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Is there a Social Security Disability list of impairments, that is, a list of illnesses and injuries, that Social Security considers disabling?

By   /  March 3, 2016  /  123 Comments

Learn about the Social Security Disability List of Impairments that lists illnesses, symptoms and signs that Social Security considers disabling.

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Watch the Video: "Is there a Social Security Disability list of impairments, that is, a list of illnesses and injuries, that Social Security considers disabling?"

The Social Security Disability List
of Impairments

Social Security has a list of illnesses and injuries that are considered disabling but only if they are accompanied by certain symptoms, clinical findings, or test results. Having a certain diagnosis is not enough for your claim to be automatically approved; but if you have one of the conditions in the Social Security List of Impairments and you also have the symptoms and signs that are listed, then your condition will be considered disabling, without further investigation. Similarly, if your diagnosis is not listed, but you have a condition with symptoms and findings comparable to one of the listed conditions, your claim will be approved.

An Example of an Illness in the Listings

For rheumatoid arthritis to meet the listings and be automatically considered disabling, it must be accompanied by positive ANA test results and either degeneration of a weight-bearing joint that necessitates the use of a cane or loss of the ability to perform fine manual manipulation.

Qualifying for Disability When Your Illness is Not on the List

If the condition for which you are claiming disability is not one of those in the listings or is not accompanied by the required signs or test results, you could still qualify for benefits. If you do not meet the Listing, your claim will be evaluated to determine whether you can do occupations you have done in the past and, if you are under age fifty, whether you can perform a new occupation. For more information about how the Social Security Disability List of Impairments fits into the disability evaluation as a whole, please see our article “How Does the Social Security Administration Apply Social Security Disability Laws to Determine If I Am Disabled?”

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123 Comments

  1. Frank Yarum says:

    I have been in front of an ALJ twice now, both times I was given an unfavorable decision. I had legal representation since I filid for benefits in 2010. I just received the new Appeals Board decision. It is now being sent back to the ALJ (but since this is now the second time the AB sent it back, it goes to a different ALJ). I am a disabled veteran with a 100% service connected disability rating from the Veterans Administration. My list of service connected disabilities include, severe migraines, limited motion of neck, lumbar strain (The VA lumps most back issues into this one category, my actual condition is DJD, 2 bulging discs and 1 herniated disc), obstructive sleep apnea, hiatal hernia, acid refluxed desease, bursitis r/shoulder, carpal tunnel in both wrists and hands, limited motion of hips, djd of the right knee, limited motion of both ankles, planters fasciitis, and more. I also have more medical conditions not rated by the VA yet including PTSD, moderate recurrent major depressive disorder, chronic pain disorder, IBS with diarrhea and constipation, colonic polyps, hyperlipidemia, chronic cervicogenic headaches, type 2 diabetes, sciatica, fibromyalgia, osteoarthritis, paranasal sinus disease, pinched nerve in cervical spine at C6/C6, restless leg syndrome, doichoectasia of the left vertebral artery, childhood trauma PTSD, peripheral neuropathy. All of these conditions are well documented by many VA Doctors and tests. X-rays, CTs, MRIs, surgerys in my VA medical record, (which is about 12 inches thick of computer printed medical files). I really wish I could fire my representation and get someone new cause in both times we appeared for a hearing, she showed up just 5 minutes before the hearing and then did not only not subpoena the SSA Dr., but didn’t challenge any of the medical conclusions he made in his reports (witch many of were either straight false or derogatory because he left information out that did not support his conclusions). I should also point out that the VA Dr’s do not fill out SSA paperwork for us nor can they be subpoenaed to testify. I did go get an FCE from a clinic that specialized in physical limitations and rehab. (Said I was sedentary light). My previous job was as a Branch Manager for a world wide security organization. Job duties require up to 8 hours per day of standing, sitting or standing, deliveries of company material to client sites and to employees etc.etc.etc. Oh yeah, lets not forget that in the 6 and 1/2 years since I filed, I have never (not even once) have I been seen by the Social Security Dr. who makes comments in his reports like, I see no reason for him to be in as much pain as he claims, I see no reason for him to use a can, etc. etc.
    I guess my questions are; how can I find out info on SSA Dr. ie. Medical specialty, when last practiced, stuff like that? I stopped working do to disabilities getting worse to a point where I could no longer function in a working environment, but my illnesses and most of my disabilities had happened years earlier, and just continued to get worse over time. I was told by my advocate that only my medical records from the day I stopped working forward could be used as evidence. Is this true? How do I submit over 1000 pages of medical records to the court?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Frank,

      I am not advising you to change attorneys, but unless there is something in your representation agreement that prohibits it, you can probably change if you want to.

      Sometimes showing medical history before the actual cease work date is helpful because it shows the duration and progression of the condition(s). Ordinarily, if you want to submit records, you can just send copies to the hearing office; however, you may be barred from doing that now because you are in the stage that what is in question is whether the judge made the correct decision based on the documentation he or she had at the time. So, before sending in new evidence, I suggest that you get legal advice on whether that is allowed at this point.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  2. Corine Smith says:

    Hi Kay, I applied for SSDI online late June. I went into SSDI office to drop off some paperwork that my doctor had completed for Sedwick and Broadspire. I also included the lab work and limitations I have due to Primary Sjogrens, Fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue, chronic pancreatitis, chronic urticaria, malasie, pain, sicca, and joint swelling/pain….plus more symptoms. I had my interview that day as well. I received ADL forms for me and my husband to coplete . I wanted to know since my disease(s) are in the blue book and I meet criteria and gave the support documents, how are my chances for getting approved?

    • Corine Smith says:

      Hi Kay, I forgot to mention I’ve been out on disability a year and 8 months.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Corine,

      Each of the medical conditions in the Blue Book list of conditions that are considered disabling without an analysis of the claimant’s work background and each condition has a list of findings that have to accompany the diagnosis. Stated another way, a person could have a diagnosis in the Blue Book but not meet the listings because tests and clinical findings do not demonstrate the severe symptoms and findings shown in the Blue Book. In short, you may meet the listings or not. If you don’t, you may still be approved based on other criteria. You can get more information about the process in the article “How Does the Social Security Administration Apply Social Security Disability Laws to Determine If I Am Disabled?” under the “Claim Process” tab at the top of this webpage.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  3. Lora Miller says:

    Hi Kay! I have not applied for disability before but feel I may need to. I am 52 and in the last 3 years have had several medical problems that are causing many problems. I have been diagnosed with Hypothyroid, diabetes, and Lichen Planus. I also have many problems not.actually diagnosed because I really can’t afford the.test or because no specialists will see me because I have no insurance. I am taking medication for anxiety, joint pain,and brain fog also. My Dr is also pretty sure I have IBS,restless leg syndrome and possibly MS. I am experiencing so many symptoms it’s hard to keep track. I have balance problems and pretty bad knee pain. I am in a bad position because I need treatment for these problems and the Drs won’t see me because of the lack of insurance but if I could get an actual diagnosis of these problems I could possibly get disability and in turn insurance for treatment. Do you think I have a chance of being approved if I apply?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Lora,

      The only way to find out whether you are disabled under Social Security law and enough medical information to prove it is to file an application. As far as medical insurance goes, check with your state or county social services to see if you qualify for Medicaid. If you do not, during the next open enrollment in December, I suggest that you investigate health insurance under the Affordable Care Act. If your income is limited, you might qualify for a government subsidy to pay for premiums. More information is available at http://www.healthcare.gov.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  4. Tami says:

    Hi Kay,
    I have multiple health issues that I have been dealing with for years. MRI showsNerve root compression in lower lumbar L4 – L5 area, deal with sciatica in right hip down leg to heel, hip pain, MRI shows congenital narrowing in neck with nerve root compression along with flattening on spinal cord. Have been told surgery is an option. My left arm feels weaker due to the neck issues and possible previous tia in 2009. I deal with severe migraines that are debilitating for days. I also have IC of bladder that is also debilitating. I recently had chronic cholecystitis of gallbladder. When one or all of these are going on at same time it is beyond my control to function normally. I have seen numerous dr’s, neurologist, neurosurgeons, PT , chiro, massage therapy, pain meds, epidural injections, tens unit, heat, ice, etc . I have not worked since 2010. Applied for SSDI, been denied twice, have a lawyer and now waiting on a hearing date to be set. What are the chances for approval at my hearing?

    Thanks,
    Tami

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Tami,

      I’d say you have a reasonable chance for approval, but there is no way to know for sure until you’ve had the hearing and a decision is rendered

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  5. Tamika says:

    I have ptsd bipolar depression anxiety fibromyalgia angorphobia seizures and the other kind. Where they just come but no change in ekg I for for the name and I have a chiari malformation and I get really bad to the point have to go to hospital migraines do you think I would get aooroved

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Tamika,

      I can’t say for sure, but it is possible that you could meet the medical requirements for eligibility. The only way to know for sure is to file a claim.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  6. arlen owen says:

    i will b 61 yrs old in july 2016 i just applied for ssdi i tried to apply before that was 8 yrs ago i was denieid I havent worked in 8 yrs since 2007 the va has said that i am unable to work because of mental issues, hearing issues i get pension from the va for that reason i am rated at 50% compensation service connected. the va says that my mental issue are not service cionnected so thats why i cant get a higher rating. i have a GED never went any further in school all my life i worked on my feet cooking factory work thats about it.presently I have a broken ankle since feb 2016 it is not healing correctly and they may have to try to surgerly repair it. The dds is processing my claim i wasnt required to see another doctor or nothing my medical records have already been reviewed what do you think my chances are and tks in advance arlen

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Arlen,

      It may be difficult to be approved for Social Security Disability (SSDI) because you have to prove that you became disabled while you were still insured for Social Security, which was probably last in 2012. If your income and assets are within the Supplemental Security Income (SSI) limits, then you only have to be disabled now and expected to be disabled for twelve months. Therefore, you may have a better chance for SSI.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • arlen owen says:

        i dont understand i have more than enough work credits prior to my illness i was working for ford moter making 75k a year why not disability

        • arlen owen says:

          the veterns admin said i was disabield 8 yrs ago thats why i havent worked cant work

          • Kay Derochie says:

            Dear Arlen,

            You can submit your VA medical records; however, VA and Social Security laws are different so being disabled for VA benefits does not necessarily mean you are disabled under Social Security law.

            Sincerely,
            Kay

        • Kay Derochie says:

          Dear Arlen,

          To be insured for Social Security Disability (SSDI), twenty of your quarters of coverage (work credits) have to be in the last ten years before disability began. Based on last working in 2007, that would be some time in 2012. Sometimes it is hard to get older records. If you can get your records from 2012 and earlier and they clearly document your diagnoses and that your limitation and restrictions at that time were severe enough to keep you from working, then you could be approved for SSDI.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  7. Suzanne says:

    I am 56 with osteoarthritis in one ankle. I broke it years ago and it has alot of screws in place. it hardly bends right and gets all swollen if I am on it. It has gotten super bad over the past dozen years or so. I have several xrays that show that there is no cartlage and the space is narrow. They said it is end stage arthritis. I have worked in retail my whole life. I just can’t do it no more. So I applied for disability back in February. I have a cane that really helps but i have carple tunnel so using it makes my hand go numb. Anyway, last Friday 5/13 the online status says “a decision has been made and you will be notified by mail.” A friend told me that if it’s a denial Iwould probably have gotten the letter already since it doesn’t get sent to social security,so they can decide how much benefits I would get.He said that the longer I don’t hear anything the better it is. Is that true? Don’t want him giving me false hope. Its hard getting by. I might have to rent aroom in my house to make payments. Would that be income? Seems like you give lots of good advise for people. That’s real nice. Thanks a million.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Suzanne,

      There is nothing about the online information or the timing of it to indicate whether you are approved or denied. If you do not have a decision letter by May 23, I suggest that you follow up with your local office for information about the decision.

      Rental income does not affect Social Security Disability benefits and does not have to be reported. If you were also approved for Supplemental Security Income (SSI), the rental income could count in determining payment amount, but the amount counted should be your profit after expenses such as extra utilities and a portion of your rent or mortgage. A tax accountant or the IRS can provide information about allowable expenses for room rentals.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Suzanne says:

        Well Miss Kay you was so right to tell me to call Social Security when I didn’t get a letter again today. I was on hold for ev er. But the lady I talked to was real nice and when I told her why I was calling she told me I was approved and how much I was going to get and when I’d get it and said Ishould get a award letter sometime this week. Why I damn near fell of my chair, no kidding. So I can breathe a big fat sigh of relief. Thanks for your help Miss Kay you are great.

  8. john says:

    hello, my disability is from a train accident i had when i was nine… i lost two toes and the whole bottom of my left foot… my right leg was amputated with a short stump below knee… (which i have several revisions because of scar tissue breaks down…) but i have always worked, until 2001, i was a passenger in car accident and got banged up… started on short term disability till it ran out… and applied for disability and was approved within a couple of months… i went to voc- rehab. went thought test etc. and they helped me to persue building a poultry farm on land i owned… things went well for about 5 years, then during a bad snow storm,i twisted my right leg … my stump swelled up and caused me unable to get my leg on, my nephew helped me out then, and since then, i’m unable to perform my duties that are needed on a poultry farm… because of all the walking and working off 6′ and 10′ ladders… i had to get help… i provided a place to live and pay him 150.00 a week. and have been operating this way since 2012… last week i had a review and submitted the information pack… and now they have suspented my benefits because i’m making to much… i was under the impression that if i had encurred expenses to perform my duties, that it would be taken into account in keeping me eligible for benefits… i have a note on the chicken houses, and live on farm … if i lose my benefits … i’ll lose my farm, because of my disability …

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear John,

      Assuming that you receive Social Security Disability (SSDI) and not Supplemental Security Income (SSI), the issue here is whether you are performing Substantial Gainful Activity (SGA) and if so in what months. (See the chart below for amounts of income since 2012 that are used as a guideline for SGA.)

      Determining performance of SGA in self-employment is more complex than when work is as an employee. The review considers your net profit, the number of hours you work in the business, and the duties you perform. You do not say what kind of tax forms you use to report your farm income, but your expenses to run the business including the wage you pay your nephew would be one type of business expense to reduce your profit. Disability-related expenses that are necessary for you to work can also be used to reduce earnings levels. These would not be normal business expenses. If your duties are essential to the business and you are profiting at the SGA level, you are probably performing SGA. If you think that you are not, you can appeal and explain why your work is not SGA.

      Benefits are suspended when SGA is performed about a nine-month Trial Work Period (TWP). After the thirty-six-month Extended Period of Eligibility, which follows the TWP, your claim will be closed if you perform SGA in any month. these and other work incentives can be reviewed in the Red Book, which is available online at http://www.ssa.gov and from local offices.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  9. Andre petry says:

    Hi I was diagnosed with gout back in 2000.it has only gotten worse over the years.I went from one gout attack are two a year.To now I’m getting anywhere from 5 to 6 attacks a year.I’m only able to walk with a cane are sometimes I have to use a wheelchair.my knees and ankles always hurting.I can’t put any weight on my ankle at all.I also have pain in my heels of my feet my shin.it’s a burning painful situation.I’m almost always in bed because I can’t put anyway on my ankles.but I only have Emergency room visits I have plenty of those over the years.because I don’t have insurance to see a primary doctor.can I be approved for sad benefits.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Andre,

      You might meet the medical requirements for disability benefits. I suggest that you file a claim. At the same, you might check with your county social services office to find out whether there are any free or low-cost clinics near you and/or whether you qualify for Medicaid.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  10. Rudy rubio says:

    Hello please help i was in a car accident in 2002 i ended up going to icu and having surjury I had to get 2 plates and 8 pins on my right side of my hip i had to litterly learn how ro walk again since my accident ive tryed to work several places and i always end up having to quit because my hip will always start hurting and then i wouldnt be able to walk or work so i finelly gave up since my accident the only medical records i ave are from the accident and from one job because i do not have much money or insurance so i have delt with the pain since then i have been in minor pain and since the last 3 years it has got worser two years ago my spouse noticed me having problems and pains with all her concern and her having to care for me SHe told me about ssi So I decided to apply because i need to provide for my family and i see no matter how much i try to work i always end up hurting my self more in tge long run .. well now its has been two years since i applyed and last week i got a call from ssi the man asked about my claim said he was doing my paper work and getting my medical release forms and sending it the right place so i can get a appt to see a physican im 3 months away from turning 30 and im wondering will i be able to get approved i feel so anxious becuase i have pushed my self so hard to try to work and provide for my family and i always end up quiting because of the pain it has become a problem for me as a man so much that im bipolor and depressed because i can not provide for my kids and spouse and im so scared to get denied with what i have told u amso u think i will get aproved ?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Rudy,

      Be sure to attend the examination that has been scheduled. Also, you need to make a statement for your claim about your “bipolar and depression,” so that your mental health limitations can also be considered.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

    • Sue says:

      I have my first disability case at federal status reapplied now I am waiting for answer on my second case it’s been 3 weeks since I had a mental exam called dds today she said it is with internal doctors and it should not be much longer do you think this a good or bad thing?

      • Kay Derochie says:

        Dear Sue,

        It is good that the review of your claim is progressing. I can’t predict whether or not you will be approved.

        Sincerely,
        Kay

  11. beth says:

    I applied for ssi in March of 2013 been denied twice waiting on the judges answer I went in front of him Dec 2015 hr sent me to another ssi doctor. .. I’ve been diagnosed with bipolar 2 and anxiety disorder… also had a learning disabilities growing up.. literally made around $20000 my whole like and I’m in my early 30s… the ssi doctor kept saying in his report “due to my intellectual limitations and depressive symptoms I would have diminished tolerance for frustration and coping skills which would impact my ability to respond to typical pressures of a work situation” my question is do you think I’m going to get approved finally?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Beth,

      Based on the report of the doctor, I’d say that it is possible that your claim could be approved.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  12. Chary says:

    I have been off work since January 11,2014 due to health reasons, I have lupus. I opted for the earling retirement package. I have not gotten back to work since my pains from the osteoarthritis
    A have been constantly occurring
    I applied for Ssdi February 4 2016, I got a letter from the disability office on 2/19 for questions and I have 10 days since the letter was written dated which
    Was 2/15. i called them on the 22nd but I haven’t not heard from them what does this mean ? Is this a denial since they have not gotten bc to mr yet? Appreciate it

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Chary,

      Not hearing anything is not an indication of denial. A disability application typically takes two to five months. Their asking for additional information may have been just one of the initial steps in the review.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  13. Jan Wilton says:

    I am 56 years old. I’ve worked in retail both homegoods and a bakery for the past 15 years. I have developed arthritis in my left ankle which was broken and had surgery in 1995. I have walked with a limp for many years and it has gradually worsened and gotten especially bad over the past several years. I went from working 40 hours per week 5 years ago, to 30 hours and finally to 20. On February 6, 2016 I stopped working.

    The pain had become so intense and my limp so bad that I began walking with a cane to help. I could not use it in my bakery position, which required me to be using both hands, walking, standing and climbing ladders. My pain would be so bad by the end of my shift, walking to my car would bring tears to my eyes. My days off were spent keeping off my leg to get ready for my next work day.

    For many of my working years I did not have health insurance, so there is not a strong medical history other than a current xray and another from 2007 showing “excessive degenerative joint disease”. I have my current physician’s physical evaluation. He also believes I have arthritis in my knees and my left hip because of my awkward gait when walking.

    I have applied for SSD. Do you think I will be approved?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Jan,

      There is a possibility, given your age and work history, that you could be approved. If you are denied, I suggest appealing if you have to walk with a cane. If you appeal, I suggest hiring an experience Social Security attorney. When you hire a Social Security attorney, 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 before they send your back pay to you.

      Just a note, during the last quarter of this year, you might investigate health insurance with possible government subsidy for the premiums through the Affordable Care Act. You can learn more at http://www.healthcare.gov.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Jan Wilton says:

        Dear Kay,

        I appreciate your reply and certainly hope that I am approved and will not need to appeal.

        Since I am no longer employed, I am able to get Medicaid. Now, I can see my physician any time I need to.

        Thanks again and God bless!

      • Jan Wilton says:

        Hello Again Kay,

        Looking for a bit of honest reassurance here. I just received a letter that has me scheduled for a physical exam with a physician that does assessments for them.

        Should I be worried this is just a formality before a denial? My nerves are shot as my husband and I slowly sink financially.

        Thank you for your time.

        • Kay Derochie says:

          Dear Jan,

          The examination is to gather more information about your health to add to the information in file. Your claim could be approved or denied.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  14. Ashley says:

    I was diagnosed with fibrous dysplasia when I was 17. I had two surgeries within a year. The second one resulted in the surgeon removing part of my skull. I have titanium mesh and a titanium plate in my head. This has caused my head to become deformed. I am now 32. I am having sharp pains in the area of the titanium plate. I am taking OTC medicine for it, but it doesn’t seem to help. I feel so ugly due to the scar and deformity. I have pushed through the pain, but lately it seem to be getting worse. I read that fibrous dysplasia is a chronic illness and a rare disorder. I am currently working part time, but the pain is unbearable at times. I have worked in the past, but the pain would get so bad, that I would have to quit. I wonder what my chances would be, if I were to apply for ssi or ssdi?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Ashley,

      I am not certain whether you qualify for benefits. If you are earning less than $1,130 gross per month or have to stop or drop below those earnings due to your health, you can apply for benefits. Whether or not you apply, I suggest that you discuss your pain symptoms with your doctor to see if the doctor can offer a prescription medication that would help with the pain.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  15. Robin says:

    I am 55 years old and I have Waldenstrom Macroglobulinemia a non curable cancer. I was diagnosed in june of 2015. I stopped working in Jan 2016. I suffer from extreme fatigue, nueropathy in my feet and legs, arms and hands, I have a hard time staying focused and paying attention. My legs and feet ache after sitting for any length of time. My arms and hands also ache when I use them. I get tired easily when walking. IF i stand my feet are in terrible pain. I have difficulty following instructions. I dont sleep well with the nueropathy and I get drenching night sweats that keep me up at night. I will be having cancer treatment for the next 2 years. I was on Chemotherapy but had to be taken off as it was damaging my heart. I also have anxiety. I have filed for ss disability. I have to go for an evaluation for my anxiety. I have done office work my whole life. My education is through high school with no diploma. What do you think my chances are for approval.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Robin,

      I would think that you would be approved based on the physical condition that you describe. The consultative examination about anxiety may be to determine whether you are capable of managing benefits if paid. If you are denied, I recommend requesting a copy of your claim file so you can see the exact reason for the denial and appealing with the assistance of an experienced Social Security attorney. When you hire a Social Security attorney, 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 before they send your back pay to you.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  16. Sean A Camp says:

    Hello, I am 45 yo and have a plate and screws in my left femur and knee, from a head on collision many years ago. Also, I have arthritis in my L3 & L4. I’ve the years I’ve sucked it up, but it’s came to the point to where I’m unable to do the jobs I’ve previously done. Standing, sitting our walking for long periods, end the day with pain, swelling and if pushed too hard, bed rest for a couple days. I have applied for ssi/ssdi and they are sending me to one of their drs this week. I’ve read that the condition of my leg itself is a definite for mgr to receive benefits. Could you shed any light on this for me, please.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Sean,

      I do not have enough information to determine whether your condition meets the Social Security listings based on diagosis and findings. If it does not, your claim will be evaluated to determine whether you can work in any occupations, especially in ones that alternate mostly sitting with occasional standing and walking.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  17. David says:

    I am 56 years old, I have severe spinal stenosis and two ruptured disc and a previous fusion with plate in my cervical spine causing my dominate to have parcel paralysis. My lumbar spine has moderate spinal stenosis a ruptured disc that has shifted 10.1 millimeters causing paralysis in legs mostly on the right sideand also has a previous fusion. Even if I have both surgeries I have been told this will happen again due to degenerative spine disease. They are sending me to a SsI Doctor. I have an attorney. What do you think my chances are of getting approved?

    • David says:

      I forgot to add that even after multiple surgeries I will be left with five fusions and another plate. And again the degenerative disc disease has accelerated and this will keep happening.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear David,

      I think you have a reasonable chance for approval unless you have worked in the past in a sedentary occupation.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  18. Joseph Rodgers says:

    PLEASE MRS. KAY…
    I fell 35 ft. From a cliff on may 25 2014. I shattered both my heal bones and broke a good size section of my L3 vertebrae off. I was Careflighted to the nearest sufficient hospital for the injury and put there for 6 days, then they said I was at observation stage and insurance would not cover so they put me in my moms SUV ( unstabilized with a large piece of my L3 vertebrate floating in my back and both hills still shattered (11+ pieces each) with nothing done but having ace bandages wrapped around them and given pain medicine and told me to drive to Dallas Texas from Fayetteville Arkansas, 10 hour drive. Once I got to Dallas they admitted me for 5 more days. They removed the bandages and actually placed some kind of stabilizing devices on my feet. The first surgeon told me to wait 6 months for the surgery and when that time came around my insurance had changed and he did not accept that one I was told to seek another orthopedic surgeon. When I found another surgeon that would see me a month later he said first thing “why was the surgery not done within the first two weeks of the accident this is the worst I have ever seen”. He then started working on a process to get me into surgery for reconstruction of my left heel. I have been on severe narcotic medications at very high doses and anxiety medications since the accident and am still taking them currently (90 mg. Morphine , 50 milligrams of hydrocodone , 4 milligrams xanax , 900 milligrams neurontin , 1800 milligrams ibuprofen , and 600 milligrams of Wellbutrin) that’s what I’m currently taking per day now to control the anxiety and pain I was taking higher doses . my left foot has never healed properly after the surgery where he placed a steel rod through my heel into my ankle immobilizing it. Both heels are still malformed and have bone spurs on the bottom of my heel bones. My right foot has healed to the point where it does not constantly hurt when I am in a resting position but if I try to get up and walk very much it begins to hurt again as well, my left foot however has never stopped hurting even at rest on the pain medications I am still on at least a level 3 on a 1 to 10 pain scale without medication it is 7-8 deep throbbing with shooting pains up my left leg. The only time my left foot hurts less than a 3 or equal to a 3 on the pain scale of 1 to 10 is if I am laying down with it elevated even sitting still causes it to hurt with my foot being elevated. I cannot leave it just down on the floor or the pain gets worse the longer it is there even on medication. Numb to the touch from the heel forward but if you apply any pressure it sends a pain so drastic I have to yank my leg away (reflex) this also is what is affecting me walking, I do not walk I kind of slowly hobble along and can not do that for more than 10 minutes without it causing me to have to sit down and elevate my feet for the next 2 hours to get the pain to go away even with medication to the point I can bear it when trying to walk not only do I have that I have loss of balance very easily because of the loss of mobility in my ankle and the whole front left of my foot being numb to the point I can’t feel anything until I do accidentally try to place any pressure on my left foot. It causes me to pull my leg up (thus most likely I fall) so its like a false security, when it touches something it hurts too bad to leave it there. Yes of course from natural human response you pull away from extreme pain well now I’m on one leg that the other heel still hurts on itself,and I fall. My doctor told me it would take 2 years minimum for my foot to heal where it felt somewhat normal but would still have no mobility (but the pain might never go away or feeling come back to my foot or the nerve damage may never heal) it has only been one year since the surgery because the first doctor waited so long and the time it took to find another specialist get an appointment see him get results from the xrays and scans read the other medical reports schedule surgery and then perform it. Now I cannot walk without losing my balance and even when trying to walk I can only go 10 minutes at most and I’m in pain the entire time I’m doing that trying to keep my balance as I move slowly. I have tried not taking the pain medication and the pain gets so bad I cannot handle it at all. So most of what I do is lay in bed and try to sleep and I can’t because of the pain, or I take all my medications to bring the pain down to manageable but then I’m on so much medication I can’t think straight either. I am having to send in all medical records and reports for the past two years along with my next doctor’s visit report that I go to on February 2nd and fax them all the information on the same day. Do you have any idea of what I’m possibly looking at as far as being approved or denied and why. I will say all my past work history includes nothing but construction work I was a waiter at one point. All physically demanding stand up all day long jobs. And all I ever was was a laborer besides at the prison where my main job was to count inmates and walk close to 20 miles a day escorting inmates back and forth, up and down four flights of stairs and walking up to no less than a quarter mile every 30 minutes then writing the times that I performed one of the escorts or handling of an inmate and the time the inmate returned to his cell. So as you can see all my past work has been physical labor with long days of standing on or using my feet as a hammer on a shovel. I can no longer do that obviously even trying to walk across an uneven surface is nearly impossible for me, flat surfaces are hard enough as it is. I am only 40 years old and not sure what to do. Any advise is welcome. Thank you for your time.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Joseph,

      It would be helpful to your claim to have your doctors confirm your sitting limitations with your legs in normal sitting position and also to confirm your pain levels are credible and confirm any side effects you have the medications you take. It seems clear that you cannot work on your feet, but you will also have to prove that you can’t work seated.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  19. Kamara M. says:

    Hi. I applied for SSD back in July. And finally today 1-13-16 I spoke with a representative and she told me a decision was made a few days ago. And that it had to go to federal “something” (I can’t quite remember) to make sure the right decision has been made. I have been diagnosed with Severe Aplastic Anemia and I am 36 days into my recovery from a Bone Marrow Transplant. My disease is on the CAL so shouldn’t I be approved for at least a year? And since a decision has been made, how long should it be before I know what that decision is?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Kamara,

      It appears that your claim was randomly chosen for a quality assurance review to see that the decision arrived at by the Disability Determination Services was correctly arrived at. It can take a month or more for that review to be completed. You will not be told the decision until it has been finalized.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  20. LaLa says:

    I applied for disability. I have multiple issues…. CML (Leukemia), degenerative arthritis in both knees and severely in my hip which causes me alot of stiffness and pain even while sitting. I will need hip replacement eventually but have to wait to get cleared because of the CML. I also have, Conn’s Disease, hypothyroidism and needless to say anxiety and depression. I had a mental health exam per Social Security. Do you think I have a good chance to win Disability benefits?

    • LaLa says:

      I’m 39 year old woma.

    • LaLa says:

      Also I’ve also done desk jobs but with this pain, fatigue and anxiety/depression, I honestly cannot work.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Lala,

      It can be difficult to establish disability when a combination of conditions are causing disability. If she is not approved, I suggest that she appeal with the assistance of an experienced Social Security attorney. She does not have to pay any legal fees up front and she will pay attorney fees only if she is approved for benefits. Social Security law sets the amount her attorney can charge and the Social Security Administration pays the attorney directly from the retroactive award before they send her back pay to her.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  21. Mia says:

    Hi, i just came up for a medical review from my ssa office. I am 29, when i was three i was raped and i have had counseling for years. I have ADD/ADHD, i have depression, as well as thyroid disease, type 2 diabetes, nueropathy, glaucoma, and diabetic eye disease. I have only worked one job in my life and got fired because i couldnt concentrate on the work they gave me. I am wondering if ssa will deny my benefits, as i have no other income and i would become homeless. Will i still recieve SSI benefits?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Mia,

      If you are still disabled and especially if you have been under care for all your limiting conditions so that you have medical records to document your condition, your benefits will be continued. If you receive a notice of determination, you have the right to appeal. If you appeal within ten days, you can ask to have benefits continued while the appeal is decided.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  22. AWCO says:

    Hi. First, thank you for your help. I have Multiple Sclerosis (RR), morbid obesity, PCOS, HBP, sleep apnea, and thyroid modules along with depression/anxiety (that’s not a surprise, lol). Could you gauge my chances for SSD? I’m 45 y.o. and have an advanced degree, but am losing ability to control my arms which I rely on for work. I probably waited too long to apply and am now highly anxious. I applied in September and have been told my state has until Feb 2016 to report back to SS office.

    Any insight is GREATLY appreciated. Thank you.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear AWCO,

      Despite your relatively young age and advanced degree, you could be approved if your MS is sufficiently interfering with your ability to work.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  23. Dwane says:

    Hi, I had a severe brain injury nine years ago, I have PTSD, paranoia, anxiety, depression, mood swings, unable to drive, and seizures to name a few. I have had 20 jobs since my accident, I have been put on medical leave and cannot work unless medically cleared, neurologist has psych eval and many other tests ordered. I cannot stress my brain at all or I start stuttering and basically turn into a vegetable in many ways. I just applied a week ago and I have an attorney ready to help. I was raised to work and that was the only way but I have finally came to terms with the fact that I can’t. Any advice for me? Thank you so much in advance.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Dwane,

      Be sure your attorney has your full work history with stop and start dates so the earliest possible date of onset can be claimed. The reason is to give you the best chance of being insured for Social Security Disability on the date Social Security accepts as you disability date. If each work attempt was short, your onset would not be after your last job; it would be earlier.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  24. Amy Harrison says:

    Dear Kay,
    I saw all your wonderful responses to other people’s concerns/questions so felt I’d ask my own. I’m a disabled Veteran. Currently at 100% due to multiple foot surgeries and have several other conditions (degenerative disc disease/recurring migraines/complex medial meniscus tear/ACL repair/hip & joint issues and the list goes on. It is one thing after another. I recently filed for SSD and am awaiting their response. What are the chances that I can get approved the 1st time around with multiple conditions that disable my ability to obtain and keep employment due to my conditions? I’ve heard conflicting stories (some ppl get approved 1st time, others get denied several times and then approved). Just curious. I have all my medical records through the VA and my doctor is helping me by submitting his own letter to help me get approved. Any tips or ideas to help me win? Thank you!

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Amy,

      I would say that you have a good chance at being approved and possible on initial claim; however, there is no way to know for sure until the review has been completed. If you are denied and disagree with the reasons for denial, you can appeal. If you appeal, I recommend hiring an experienced Social Security attorney. When you hire a Social Security attorney, 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 the retroactive award before sending your back pay to you.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  25. Snana says:

    My husband is trying to get SSDI, has been trying since November 2014 but was disabled November 2013. He is eligible to sign up for Social Security because he will be 62 in February. Can he or should he sign up for Social Security or will it effect his SSDI?

    Thank you for your help

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Snana,

      Your husband can apply for reduced retirement benefits at age sixty-two if he has not been approved for Social Security Disabilit. If later he is approved for disability, he will be switched over to disability. He will receive additional payment for the months he got retirement to bring him up to the higher disability rate for those month

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  26. Julianna says:

    Hello Kay
    I have a few physical issues (moderate bilateral carpal tunnel, Cervical DDD and untreated depression, social anxiety), yet none of these would grant me SSDI alone. However I also have severe/profoundly hearing loss. Deaf in one ear and my most recent test showed PTA average (3 Freqs) at 83.33 and word recognition at 32%

    I have been a dental hygienist for 13 years and part of my job requires excellent communication skills (which I do not possess) and excellent manual dexterity which I am fast losing. I’m 51.
    I wrote an email to a lawyer who said “My gut feeling is that because this is such a cut and dry area with easily definable goals, you may be best served by filing your own claim. Were I you, I would look into finding previous audiology exams before doing anything.”
    My questions are;
    I meet the criteria with the word recognition being that is is now under 40%.
    *Is that enough to get me approved without first being denied.
    *Why would he not want to help me with my application?
    *And why would it be in my best interests to provide older test scores that did not meet listing requirements by the scores themselves and by who administered the test (Hearing aid dispenser vs ENT/AUD)?

    Thanks
    Julianna

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Juliana,

      The attorney must think you will be approved without help. Also, an attorney only gets paid a percentage of back pay; and if you are not going to have much, if any, back pay, it will not be worth his time. (Social Security benefits are not paid for the first five months of disability. If you qualify for Supplemental Security Income, benefits start the month after application but benefits are low so back pay due and attorney compensation are small.

      I think that he is suggesting getting old audiology testing so show that you have had an decline and that that is why you can no longer continue in your job (versus having been working with the same problems). An ENT doctor or audiologist has higher level of training and thus more credibility than a hearing aid dispenser who is not an audiologist.

      When you file the claim, list the carpal tunnel with some loss in dexterity if that is making you work slower or it is causing other problems. If the mental health issues are new, they could also help; however, I think that your are right that probably the hearing is the strongest point especially if your work discrimination problems persist with hearing aids.

      Just a note, you have to stop working or drop your hours so you are earning less than $1,090 per month gross to file the claim. That said, working part-time might be an indication you could work full time because if you can hear well enough to do the job at all, the number of hours is not the issue.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  27. Mike says:

    Hi Kay, Is it a good thing if your attorney requests an OTR? And if so why?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Mike,

      Your attorney has requested an on-the-record (OTR) decision because he or she thinks that the judge may approve your claim without a hearing. If the judge does not approve OTR, then you will get a hearing.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  28. Bev says:

    Hi Kay,
    You mentioned to one of the commentors that many people whom have multiple issues have more chance of getting approved. Im wondering what you think my chances are without an attorney. Im 55 and cant honestly see me working anymore. I have epilepsy(have petit mals every other month,multiple level degenerative disks, spinal stenosis,neuropathy and knee osteorathritis and hip pain/instability.
    I have trouble standing for any longer than 30min and have difficulty sitting for long periods of time, and cant be on cement very long as it hurts my back and even my shins, anyway it was the knee that was the clincher and until i went to pt could barely move it found out that its bone on bone and looking at knee replacement. I just filed and they are reviewing my medical records. Thank you, bev

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Bev,

      I don’t know which of my replies you are referring to, but each person’s medical condition, work history, and general situation is different, even if the diagnoses are the same, so what I may have said about one person’s multiple conditions does not necessarily apply to all. For example, in this case, as a general rule, it is harder to get approved based on multiple conditions when no single one is disabling by itself.

      With regard to your situation, I can’t offer a reliable opinion about your chances of approval because I don’t know your work history, which will be taken into account when they evaluate whether you are unable to work. If you are denied, hire an experienced Social Security attorney to assist with your appeal. When you hire a Social Security attorney, 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 the retroactive award before sending your back pay to you.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Bev says:

        Thank you Kay, I hesistated upon asking my question, and knew you couldnt give me a concrete answer, but the process” is so exasperating that I chose to ask anyway. :)
        I appreciate the advice about the lawyer, it sounds like they are compensated with a percentage of back pay if disability is rewarded. I wonder if I would only get a back pay of 500.00 how much they charge (approximately) the person filing out of pocket?

        Thank you for the site and your hep,
        Bev

        • Kay Derochie says:

          Dear Bev,

          The standard percentage approved by Social Security is 25% with maximum limit of $6,000. Above that you have to reimburse the attorney for out-of-pocket costs such as medical records the attorney pays to get. That is usually in the low hundreds.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  29. Ms.Willams says:

    It’s great how you take the time to give your advice to help others. Thank you so much Kay.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      You are welcome, Ms. Williams.

      • Michelle says:

        Hi Kay I have a ? I have recently been diagnosed with having Suicidal Ideation, PTSD, and MDD (major depressive disorder. I have lost my job due to this and I have been suffering from depression since I was 18. I feel like I might be eligible for SSDI or SSD but I don’t know how to take the first step or how to even start the process to see if I am eligible. I have discharge papers from the Pysch Ward that states my condition. Can you help??

        • Kay Derochie says:

          Dear Michelle,

          I suggest that you read the articles under the “Apply for SSD” tab on the navigation bar of this website. The articles tell you how to get started with your claim. The information under the “Claims Process” tab may be of some help also.

          If you are denied and cannot work, appeal with the help of an experienced Social Security attorney. When you hire a Social Security attorney, 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 the retroactive award before sending your back pay to you.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  30. jessie says:

    I am 32. I havent worked in 10 years. I have sleep apnea, hypothyroidism, high blood pressure, anemia, obesity and also suffer from anxiety and depression, i filed back in may, i went to a mental ce 2 weeks ago…. do u think that i will be denied? How long after a mental ce, does it take to hear something?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Jessie,

      I can’t predict whether you will be denied or approved. At your age, you have to be unable to perform any occupation you have done in the past or any new occupations that you could perform without your impairments. The consulting doctor has three weeks to submit a report. After the report is received, it can take from a couple weeks to a couple months to get a decision depending on the workloads at the time.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • jessie says:

        Thank you. I just got word from the examiner, he got the results from my ce yesterday. He said it was being looked at by doctors. Ive 8nly had 3 jobs in the past. All 3 jobs were cashier jobs, but now im suffering from panic and depression. Everyone keeps telling me that im wasting my time with ssi. But i tried to get a job, it lasted about 4 hours and i quit due to my anxiety. Am i just wasting my time?

        • Kay Derochie says:

          Dear Jessie,

          If you are truly unable to work because of the level of your anxiety, you are not wasting your time trying to get disability benefits. I would encourage you at the same time to pursue counseling and possibly medication for the anxiety.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

        • Ms.Williams says:

          Hello

          I am 37 and been diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, polyostatic fibrous dysplasia, and I have a positive ana (borderline lupus). I suffer from extreme fatigue, depression, and pain.

          Everyday or other day it’s someting different is going on with my body/symptoms. I have enough point to file for disability I am applying for it now do u think I am going to need a lawyer for approval. Is there anything I need to know when filling out papers from office that makes the decision. Any information is greatly appreciated.

          • Kay Derochie says:

            Dear Ms. Williams,

            You can probably file your initial claim on your own. Be sure to answer all the questions on the forms completely in providing information about your health, medical treatment,medical providers, and your work history. The articles under the “Apply SSD” tab on the navigation bar of this site give some tips on filing. If your claim is denied, request a copy of your claim file so you can check to see what evidence is in the file and the exact reason for the denial. If you disagree, hire an experienced Social Security attorney to assist with the appeal. When you hire a Social Security attorney, 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 the retroactive award before sending your back pay to you.

            Sincerely,
            Kay

  31. Tony says:

    Hi I’m 58 just lost my job iv all was hade a learning disability most jobs now you need at least a g e d last time I tryed to get one thay gave me a test the told them I was at a 3 or 4th grad legal could I get diss for that

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Tony,

      Only you can decide whether you will apply for disability benefits. I can give you some general information. Generally, if you lose a job because of a learning disability, you might be able be approved for Social Security if you cannot perform other occupations you have performed in the past. Generally, if you lost your job for other reasons, it would be less likely that you would be approved because you could get another job in the same field with a different employer.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  32. Tom says:

    I have HIV since 2008. ALl forms have been filled out and as much as I don’t want to be on SSI I think I may have to, but was wondering if you knew what my chances are. I am just too sick to hardly do anything lately. Thank you for your time.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Tom,

      If the HIV is limiting you from being able to work, you will be medically approved. To be eligible for Social Security Disability (SSDI), you also have to have sufficient quarters of coverage (work credits) and for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) disability, your income and assets must be within certain limits.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  33. Dennis Reeves says:

    Hello, I was involved in a very serious motorcycle accident a little over 5 years ago. I filed for SSDI after I was finally released from the hospital. I was denied, and went through several appeals, and still ultimately denied. I refiled with an attorney this 2nd time around, and have been through my initial denial, and am waiting for the next round for a hearing. This will take another 12-18 months. Meanwhile, the long term disability insurance purchased through my employer will come to an end in less than 2 months. I have one doctor that says I am able to work, but only when I have 1 thing to do. I am also in the process of starting a new Dr./patient relationship as my currant Dr. is elderly and due to retire (again). When my income from USAble ends, I am likely going to end up homeless. I have been able to keep my residence with my wife, and keep up with my bills to stay current. This will be very challenging, but I have learned that I am able to stay above water for $800.00 each month over the last 5 years, and receiving food stamp benefits for food. I have began looking for any kind of work I might be able to do. So far this has been feeble at best. I do have a couple potential interviews in the upcoming week. I also have found out that driving for a shuttle service is too “brain busy” for me as in the wreck, I suffered multiple injuries, including a compressed skull, and a compounded femur. I had many more injuries, and as I sort of joke around with people, “I was fine from the knees down”. I am a 5 year old in a 46 year old body, and keep getting told to basically suck it up and go back to work. I was told that I could stand at a copy machine and make copies, and there are 455 jobs in my state, and 45,000 across the nation. My reaction to this is sort of, “Who is paying for me to move? and why don’t you give me some locations to these places?” I know of no place that does this, paying someone to make copies. It is very difficult to find anyone willing to take a chance on me. I am not giving up, but would like my government to at least give me some real assistance instead of just saying “I don’t find you to be disabled.” Another major thing I have learned is that the judge asks misleading questions. I have figured out that what I want and what reality is are two entirely different things. After reading some of the other posts, it seems that the more I try to find work and fail, the better my chances are of winning my case. If this is true, this is something I have been leery of doing, but now will seek to add ammo to my case. If you have any other advice, I am all ears…

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Dennis,

      I suggest that, if you are unable to find work soon, you contact your state’s Department of Vocational Rehabilitation and/or organizations like Goodwill to see if you qualify for job training or other services that would lead to finding an occupation you can perform.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  34. juan says:

    I have epilepsy, sizure disorder. Mood disorder. Diabetes, high blood pressure, carpal tunnel.do you think I can quality for disability?

  35. Emily says:

    I am 35 and have been struggling with paranoid schizophrenia and obsessive-compulsive disorder the past 5 years. I received SSDI on my first attempt 3 years ago without any kind of interview with them (I guess my own written account and reports from my psychiatrist/psychologist were sufficient?). My review should be coming up soon. Since my approval, I have moved to another state. My fear is that since I have not been established very long with my new doctors, my review will be denied because of lack of an “established history.” My psychologist assured me today that she didn’t foresee that as being an issue, especially if she was consulted before her retirement next month, but I’m still very worried about it. I would love to re-enter the job force and forget the past few very tough years, but the symptoms are terrible right now and I just can’t do anything productive. I cannot lose my benefits or I’ll be homeless within the next few months. I know you cannot predict what Social Security will do with my case, but do you have any insight on how my limited medical interaction with my new physicians/psychologist will impact my likelihood of being reapproved? Thank you!

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Emily,

      Before your current psychologist retires authorize and be sure that she transfers her records for you to your new mental health professional together with a written authorization from her to the new psychologist to re-release the records to the Social Security Administration when requested. She could also make her last chart note an extensive narrative summary of your condition and current limitations and the rationale for her opinion. It would be good if she also gave you a copy of that letter. When your claim is reviewed, list all the providers you’ve seen since you were approved including those in your former state and the period of time and frequency you saw each. If older records are required, they will be requested.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  36. Donna says:

    Hi I have already had my hearing and was told that I will receive benefits for 16 months of back pay , do you know how long it will take to receive it? Does it depend on my work history, while I was waiting for my hearing with the ALJ ? I was determined that with my fibromyalgia, Lupus(SLE) and GAD , I am eligable . Ty

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Donna,

      If you applied for Supplemental Security Income (SSI), after you receive the formal medical approval letter, it can take a couple weeks to a month or more for benefits to start. Part of your work earnings may reduce your SSI benefits. Social Security Disability will be paid after the SSI has been processed and can take another month to three months for all pament to be issued if you are eligible for both. If you are eligible only for Social Security, the time frame for it could be somewhat shorter. If you worked while your claim was pending and the judge had the information about the work, it should not affect processing time for your Social Security.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  37. Vanessa says:

    What if you have Gaucher Disease ? That would mean that it’s been a disability from birth.

  38. Darlene says:

    Hi Kay

    I have worked as a horse trainer. I’m 52 yrs old. I have not worked for over 5 yrs . My support is ending. I would like to get SSDI. I have Fibromyalgia , chronic fatigue, Bone spurs in my wrists and SI joint, Degenerative arthritis in my spin arthritis in my hands and feet. I had cartilage removed from my right pinky. I can not lift more then 10 lbs. I can not sit or sat for more then 10 – 20 min My right hand hurts to write or just plan work with. Then I use my left and it hurts then too.! I’m in alot of pain. I take pain med as most people like me do. Do you think I could get SSDI? I need help

    Thank you Darlene

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Darlene,

      If you have a narrow work history as a horse trainer, given your age, you might be approved for Social Security Disability (SSDI). To be eligible for SSDI, you have to prove that you became disabled while still insured, which at the latest is five years after you stopped work. If you ceased work because of your medical conditions, you should claim your cease work date as your date of disability and provide medical records from about a year before that to present, plus any earlier records of importance.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  39. robert says:

    kay
    i have just started researching disability benefits. im 63 yrs and for the last year and a half i have worked in a warehouse/driver position. i have had scoliosis, rotator cuff and back arthritis for years and is becoming increasingly worse, making work extremely difficult. i have medical histories for these conditions dating back years. do i have a case and what do you recommend ? thanks

    robert

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Robert,

      At age sixty-three, you have to be disabled from occupations you have done in the past. You do not say what kind of work you did before the warehouse work, so I can’t say much about your chances. If you have done medium or heavy work all your life, you might qualify. I suggest you discuss your physical problems with your physician and describe the physical demands of your past occupations to try to get an opinion from your physician regarding whether you can continue to do those types of work. Also, speak with an experienced attorney about your situation.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  40. Todd says:

    Hi, my name is Todd and I have just received my PI assessment. My injury is to my right ankle. I had a non union fracture which required surgery to repair. The surgery didn’t help and I had another procedure to remove the hardware but that didn’t help either. My injury came on the job as a UPS driver. It has been a 3.5 year ordeal now and it seems as tho things are coming to an end.
    My assessment came back at 5% permanent whole body impairment. I was also given permanent restrictions of limited walking on uneven ground, limited stairs, maximum of 35 pounds lifting if consistent and 50 pounds if only occasionally. I might even have limited standing or walking but not sure. I was told that im basically 100% disabled from my current job and my past work history is pretty much warehouse manual labor. I’ve been at ups for 14 years. I’m curious if you believe that I would qualify for disability benefits? I haven’t worked for 3 years now and don’t really have any job experience in anything that doesn’t go against my restrictions. I’m assuming I’ll be given a settlement in the near future but wanted to ask you about this. I’m 39 years old. Thanks
    Todd

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Todd,

      With your limited work history, you might be eligible because you might not have transferable skills to work in a lighter job. Whether or not you are approved, I suggest that you contact your state’s department of vocation rehabilitation to get help in identifying jobs you might be able to do or to get training to be able to return to a different kind of work.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  41. Timothy Johnston says:

    Hi I have a long story with severe back problems that have required two surgeries about nine years apart to enable me to walk again each time. I’m 54 and permanently disabled according to SS. My final employer for which I worked over 27 years as a blue collar worker carried supplemental income insurance and I purchased on my own additional ehancement from the 60% of salary to the 66.6% of salary level. The private carrier requires continuing proof of disability that need Physician’s statements. My current PCP and 99% (that is a rough estimate not a statistically reasearched figure) of the practitioners of medicine in our local community hospital / clinic have refused to fill out the required form. The two reasons I’ve encountered so far are ” I’m not a disability doctor ” and ” He does not believe in disability.” and always gives a full release within twelve months from surgery. I’m confused about this in two ways. I understand that doctors do not decide disability in the first place they simply provide medical records tests and diagnosis codes, and treatment options if any. Secondly if our society acknowledges the need for disability insurance would not that necessitate that authorized practitioners understand and acknowledge it as well. I suspect that behind the answers given lies the mere reluctance to engage the necessary paperwork and legal cooperation with an often arduous process of assessment. Any wisdom anyone can offer would be appreciated because there are a host of people with these types of problems and not all seem to be getting the help they need. Many have given to society by working hard many years find they are now being tossed aside or allowed to “fall through the cracks” If this is the care we get for having given generously our efforts the next generation needs to be taught to twidle there thumbs while it all comes crashing down for lack of workers available for hire.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Timothy,

      You are correct that long-term disability insurance companies (and Social Security law) do not expect physicians to decide whether an individual is disabled or not. What is needed is a description of the person’s condition including diagnoses and limitations. Usually this information can be obtained be obtained from a primary care physician who is aware of your history and who performs an in office evaluation to see if you still have the same limitations.

      I have heard of doctors who “do not believe in disability” and won’t complete forms; but based on my experience, they make up a small percentage of the profession. Your medical community is apparently an exception. The only suggestions that I have are either to try to establish yourself as a patient of physician in another town, one who will be willing to follow your condition and assess it annually, or to make an appointment with a physiatrist for physical capacities evaluation, which can be expensive.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  42. Lisa says:

    Is bad liver from drinking a deases(sp)? Does it meet the list requirements? Thank you

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Lisa,

      Social Security law prohibits the payment of disability benefits for disability caused by drug addiction or alcoholism or for a condition whose drug addiction and/or alcoholism played a significant role in their disability. That said, I would suggest that the person involved file a claim to get a formal decision. To answer your direct question, whether or not liver disease meets the listings depends on its severity.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  43. marian says:

    I have Genarilized Anxiety Disorder and P.T.S.D and Border Line Personality Disorder I have applied for SSD and just filled out a Adult function report. Will I still have to see a SS D.R. My anxiety is so bad that I have panic attacks at the thought of leaving my house and also have anxiety around people I do not know.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Marian,

      You may still be asked to go to consultative examination. Do be sure to attend the exam because if you do not your claim may be denied. Perhaps you could have someone you trust make the trip to and from the doctor’s office with you.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

      • marian says:

        Thank you if I do have to go I will have my mom go as she takes me where I need to go any way, I don’t drive.

  44. Lisa Nippers says:

    Hi my name is Lisa. I was born with cerebral palsy and with scoliosis. I was denied on my first claim so I appealed the decision with an attorney. It took over a year and finally had a hearing. After my hearing I was told by my attorney it would take about 30 to 90 days for a decision. It’s been about 40 days. I called SS today and the said my decision was made. They told me over the phone I was denied and I’ve not receive a letter or notice from my SSD attorney. Is it possible I’ve been denied or perhaps the person I was speaking to made a mistake? I called my attorney and the secretary tells me they cannot tell me that I’ve been denied over the phone. I know I have enough information needed to present my case. My attorney has all this information also. I was 9 months pregnant at the time of my hearing

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Lisa,

      It is highly unusual that you received a hearing decision over the phone. In fact, I have never heard of it happening. You and your attorney should receive letters at the same time. I suggest calling again and ask whether the decision letter has actually been sent or is being prepared. It seems that in some cases it takes a month or more for the letter to be prepared and mailed after the decision has been made.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  45. Tracey says:

    Hi,

    I have fibroid myalgia, high blood pressure, rheumatoid arthritis in remission and Degenerative changes at
    bilateral radiocarpal joints. Right scapholunate disassociation with
    distal radius extending into the scapholunate space. Apparent
    ankylosis between the left distal radius and lunate and Patient has evidence of chronic wrist joint space narrowing and degenerative changes Will I be approved?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Tracey,

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

      Whether or not you are approved will depend on how and how much your conditions limit you and whether or not you can perform substantial gainful activity (SGA) in an occupation you have performed in the past and, if you are under age fifty, other occupations you could perform.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  46. Alyssa Price says:

    Hi I have OCD depression and anxiety but not a lot of history and I’ve never been able to stay at a job longer than a year because of these issues. I also have to be diagnosed for a foot problem that causes me to be unable to walk real good and not stand for long periods of time but little to no doctor history. Will I still be eligible for ssi disability?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Alyssa,

      Many people are approved for Social Security and SSI disability for multiple conditions, such as you have, even when they do not have much medical history. But it’s not easy! You need an attorney who really knows Social Security law and procedures to present your claim to the Social Security Administration.

      With the proper help from a qualified attorney, you can get disability benefits if you are disabled according Social Security’s rules. There’s no obligation for a consultation. And, when you hire one of their attorneys, you pay for their services only if you win your claim and get benefits!

      Best regards,

      Kay

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