGA AMOUNT. WHAT HAPPENS WHEN YOU GO OVER? DO I GIVE UP? I’M REALLY DISABLE BUT NEED TO BRING IN A SMALL INCOME TO SURVIVE. PLEASE HELP. THANK YOU

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Linda,

      Whether or not and how work above Substantial Gainful Activity (SGA) in 2012 and 2013 will affect your claim for Social Security Disability depends on when you became disabled. If you would like to give me the date that Social Security says is your disability began, I can comment further. (A tip: a nasty message is not going to get a quicker answer.)

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  17. Jennifer Buford says:

    Hello,

    I was denied disabilty, went to a lawyer and the lawyer told me that I did not have a case. She did not even look at my paperwork or my denial letter and told me that I can lift 10 pounds. So my appeal is late or non-existent. I am homeless and have just about had it. why so many hoops. My disability is not physical.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Jennifer,

      If you are not too late to file an appeal, do so. Then check with other attorneys and be forthright about your mental illness. If you cannot get an attorney, you can still appeal on your own. If you are outside your appeals period, you can file a new claim, claiming a disability date later than your last denial.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  18. Holly Walsh says:

    My review was just a little over a month ago and I received a letter saying I was good and my payments would resume as followed. A week later I look online on my SS account and I called and they said my benefits were stopped because a piece of information they had asked for had not been sent in. They were indeed sent in a couple of weeks ago they told me because they already stopped my benefits I cannot appeal this decision because they already sent me two notices in the mail. I never recieved anything in the mail about my benefits being stopped. I feel I have a right to appeal, am I correct?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Holly,

      If you are within sixty-five days of the date that they say your claim closure letter was sent, you have the right to appeal the closure because you are in the appeals period. If more than sixty days have passed, you can still appeal and attach a statement that you did not get the closure letter and learned of the closure by looking online and calling on the date you called and a copy of the letter that said benefits would continue. Social Security does not have to accept a late appeal but may do so because you did not get notice of closure.

      Whether or not you are within the appeals period, resubmit whatever items they said they did not receive. Also request a copy of the closure letter so that you can address all the reasons for the closure. Lastly, be sure Social Security has your correct current address.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  19. Daniel JoDon says:

    I have severe rheumatoid arthritis, severe social anxiety and clinical depression. I have been denied twice now for disability. Now I have to wait over a year for the hearing process. Since my 3rd appeal I have been diagnosed with stage 3 severe COPD, will new medical conditions speed up the having to wait over a year for a hearing and or decision? I am un able to perform past job duties, uneducated and in my 40′s now.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Daniel,

      A new additional diagnosis will not speed up the hearing date, but you should let the hearing office know of the diagnosis and you should provide contact information for the medical provider who diagnosed and is treating you for the COPD. You mention being uneducated; if you do not have the skills usually attained by completing the grade level you completed, be sure the judge knows this.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  20. Kris says:

    Hi. I have several medical conditions, the most serious being Multiple Sclerosis. I also have permanent vision loss in my left eye (cannot see at all with it) as well as some loss in my right eye. I recently filed for ssdi and just received the “you have not worked long enough” denial. I am 32, and worked 7 out of the 10 past years with enough made to have over 20 credits spread out (4 a year) over those years. The person I spoke to at disability said I haven’t worked enough the past 2 years??? I’m confused!!! Please help!

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Kris,

      It sounds as if you should be both fully and currently insured for Social Security Disability benefits. You should appeal within the sixty-day appeals period. Be careful not to miss the deadline.

      To prepare for your appeal, I suggest that you request an earnings statement. You can do this online at http://www.ssa.gov or by calling 1-800-772-1213. (Be careful to request an earnings statement, not a benefit statement.) The earnings statement will show all your earnings reported to Social Security. If any earnings are missing, you can do the following to support your appeal and prove the missing earnings:

      1. Submit W-2s for the years that are wrong. (Note that 2013 and possibly 2012 earnings will not be posted on the statement).
      2. Submit pay stubs for any work in 2014.
      3. If you do not have W-2s for the missing years and they are within the last three years, you can ask Social Security will investigate to see whether the employer failed to pay the taxes, whether your earnings were reported on an incorrect social security number, or some other problem prevented correct posting.
      (To get earnings posted for more than three years ago, you have to have some proof of the work.)

      You will get a quicker correct result if you can provide the documentation. Because you have some eyesight deficits, perhaps a relative or friend could help you sort through past tax documents to find the W-2s.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  21. Aaron says:

    Hi, I have applied for social security benefits on 1/17/2014. My conditions are major depression, panic disorder, anxiety disorder, asthma and postural tachycardia syndrome. I also have recently had to get a cardiac monitor in my chest for a year or more. I also have not worked since 2010. Upon the completion of my application i have been sent a denial letter. In the letter it reads “a careful review of your medical records shows that your ability to function has been affected by your conditions, but then it went on to say that i do not have sufficient vocational evidence in file and can adjust to other work. I am conflicted by the two sentences. My questions are what do they mean by the two sentences and upon appeal will i have a better chance of approval? What type of additional information about my conditions would they need to help prove my case?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Aaron,

      First, many people work with medical conditions that limit their ability to function, so the two sentences your reference are not inconsistent with each other. The wording of your denial letter indicates that you are under age fifty. For individuals under age fifty to be eligible for Social Security or SSI disability benefits, they must be unable to perform any occupation that they could otherwise perform based on their education, training, and work experience. To have a successful appeal, you would need to establish that all your conditions combined result in there being no occupations you can perform. It might be helpful to talk with a Social Security attorney or the Department of Vocational Rehabilitation in your state to see whether or not they can identify occupations you can perform.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  22. Anon says:

    Ive been diagnosed with Bipolar, Psychosis, Depression, and Social anxiety. Social anxiety is the worst, it keeps me from going places and it causes extreme panic attacks. I worked for a month(from home) but had to quit because of panic attacks. Also, i had to switch to cyber school because of the Social anxiety when i was in middle school. I have medical records for 6 years(being hospitalized, psychiatrist). I’m 18 now. I’m trying a bunch of different meds currently but none ever even helps me.

    I applied for SSI and a month later i got a denial letter saying my conditions are severe, but not severe enough (what?).

    So i’m appealing. I got a lawyer easily.
    But I have to wait over a year for my court date.
    I’m up all night dreading having to be in front of a judge.

    What do i do if the judge denies me? Do i have to start the process all over and wait another year? Would any lawyer take my case then?

    Do you think i have a fair chance at getting SSI?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Anon,

      It is good that you got a lawyer to present your case, which should give you a better chance. If you are denied at a hearing, you can appeal to the Appeals Council or start over. Your attorney would be able to advise you which would be your better option.

      My following comment may sound a little facetious, but I am serious. I suggest that you forget about the hearing and postpone being anxious until you have a hearing date. My reasoning is that what you fear definitely will not happen until after you get the hearing date, which will come only a few weeks before the actual hearing. In the meantime, you are in no danger of having to go before the judge.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  23. Andrew R says:

    I was deemed disabled from 2009-2010 i relocated my family to a warmer climate to ease some of the nerve pain in my back. I’ve tried working the last 3 years and just recently my back went completely out on me again. If it’s deemed that another surgery “may” help can the SSA deny my second claim if i don’t went to be continuously be put under the knife? Also since i had to file a new applicant will they take into account my prior claim seeing as how my diagnosis never changed? Any insight would be appreciated thank you?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Andrew,

      Your current application will be based on your most recent cease work date, not your prior application, Given that you were required to file a new application, it appears that you exhausted your extended period of disability on your prior claim. Under a new application, you will have a five-month unpaid waiting period before benefits begin to accrue. Social Security law does not require you to get any particular type of treatment for your medical conditions, so you would not be required to have surgery as a condition of approval.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  24. Cigano says:

    Dear Kay, I applied back in 2011 for my mental health issues such as: PTSD, BI-Polar, MMD and IMP.. Was denied the 1st time and at reconsideration.. Never follow through for a hearing.. I retained a disability lawyer in 2013, she sent ss a letter asking them to consider opening my case because of lack or no medical records provided but she never got a response.. So, I filed a new claim on oct 2013 was again denied and denied in feb2014 for reconsideration.. So, my lawyer requested a hearing immediately after my second denial and I have a hearing schedule for 7/1/14.. I’m currently in treatment at the VA hospital for my mental Heath issues and I will be discharged on 6/18/14 12 days before my hearing.. I’m going in front of Judge John D. Thompson Jr. The worse judge in all of Florida and the entire country.. He has the stats to back it up.. I’m concerned that he will deny my claim outright just because he’s a bonifide asshole.. So, here are my questions?? Can I request a new judge by delaying my hearing or some other possibilities.. And IF by chance I do get approved will they go all the way back when I stated my disability began in 9/2009?? Oh by the way I have type 2 diabetes and hypertension.
    Thanks

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Cigano,

      You will not be successful in getting your claim assigned to a different judge. If you are denied, you can file a request for an Appeals Council review. If you are approved, your payment will probably be based only on your 2013 application. It is rare that a judge will reopen an earlier claim decision.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  25. Belinda says:

    My son is 24 and we just recently filed for SSI for him. I wanted to also apply for Disabled adult child benefit (SSDI) because I became permanently physically disabled (ALJ Determination in 2000. My son was diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder Type 1 in 2002 at age 12 (only one month after his 16 yr old sister had to be hospitalised and diagnosed with Bipolar 2.) The people at SSA said He could only file for SSI because he has no income, never held a job ( and he will almost certainly always live with me.0

    He was treated by a Team of Psychiatrists at a childrens hospital outpatient psychiatric department every month until 2011 (age 21) when he aged out of Medicaid. In that time he received a comorbid diagnosis of Panic Attack Disorder, Severe separation Anxiety Disorder. took 2 and a half years to try and get him back in a public school with 504 accomodations. That didn’t work (decompensating and Debilitating Panic, too many people and stress) His last grade completed was 8th with ALL F’s except in his special ed class.

    Was on a Med Cocktail that changed reguarly based on monthly labs. Early 2011 the childrens hosp team advised that after review of his records they believed they might have to add Asbergers to diagnosis.They could no longer treat him becauseof age and loss of Medicaid but wrote 8 months of scripts for the only FREE pharmacy around.

    DDS sent him for a Mental Status Assement and made a denial determination that says the psycholigical evidence shows your symptoms are severe but we have determined your condition is not severe enough to keep you from working. We considered medical and other info (education, age, training, work experience ) and determined he can understand and remember simple work instructions in a non public environment without social demands.

    The only Medical they had (and attempted to get) was thir own status assment. The school is still looking for the records.Yes it is in Reconsideration but no lawyer will touch it.

    What kind of job is “simple work instructions in non public environment without social demands”. And I thought there was a sequential basis for determining disability, and isn’t that last part #5?.

    They also said “we checked to see if you qualify for any other Social Security and you do not. (Is that a denial determination too?)

    Hope You Can Answer
    Thanks

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Belinda,

      I recommend that you appeal the denial both explicitly for SSI and Social Security. (Yes, he was denied all kinds of Social Security without taking a formal claim). State that you are appeaing the the SSI denial and also the disabled adult child claim for him on your record (provide your social security number). State that you asked to file a the disabled adult child claim and were refused. You will have a long time (likely a year) before a hearing date is assigned to get a copy of the denied claim file to review and address the reasoning, a copy of all his medical records back to age twelve or earlier and all his school records. It will also give you time to try to find an attorney who is interested in representing him. Even it you do not, you can present the case yourself with evidence that you gather. Be sure to keep one copy of everything you submit for the appeal so you have it to refer to when you prepare for the hearing and also to be sure it is all considered.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  26. Trisha says:

    Hello, I applied for social security in May 2011. I have Narcolepsy however that isn’t consider a disability under SS. So after being denied twice on my own I decided to try and get a lawyers help. I tried getting a lawyer in the beginning but couldn’t get anyone to take the case. By the time I found a lawyer to take my case I had already filed the appeal. So I went for a judge hearing with my lawyer and was still denied. Lawyer decided after the denial came he didn’t want to stay my lawyer. So I went ahead on my own and filed an appeal on judge decision. New evidence of came in after I had done filed an appeal from judge decision. I have Major Depressive affective disorder, recurrent episode, moderate. Sleep disturbance, unspecified. Now I sent all thus new evidence to the social security administration and said it be uploaded to my file. However I read that the appeal counsel doesn’t look at new evidence. So my question is do I need to try and find a lawyer to take my case or just keep waiting on appeal counsel to make a decision. I sent the appeal in October and still haven’t heard anything. This new information can make big difference I think in outcome of decision. I’m just worried that if appeal counsel don’t look at new information they might deny mean once again.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Trisha,

      Some types of information can be submitted to the Appeals Council for your appeal. You do need legal advice on whether what you submitted falls into that class and, if so, whether you presented it correctly or whether additional communication is needed with the Appeals Council to state why it should be considered (referencing governing Social Security regulations). If you are denied by the Appeals Council and you were applying for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and/or were still insured for Social Security when the judge denied you, you can file a new claim and submit the new information then…but that has to wait till you get an Appeals Council decision.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  27. holly says:

    Hi I’m Holly I’m gonna be 20 in October
    I have severe asthma it preventsme from working
    anything can set my asthma off.
    Just cleaning the house I haveto sit down every 15 minutes
    To take a treatment and calm myself down.
    Its sad that I’m so young and can’t really do anything cause of my asthma

    When I was in 5. Grade my nurse refused to give me my medication and
    I ended up having a seizure and stoped breathing was put in a coma for a
    week. The doctors had to give me Propofol the doctors aid I had a 5% chance
    Of surviving. And that if I did I would live a hard life not being able to breath
    I have no other choice but to apply for disability.. do you think I would be eligible

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Holly,

      It is possible that you might be eligible. The best way to find out is to apply.

      Best regards,

      Kay

  28. lynn says:

    Dear kay, my child has hemiplegic cerebral palsy , i applied. For ssi since i miss work alot do to my childs many doctors appt. I was working 32 hrs a week when i sumitted the ssi claim i received a letter stating my child is deemed disable but he does not qualify do to my income, butbut since my submisdion in jan 2014 , my employer has cut down my hours to 15-22 hrs a week . I visited social.security.office and presented my current income stubs , how long for me to get a response i just resubmitted new income june 2014, any suggestions, i cant make it if i comtinue to wrk like this but need extra days to assit my child, thank you

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Lynn,

      How long it will take to receive payment for your son depends on whether you had to file a new application because of the length of time your son was financially ineligible. A new application can take two to five months. If you were told a new medical decision is not needed, then payment should start within a couple weeks. If you haven’t received payment within a month, do follow up.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  29. Michael Dorworth says:

    SSD HEARING RESULTS!
    I had a SSD hearing on May 7th 2014, in my eyes and my lawyers eyes it went very well.. The VE agreed there was no work I could do, either past work or line work or heavy or light work, he greed there was absolutely NO work I could do with my disabilities.. Hell even the hearing judge “off record after the hearing” asked if I needed help getting to my car because even though she was in Peoria she knew the building and she knew it was a long walk.. BUT, I was still denied, my lawyer said he could not believe I was denied, but he was NOT going to help me with my appeal process.. So here I sit, no Lawyer and 60 days to appeal and I have no clue what to do!! I have a friend that works at SSD locally and he looked at my papers and said the reason I was denied “probably” was because of the amount of backpay that would have been awarded to me, how much I dont know but they said it was all the way back to 06.. Personally I don’t care about backpay I really don’t even care about front pay I just want a medical card so I can go to the doctor and get help!! But you know how lawyers operate, rightfully so, they have to get as much as they can, its their job and how they get paid… So no blame there… Does anyone have any sugestions?? I suppose it would help if I put what my disabilities were… I have a grade 1 and grade 2 disc degenerative disease.. I have spinal stenosis, spondylolisthesis, osteochondritis in both knees and right shoulder and Im sure you could imagine the depression… I told my attorney at the prehearing appointment we had at his office that I feared if I did not get disability I would probably go home shut my garage door start my car and go to sleep. That wasnt a joke and it wasnt an attempt to look crazy.. I am 41yo and the majority of the issues I have are juvenile so that shows how long I have been dealing with the pain, Im am tired of living with this pain, yes I know getting SSD wont stop the pain but getting a medical card or medicaid so I can get a doctors help just may.. Before I had gotten the attorney that I had another attorney told me I was worth more dead than alive when it came to my wife and kids, so be it I guess, is what I told my lawyer.. I never said any of this at my disability hearing.. I was not seeking sympathy from anybody!!! Im not some crazy person that has a death wish, im just tired of the day in and day out pain..

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Michael,

      Theoretically your choices are to file for an Appeals Council review or file a new application, claiming the day after the hearing decision as your disability date. I say theoretically because if you last worked in 2006, you are no longer insured for Social Security Disability (SSDI) benefits. You could file a Supplemental Security Income (SSI) application if your income and assets are within the SSI limits.

      If you want to pursue the Social Security claim your only option is to request an Appeals Council review. I recommend that you talk with another attorney who specializes in SSDI claims for advice on the statement you should make when requesting the review. Just a note: if you appeal and the Council remands the claim to the judge for a second hearing, insist on a face-to-face hearing. (You do not have to accept a video hearing.)

      Sincerely,

      Kay

      • Michael Dorworth says:

        Thank you Mrs. Kay for your insight.. Honestly Im tired of it all, im tired of the disappointment in our SS system for which I paid into since my first job at 15yo, Im tired of the overwhelming feeling of being a burden to my wife and kids physically and financially and most of all Im tired of the ongoing pain.. Getting SSD wont help any of the above anyway.. Again, Thank You for your time..

  30. ashley nickell says:

    My mother has several medical conditions that keep her from working or even able to walk a block. she uses a cane and is constantly in pain. she is about to be evicted from her home because the housing program she was on was only two years. she has no income whatsoever. come july I dont know where she will go or what will happen to her or her things. why has she numerously been denied. I know she has a case. her condition is getting worse and worse because she has to live such as getting groceries done by bus because she has no vehicle.she doesnt even a phone. she uses a neighbors when she can. her medical condions are fibromyalgia, spinal stenosis, scoliosis and back, leg, hip, shoulder and knee pain.she has high blood pressure and cholesterol and is overweight. our city health dept for some reason for the first time will not give her a doctors note even though it has been done in the past. so with no doctors note she is expected to get 10 job applications a week..on foot by bus..she has no computer access so this would have to be done at the library. you can only be on the computer at the library 3 sessipns a day which are an hour long each. it hurts her to sit or stand for long periods of time so this too is very difficult but she needs her medicines or like she has been told in the past by doctors “without her medications she is a good candidate for a stroke.” so then she will be in a nursing home. its just ridiculous. there are drug dealers that are approved for disabilty. why is it that my mother who lives every day in pain denied every single time? she cant even wash her hair or clothes regularly because she has no money to buy the toiletries that a woman needs to take care of herself. we do what we can to help her like take her to the grocery store and give her a little amount of money here and there but that is never really enough to do much at all because we have our own mess of issues that is another story.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Ashley,

      If your mother has exhausted all her appeals, she should file a new claim for Supplemental Security Income (SSI). Perhaps her condition has worsened since her last denial and she will be approved. In the meantime, perhaps you can contact all the public and private social services agencies to see if there are any housing or cash assistance options open for her.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  31. Donna says:

    Hello!
    Hopefully you can answer my one question. In May 2014, I filed an appeal to the denial letter. Im not sure what comes next?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Donna,

      You are now waiting to have your appeal reviewed and to receive a decision. You should consider getting an attorney to represent you and present your case in the new appeal so that you do not risk another denial and the need to appeal again. You can obtain an excellent Social Security attorney by calling Disability Advisor at 1-888-393-1010. You do not have to pay any legal fees up front and you will pay attorney fees only if you are approved for benefits. Social Security law sets the amount your attorney can charge and the Social Security Administration pays the attorney directly from your retroactive award at the time they send your back pay to you. So, it’s all very easy and risk-free.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  32. Cigano says:

    Hello Kay.. I’m going in front of alj john d. Thompson jr. I hear he’s the worse judge in fl and the 2nd worse judge in the entire us. I have three doctors who says I cannot work because of manic bi-polar, ptsd, dissociative disorder and mdd.. If he denies me cause he is an *%^^%% can I sue him in court??

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Cigano,

      I am not a legal expert, but I do not believe you can sue a judge because he renders a unfavorable decision

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  33. Diana says:

    Dear Kay,

    I recently applied for SSDI and SSI because I have schizophrenia which I was diagnosed with before reaching my age of 22. I turn 23 this summer, but I just recently applied for disability benefits and was denied upon the basis that I do not have enough work credits (6 required). I know there is an appeals process, and that I can hire an attorney. But is there any general information as to what I can base my appeal on in opposition to this contradiction? Thanks for your help.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Diana,

      If you agree with the information in the earnings record that Social Security has for you, there is no point in appealing. If, however, you have W-2, pay stubs, or other records that show more earnings than are in Social Security’s records, it would be appropriate to appeal. You can call 1-800-772-1213 and request a copy of your earnings record. If you applied for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) disability also, a decision on the SSI claim may still be in process.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  34. Sandy Wilder says:

    Dear Kay,
    I filed ssdi and the other, sorry im very confused. I definitely have enough credits for one but cant get approved for either? I have PTSD, anxiety disorder, rotator cuff surgery that has permanently disabled my dominant arm 45 percent, and depression. Now I don’t have “record’s” except the hospital I went to when I had my anxiety attacks and the psychologist they sent me to that said I was suffering from PTSD, depression and anxiety. However I have numerous doctor records about my arm not and never will heal. They keep denying me and an attorney told me not enough record. I am just about to my witts end. i have tried to seek help for mental but everyone is full. Idk what to do.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Sandy,

      You do not say whether you still have an appeal pending. If you are waiting for a hearing, get on a waiting list so that you can get under care for your psychiatric condition and follow any suggestions your attorney offers.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  35. Angie M says:

    Hello: I applied for social security disability in September 2013. I went to the doctors appointments they required in November 2013 and January 2014. They said it could take up to 9 months for a determination so in June 2014, I called June 16 to check on the status of my claim and they told me that it was denied back in January2014. The problem is I never received a notice of determination and my 60 days for filing a reconsideration was over in March. What can I do?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Angie,

      You need to go to your local Social Security office immediately and tell them that you just found out verbally on June 16 that your claim was denied in January and that you did not receive a notice. If you have not moved or moved and notified Social Security of your new address, your sixty-day appeals period should begin June 16, 2014. If they say you can’t appeal or that you can appeal or will be denied for late appeal, you need to get an attorney right away. If you can file an appeal, it still would be a good idea to get an attorney to help you.You can obtain an excellent Social Security attorney by calling Disability Advisor at 1-888-393-1010. You do not have to pay any legal fees up front and you will pay attorney fees only if you are approved for benefits. Social Security law sets the amount your attorney can charge and the Social Security Administration pays the attorney directly from your retroactive award at the time they send your back pay to you. So, it’s all very easy and risk-free.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  36. Jessica Wagner says:

    Ok I have triplets that were born way to early they were receiving ssi and they had to go for reviews of their cases and got denied. They go to speech physical occupational therapy weekly. They go to the pulmonary clinic. they all have cerebral palsy and go to the CP clinic. want this just started to walk but have to hold her head to the side just to ballance. then one of the girls stands but can’t walk the other one can’t stand the pressure on her legs. they are going on two and a half. The denial letter states they have significant medical needs but don’t qualify under their rules. then on top of that they all are still underweight. Howis it they been ddenied.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Jessica,

      I suggest that you request a copy of their claim files from Social Security, so you can see what evidence is in the files and the rationale behind the decisions. That way you can be specific regarding why you disagree and gather any missing information to present. If you appeal within ten days of the denial, you can request continuation of benefits while the appeal is pending.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  37. cigano says:

    Hello Kay. I’ve taken a phyc test two weeks ago and the diagnosis from the test results and clinical interview is; that I’ve been diagnosed with c-ptsd, major depressive disorder recurrent and borderline personality disorder with paranoia. I’ve also have a copy of the phcy report that goes into the details of my diagnosis, that I gave to my ssdi attorney. I’ve have statements from family and people that know me who state that I have a lot of anger, irritability, isolation, trust issues, etc….I’ve also given my SDDI attorney four restraining orders, that I have against me from my neighbors, long story..I’ve hospitalize about 20 times since 2008 for panic, that I had a heart cath just to prove to myself that there was anything wrong with my heart. I’ve been Baker Acted 5x as recent at August 2013. I need to know from you or ask you, what are my chances of winning my case? I have an SDDI hearing in July, but I’m going in front of the worst Judge in FL and nation. I don’t want to be stuck in endless appeals if he denies me. If he does deny me what can I do to expedite the process? They’ve already expedited my hearing due to several suicide attempts. Do you think I should request and OTR hearing? Please help me, so I can have an idea of what to do. Thank you.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Cigano,

      Follow your attorney’s advice about requesting a decision on the record. Some claims lend themselves to that and some don’t. It sounds as if you have quite a lot of documentation of your mental health problems and how they affect your functioning. That should help your claim. If you are denied at the hearing, you can request an expedited Appeals Council review.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  38. Ivan says:

    I’ve been under disability since 2003. After my inititial diagnostic and five vistited to the mental hospital. My condition bipolar disorder.

    I start my treatment with my medications therapies,etc

    2007 – Still in treatment I drop again with my condition out of control. Eight mental institutions in seven years.

    2009 I continued with my treatment and start trying to work under ticket at work program.

    2009-2012 I failed twice keeping a job…two different jobs same area..education.

    2012-Present. Just one opportunity to work. The company failed me for be a slow learner. I did a grievance with EEOC because I understand was a very weak decision. No consequences.

    Right now im under depression and without interest to still trying to find a job.

    Social security did medical review and denied my bennefits and now I’m in reconsideration process. Without my bennefits and medical treatment I will be in the mental hospital again when I will not able to received my medical attention. Plus I’m going to be in a shelter without any resourses to keep my health in good shape and in the worst scenario of my life. Right now I’m start thinking very negative and I don’t like it. Any suggest about what I can do…any help ?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Ivan,

      Get a copy of your claim file so that you know exactly why your benefits were terminated. If you disagree with the reasons, address your arguments to those reasons. It could also be helpful to get legal assistance with the appeal.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  39. Christy Spencer says:

    My sister has both severe mental and physical problems. Mentally, she suffers from bipolar disorder and ptsd. Physically, she suffers from back problems and diabetes. However, she has been denied disability benefits when she should have received them. Why are there so many people in this country who have never worked a day in their life getting a free ride while people like her who “”want” to work but “can’t” are being denied?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Christy,

      If your sister has not exhausted her appeal rights, she should appeal her denial. If she is really disabled, she may not be presenting her case well and may need knowledgeable legal representation. You can obtain an excellent Social Security attorney by calling Disability Advisor at 1-888-393-1010. You do not have to pay any legal fees up front and you will pay attorney fees only if you are approved for benefits. Social Security law sets the amount your attorney can charge and the Social Security Administration pays the attorney directly from your retroactive award at the time they send your back pay to you. So, it’s all very easy and risk-free.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  40. Melissa says:

    I applied for SSI benefits for my son in June of 2008. He has severe Bipolar NOS with psychosis. He has a history of hospitalizations and has been in Psychiatric Medical Institute for Children twice (9 months each time). It is now 6 years later and we are still appealing. Our latest lawsuit against the social security administration resulted in reversing the last ALJ’s decision. We now have another hearing set up in Sept. I do not understand why we have to start over with another hearing when the judges decision was reversed. Why is this process taking so long? All the decisions from Social Security state that he is not severe enough. He is 14 now and getting worse as he goes through puberty. What can we expect at this next hearing?
    With hope,
    Melissa

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Melissa,

      The appeal system is set up so that a judge’s decision is vacated, not overturned. The judge is charged with investigating or considering issues that the Appeals Council determined were not sufficiently addressed. If you do not have an attorney, it would be a good idea to consult with one who is very familiar with Social Security appeals to give you an idea of how the second hearing will differ from the first and how much additional information you can submit.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  41. Lilly says:

    I have received ssdi since 2011 and just last month had to go for a follow up medical through ssdi but an independent dr I believe. I just received the notice that I am no longer disabled as of 7/10 and will stop getting benefits. Here’s the thing I receive it from a skin condition but the dr never looked at my skin condition!? It is a condition that does not go away and has actually gotten worse. Going to Ss office tomorrow to file appeal. So frustrated and scared. How can they judge without looking? What do I need to do now? I saw you said to ask for the claim file anything else? Can I request their des report?

    • Lilly says:

      Their dr’s report I meant.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Lilly,

      The consulting doctor’s report should be in the claim file. When you appeal, state that the doctor you were sent to did not examine your skin and be sure to submit a current report from a dermatologist that documents the problem and the limitations it causes. It could be a good idea to retain an attorney to assist you.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  42. dawn says:

    hello there- i have an 8 year old daughter who was diagnosed with asthma when she was only 2 months old. a side effect from the rsv virus she contracted at the day care. it has been managable up until the last few months. she has had several attacks and receiving treatments on a daily basis. although, i have the family medical leave act in place at my employer iam not getting paid for the time i am losing. so therefore, its getting difficult to pay for medicine for her and maintain the household bills. do you think she could qualify for some assitance due to her illness?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Dawn,

      To help you decide whether to file an application for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) disability benefits for your child, I suggest that you talk with your child’s doctor and also with her teacher to see whether she is functioning okay in school despite her illness or is having significant problems. You might also read the article about disability for children under the SSI tab on the http://www.disabilityadvisor.com website. If you are not sure whether she would qualify, you can always file the application to have the issue evaluated. SSI also has family income and asset limits which are discussed in the same series of articles.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  43. Fay says:

    I have been denied for SSD-I have coronary artery disease, diabetes type 2, high blood pressure and thyroid-Hasamoto’s. I have 60 days to appeal. Should I seek a lawyer to help me appeal this? I worked in Customer Service-last job for 15 yrs and they say I could do this job. I had angina every day at work/anxiety-miserable with severe fatigue also. The angina has lessened since I retired early-at 63. SS told me I could still apply for disability so I did.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Fay,

      If you believe you cannot do sedentary work as you have done in the past, then I recommend that you appeal with the assistance of an attorney. You can obtain an excellent Social Security attorney by calling Disability Advisor at 1-888-393-1010. You do not have to pay any legal fees up front and you will pay attorney fees only if you are approved for benefits. Social Security law sets the amount your attorney can charge and the Social Security Administration pays the attorney directly from your retroactive award at the time they send your back pay to you. So, it’s all very easy and risk-free.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  44. Heather K says:

    I am in a situation where my hearing date is about a month away, and my attorney dropped my case because of the judge. I have called several attorneys in my area, and it’s clear that no one is going to help me at this time because the judge is so awful. The current approval rate at SSDI hearings in town is something like 15%, because of the current roster of judges. Because of that, about 60% of applicants are currently going into their hearings without representation, because attorneys will not take their cases (can’t get paid if you can’t win no matter what you do). So, I know I will be denied with this judge, and there is no hope for successful appeal because a remand to this judge would be useless.

    It seems my best option is to withdraw my appeal and file a new claim. I have 3 questions about this:

    1) If I file a new application, does the first application figure into the case at all, or is it completely out of the record?

    2) The end of my SSDI insured period already passed this summer, about a month ago. The original date of disability onset was of course long before that. If I file a new application, can I still use the original date of onset, or am I just too late to file?

    3) If I can still file with the earlier date of onset, will any evidence obtained after the end-date of my insurance period be considered?

    Thank you

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Heather.

      I suggest that before you withdraw your claim that you try one more place to get representation. Complete the Request for Disability Evaluation that is offered on this website. The form to request the evaluation is on every page of the site. When you complete the form, you will be contacted by an attorney’s office to discuss your case. If they take your case, as you know, you do not have to pay any legal fees up front and you will pay attorney fees only if you are approved for benefits. Social Security law sets the amount your attorney can charge and the Social Security Administration pays the attorney directly from your retroactive award at the time they send your back pay to you. So, it’s all very easy and risk-free.

      If you do not succeed in getting representation and decide to withdraw your request for a hearing to file a new claim, you must claim a disability date after the date of the reconsideration denial letter. You must submit everything for your claim again. Your prior claim file will not be accessed. Evidence of disability that came into existence after you are no longer insured would be considered only to the extent that in some way it supported you were disabled before you were no longer insured.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

      • Heather K says:

        Thank you for the information. That leads to another question:

        If I filed a new claim, would I be eligible for benefits only for the time between the reconsideration denial and the end of my insured period? Or if it is found that I have not improved, would the benefits continue after the insured period, as they do when you are approved before your insured period runs out?

        Thanks,

        Heather

        • Kay Derochie says:

          Dear Heather,

          If you were approved on a new claim and you claimed the day after the reconsideration denial as your disability date, your SSDI would begin in the sixth full calendar month after the date you claimed and would continue as long as you continued to be disabled.

          Sincerely,

          Kay

  45. Lorraine riggs says:

    I have a question, my daughter was approved of ssi disability in surance in December 2013, she was sceduled for a reveiw. In a year., after her 18th birthday , in a bout a mouth afterwards I get a nother letter stateing she was up for reveiw, I went in, they sent her to there doctors ,thsn she was denied a gain, my daughter has a serious heart condition, in May we both went to apeal the decision, and adked for a contiued payments until trial day, but after aouth has passed, gound out she was still terminated, I called ssi they said the paper work was lost, and that if I had proff I came in to bring proof , well I brought the proof, I was than told they was going to fix the problem by a supervisor, and that my psperwork will ne sent to correct ssi building, well I called a gain, the office to were my paper work wss faxed too, said they didnt put in computer you was in for the reason to continue benefits, and we just got paper work 2- days a go, she said I would have to wait 30 days so they csn upgrade sysyem, my daughter rely on medication for survival, I called several more times, they wont return my calls….what should I do?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Lorraine,

      I suggest that you both go to the office again and ask to see the manager of the office. Take the proof of requesting continuation of benefits, say what has happened and your daughter’s need for medication, and ask if there is any way to shorten the time frame. Also, contact your daughter’s doctor to see if he or she has any samples of the medication your daughter uses. Also contact the pharmacy to find out which pharmaceutical company makes her medication. Then contact the company. Some of the companies have programs that provide free essential medications for a limited period of time.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  46. lorraine says:

    Another question if you had went to social security building, to apply gor a continuation of disability insurance payments until trial day. Amouth passed and thry said the paper work was lost, I return with proof I csme in, a supetvisor said she was going to fix the problem this was in may, in june I returned to fill out the paper work a gain, they gave me credit for the time I showed up, thought it would be put in computer I came in for a continuation of benenfits, but july came in I called the office, they said it was Sent to the office I was suppose to go to, when I called office, they said they just got paperwork, and it will take 30 days to ne put in computer it is now july, my daughter rely on medication yo keep her alive, with out payments I can buy medication she needs,( note) each time I call, its nevet put in computer I was even there. , when I got receipts that I was there….anf each time I call ,they never return my call, what should I do?

  47. Jeanne says:

    Kay,

    I was just denied SSDI. Reason stated was my condition not expected to remain severe enough for 12 months in a row to keep me from working based on medical evidence & my statements on how condition affected ability to work.

    What I found puzzling was:

    1. They did not address my main disability, OCD. They only mentioned the anxiety & depression.

    2. A statement that read as follows: “Since you were treated, your condition has improved.” How did they arrive at that decision?

    Have a feeling that my Dr. & therapist didn’t provide enough/adequate records of my condition which is getting worse. I will be filing for a reconsideration. Will submitting more current & detailed documentation of my ongoing treatment improve my chances of getting approved? I’ll be be 60 yrs old in September.

    Thanks in advance for your response.

    Jeanne

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Jeanne,

      By all means submit more documentation if you have it. Appealing without providing any new information is likely to result in another denial. Be sure to make a specific statement regarding why they are wrong including why the OCD is disabling now when it is a life long condition and why your improvement is not enough to work. If you are denied again after you submit more medical information from your therapist, I suggest getting an attorney.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  48. April says:

    My son is 7 years old he was born with leg length discrepancy I applied for disability twice for him and he was denied both times I applied again a year ago he was denied again I appealed it now I got an attorney on board and I’m thinking he will definitely be approved this time if he is does he get back pay from this time applying or the very first time I applied considering he has been disabled since birth?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear April,

      If your son is approved, benefits will be based on the date of his initial application.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  49. Jillianne says:

    hey I have a question I appealed my disability because they denied me the first time but I have epilepsy and I want to work part time. If I start working will that deny my appeal for benefits?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Jillianne,

      Generally, work earnings of less than $1,070 gross wages per month will not keep you from being approved if you are not capable of working and earning more.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  50. jackie Murphy says:

    I was denied SSD benefits because I did not have enough work credits in the last 10 years – eventhou I had worked for 22 years prior to that time. if I am reading the qualifying criteria correctly I have to have a certain number of credits in the last ten years – I am 54 years old. My question is can I use my husbands work credits to qualify?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Jackie,

      No, you cannot use your husband’s Social Security work credits to qualify for Social Security Disability benefits. If your husband becomes eligible for Social Security and at that time you either have a child of his under age sixteen in your care or your are age sixty-two or over, you can apply for wife’s benefits. If your husband’s income is not too high, you may have a disability claim for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) disability benefits still pending a medical decision.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  51. debbie says:

    Hi I have been diagnosed with osteoporosis and osteoarthritis and have had shoulder surgery on my shoulder to remove bone spurs .I have back problems having to stand on my feet for several hours at work .I only work part time .I am a 50 year old female and have only a 6th grade education should I apply for disabilty .I am having alot of problems and trying to me keep working with the pain .doctors just keep telling me to exercise it is difficult because of the pain and if I’m not careful I throw out my back.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Debbie,

      If you are earning under $1,070 gross per month and are working to your maximum physical capacity, you might be disabled according to Social Security even though you are still working. If your earnings are $1,070 or more, to be eligible you either have to reduce your work hours or stop working.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  52. stacey nelson says:

    Dear Kay first let me just say thank you for all you do ..I’m 39 have bipolar PTSD sever depression personality disorder an add I have seen the same counsler for 24 years who fully supports me going on disability I take a med cocktail that do little to control my disability I am under the care of a psychiatrist as well and take meds regularly an religiously knowing no treatment tis not an option …the meds have tremendous side effect ts that are debilitating as well…I applied for ssdi in June 2014 the dds told me they made a descion on Aug 5 but it was pulled for a quality review …I was told unnoficially by SSA that I was approved for benefits following the review an they make the same determination …my question as Iv been under an extreme amount of stress over all this which isn’t helping is what is the likelihood the will overturn the dds descion? Also its been under qr for three weeks an I was told it should only take about two …should I be getting nervous that they disagreed with the M.E. descion…again thanks for all you do an no I did not obtain an attorney…did I make a mistake?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Stacey,

      The quality review could result in upholding the approval or reversing it to a denial or a request for the Disability Determination Services to investigate further. The length of time in review is not an indicator of outcome. I suggest checking with DDS once a week to see if your claim is out of review. If the approval is upheld, you might not get notification right away.

      You did not necessarily make a mistake by filing your claim on your own; but if you are denied, I recommend hiring an attorney. You can obtain an excellent Social Security attorney by calling Disability Advisor at 1-888-393-1010. You do not have to pay any legal fees up front and you will pay attorney fees only if you are approved for benefits. Social Security law sets the amount your attorney can charge and the Social Security Administration pays the attorney directly from your retroactive award at the time they send your back pay to you. So, it’s all very easy and risk-free.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  53. Mr. Thompson jr. says:

    My ssdi claim was expedited because my claim was classified as suicidal. If I lose my ssdi hearing and appeal my claim to the appeals council, would they expedite my claim appeal in the same way? In others words, does the SSA still consider my claim as dire because of my suicidal ideation, although, I’m appealing my claim to the appeals council? Or do I have to wait 18 to 24 months for the appeal council to consider my claim?

    Thank you, Kay….

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Mr. Thompson,

      The Appeals Council does have an expedited process for some cases. When you appeal, indicate that your claim and hearing were expedited and why and request that the Appeals Council also be expedited.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  54. stacey nelson says:

    Dear Kay just to update I was approved ! An dealing with the local office now :)

  55. Phil says:

    I am applying for my son. He has Autism, adhd,bi-polar but they told me they cant legally say it cause of his age, he has explosive disor der . I filed back in April of 2014. I went a week and a half ago to the speech doctor they wanted me to bring him too. Now they are asking me to bring him to another doctor for a child psyc evaluation. Ive sent them all his medical records, all his IEP’s from school, 2 evaulations ive had done already with diagnoise on them. When and why is itvtaking so long for an approval?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Phil,

      Whether or not it seems necessary, be sure to take your son to all the appointments that have been scheduled. I would, however, call the examiner with a list of everything you think has been submitted and ask the examiner to verify it is in file.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  56. Phil says:

    Ok thank you

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