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What is a Social Security Request for Reconsideration?

By   /  March 3, 2016  /  240 Comments

Learn how to appeal a denied disability claim with a Social Security Request for Reconsideration and how a lawyer can help you win.

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Watch the Video: "What is a Social Security Request for Reconsideration?"

Filing Your Social Security Request for Reconsideration

If your initial disability claim is denied, the first appeal you can file is a Social Security Request for Reconsideration. When you file a Request for Reconsideration, you will be asked to complete a reconsideration request form and to provide information about any changes in your health and any work you have done since you filed your claim. You will also be asked the reasons why you think the denial determination is wrong. This means that you will need to understand why Social Security denied your initial claim, so that you can effectively prove your case and be approved.

Refuting Social Security’s Reasons for Denial

Sometimes a person’s claim is denied because Social Security says the disability won’t last for twelve months. In that case, a reconsideration claiming that disability will continue for twelve months can result in an approval simply because, by the time the reconsideration is processed, twelve months will have passed and current medical information will show that disability continues.

At other times, how DDS arrived at their decision is not as clear. You have the right to obtain a copy of, and review, your claim file, including the determination memos. Social Security can, however, at its discretion, decline to release your medical records and doctor’s reports, including any consultative examination reports, directly to you. They will, however, release them to an attorney who represents you or, in some cases, to your physician. It could be helpful to have a lawyer who is experienced with Social Security Disability review your claim file to determine what is needed to win the appeal. See our article “How Can a Social Security Disability Lawyer Help Me Get Social Security Benefits?” for more information on how an attorney can help your case.

Sixty-day Deadline to Appeal

There is a time limit for filing a Social Security Request for Reconsideration. You must file your appeal within sixty days of receiving your denial letter. Social Security allows five days from the date on the letter for delivery. This means that Social Security must receive your reconsideration request within sixty-five days of the date on the denial letter. Filing the appeal on time is very important because if you fail to do so, you will most likely lose your right to appeal. It is only very rarely that Social Security allows a late appeal, and then only because the claimant couldn’t respond sooner because of very severe limitations, such as an extended hospital or nursing home stay.

The Reconsideration Review and Appealing Again

Physicians and claims examiners at the Disability Determination Services who were not involved with your initial claim will review your Request for Reconsideration. If your disability claim is denied at the reconsideration appeals level, you can appeal again by requesting a hearing. For more information about the Social Security disability appeals process in general and hearings in particular, please see our articles “I Was Denied Social Security Disability. What Can I Do?” and “What is a Social Security Disability Hearing, and What Can I Expect When I Request a Disability Hearing?”

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  • Published: 5 months ago on March 3, 2016
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  • Last Modified: March 4, 2016 @ 4:02 pm
  • Filed Under: Appeals

240 Comments

  1. Scott Dyben says:

    Hi Kay,

    I filed for SSD in June 2015. After filling out and returning a number of forms, I began to receive requests for details on my work history. Ms. K. Evans from Indianapolis, IN. is my case representative and I have been in contact with her thru written responses, verbal response over the phone at her request and several messages left on her Voicemail. In each case I gave detailed info on my work history.

    Then the letters began to arrive that I had 10 days to respond to the work history requests or the possibility of denial could result. I called a couple more times and she did not respond to my messages asking her to call me back and confirm the dates and times I wrote down clearly giving this information. I just received a letter of denial claiming those in charge of the review had no information regarding my work history to evaluate my claim for Disability.

    I immediately went Online and filled out the form for reconsideration, again giving all details of my work history. Is Ms. Evans willfully ignoring the fact that I contacted her several times?

    As an Honorably discharged US Army veteran at nearly 55 years of age, I only recently became so financially destitute so as to qualify for full coverage from the VA. My medical exams and test results, along with Physical and Occupational Therapy are well documented. This began in April 2015 and continues till this day. Why did she do this to me ?

    Sgt. Scott T. Dyben

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Scott,

      Clearly, some lack of coordination has occurred. If the person you were communicating with was in the local office and not in the Disabilty Determination Services (DDS) that might account for it. Also, verbal versus written communication could be the issue. Form SSA-3369 is how work information is usually captured. A printable copy of this form can be obtained at https://www.ssa.gov/forms/ssa-3369.pdf. I suggest that you review it to see if the work information you provided for the appeal addressed everything asked for on the form. If not, I suggest completing the form and submitting it’ even if part of the information duplicates what you previously submitted.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

    • Annie says:

      Dear Kay,
      If I did a reconsideration on a denial! How long will it take 4 me to get an answer?

  2. Karen says:

    Dear Kay
    Can I ask my attorney to file a dire need in my reconsideration appeal?

    • Karen says:

      I have 2 new medications that have been up to higher doses is that new information considered in my reconsideration? also my psychiatrist is leaving going elsewhere in August. Do you think I should ask him for a statement to help my social security disability before he leaves ?would that help also I didn’t have a statement from him in my application process.

      • Kay Derochie says:

        Dear Karen,

        I’d say that getting a statement from your current psychiatrist is very important. I suggest that you discuss this with your attorney to see if he wants the statement to made on any particular form or any particular points to be addressed. Also, let your attorney know about the medication increases so that information can be submitted.

        Sincerely,
        Kay

          • Kay Derochie says:

            You are welcome, Karen.

          • Karen says:

            Hi Kay I received a MRFC form from my attorney turned it in to my psychiatrist also turned in my medications that have been up to higher doses to my attorney. I have a question? My diagnosis are generalized anxiety, ADHD, major depression and mood disorders.I received my high school records of the last two grades i was in which were 9th and 10th grade it also shows that I had an IEP also that I missed a hundred and fifty-four days between both grades and all semesters I have nothing but failing grades of Fs . Do you think this will be good to show for my appeal for my education?

          • Kay Derochie says:

            Dear Karen,

            If you can establish that you were missing school and failing classes due to your mental health, I would think that the records and the IEP would be helpful to your claim. I suggest that you show them to your attorney so the attorney can decide.

            Sincerely,
            Kay

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Karen,

      Yes, you can do that if you are without or in danger of losing shelter or cannot get some needed medical care.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  3. Julie says:

    Hi,
    My claim was denied based on 2 very ancillary medical aspects that were NOT the foundation of it (but SS paperwork collection case person said to include the whole picture). Denial letter listed what reports they had and did NOT list reports from the two professionals at core of claim. New York State does not have reconsideration (a “prototype” state). Do I have ANY recourse to address what I see as clear ERROR other than waiting a year or more for a hearing? I’m having Allsup represent me for the appeal, but would having a lawyer re: the error speed anything up or make hearing unnecessary, or is that just not an allowed route?

    Thanks very much for your help.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Julie,

      I believe that you will have to appeal, but double check with Allsup. Also get a copy of your claim file to see whether the records in question are even in file.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Na Thomas says:

        My claim was denied because my illness was not to last over a 12 month span on February. I have stage 3 colon cancer that received 6 months of chemotherapy. March while receiving chemotherapy I caught a mild stroke which has left my right side of my body useless. Currently I am receiving physical therapy. Reconsideration was submitted to Social Security late March about my case. What puzzles me I keep receiving a third party questionaire for my mother. My mom passed away in April and I have told this to the worker handling my appeal but they keep coming in my mailbox biweekly. The worker received all the new medical records and physical therapy reports. So my question is how much longer will it take for a decision? Also is it some kind of scam that I keep receiving third party questionaire for my deceased mom to fill out? Is the questionaire the hold up?

        • Kay Derochie says:

          Dear Na,

          The repeat questionnaires may be due to an automated computer follow-up that the claims examiner forgot to cancel.. I suggest that you call the examiner at the Disability Determination Services again and tell him or her that you are still getting requests for the questionnaire and that you are concerned this is holding up your appeal. Ask if a realistic rough estimate can be given of when a decision will be made.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

    • Nona Dalaciao says:

      Hi Kay
      I apologize for using the reply button but I didn’t know how to submit a question. I first applied for disability July 2015 and was denied in December 2015 because they stated I was making substantial income. I appealed in December 2015 because my condition worsen, I lost my job, and they left some of my medical records out. I’ve had 4 brain bleeds, numbness in my left side, constant migraines, and severe carpel tunnel in both hands and it has moved up to my shoulder on the right side-all this have occurred with in this past year. Also, I’ve spoken to my examiner several times updating her. I’ve also had several failed job attempts. At the beginning of May 2016 a decision still haven’t been made I was told it left the examiner and sitting on the doctors desk and two weeks later went to another doctors desk. When I called June 1, 2016 I spoke to a lady in my examiner office who told me to call at the end of this week they should have a decision that they were tying up some loose ends. Is this normal? Do you think it could be a favorable or partial favorable decision? Thanks

      • Kay Derochie says:

        Dear Nona,

        Your claim is being looked at closely, which is good if you are disabled under Social Security law. It is less likely that something will be overlooked. When you call, you will be told whether a decision has been made, but you will won’t be told what the decision is. You will have to wait for a letter for that.

        Sincerely,
        Kay

        • Nona Dalaciao says:

          Thanks Kay

        • Nona Dalaciao says:

          Hi Kay I called today and spoke with my examiner and she stated that the decision had been made and I will get a letter in the mail in two weeks. If I go to the local office will they tell me what the decision was? or do I have to wait on the letter? is their anyway I can tell before I get the letter whether or not if it was approve or denied?

          • Kay Derochie says:

            Dear Nona,

            The local office will be notified at the same time you are, so you will have to wait for the letter.

            Sincerely,
            Kay

          • Nona Dalaciao says:

            Thanks Kay
            So that’s why when I went to the local office the decision still showed pending even though the examiner told me she had made her decision. I was thinking maybe it was a denial letter. So when the letter come it can be an approval or a denial?

          • Kay Derochie says:

            Dear Nona,

            Yes, you are correct.

            Sincerely,
            Kay

  4. Very_Confused says:

    Is it possible to be denied SSI and approved for SSDI? I received a denial letter for SSI, but was told my case was still rendering a decision on the SSDI claim. Is that even possible? If your denied for SSI ……is that an automatic denial for SSDI??

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Very Confused,

      Your SSI denial letter probably gives a non-medical reason for the denial–too high income or too high resources. Social Security’s non-medical requirement is having enough Social Security work credits. So, yes, it is possible to be denied SSI and approved for SSDI.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  5. lisa washington says:

    my attorney did an otr for me. How long does it take a judge to review and otr.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Lisa,

      I am unable to predict how long it will take the judge to review your appeal and decide whether a favorable decision can be made on the record (OTR) or a hearing is needed.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  6. Brandi says:

    My friend filed for disability because he is completely deaf. The Dr social security sent him to said for him to be able to hear and understand the noise level would have to be as loud as a jet engine. He has always worked in construction and now is a liability in that line of work because of his disability. He also is very self conscious about his disability and rarely leaves his home unless absolutely necessary. His claim was denied which has put him father in depression. He doesn’t have insurance. Is there anything he can do now to get his disability?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Brandi,

      If he was denied less than sixty days ago, he can appeal. If it has been longer, he can file a new claim. He can also get a mental health evaluation so that the depression is severe it can be considered.

      I recommend that he hire an experienced Social Security attorney to help 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 your retroactive award before they send your back pay to you.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  7. Melissa Cox says:

    Hey kay
    My husband’s case is in the reconsideration stage and it was sent to the Mississippi office and I’m in ga. Why would they send it there for in this stage
    Melissa

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Melissa,

      Your husband can ask why his claim was transferred. Perhaps the office in Mississippi is more caught up in their workload and can process it faster than your husband’s Georgia office.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  8. melissa cox says:

    Dear kay my husband is 57 and has 3 stents in his heart hep c low blood plattlets cirrohsis of the liver and diabetteted
    and received his first denial letter and now is in reconsideration stage we hsve filrd the appeal
    the first denial stated that he could sdjust to other work
    what is his chances with his age.
    thanks melidsa

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Melissa,

      Your appeal has to refute his ability to work in other new occupations. If you have not already done so, I suggest that your husband hire an experienced Social Security attorney. When he hires a Social Security attorney, he does not have to pay any legal fees up front and he will pay attorney fees only if he is approved for benefits. Social Security law sets the amount his attorney can charge and the Social Security Administration pays the attorney directly from the retroactive award before they send his back pay to him.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  9. Nancy Morgan says:

    My daughter, 45 yrs old., has been receiving Social Security Disability for 4 yrs. she has Crohn’s disease in her colon, has a fistula and Hydradinitis Supervita. Recently, she received a call that she needed to see one of their doctors ~ this after we had completed the forms they submitted requesting, basically, the same info as the original application.

    She can not work because she has diarrhea 5 to 6 times daily, the HS flares up in the groin area often and in not describe here the issues she has with the fistula.

    She went to their doctor, he had her look u/look down. Arms up/down… No physical exam at all, the doctor did inquiry about the HS and said, he could not do an exam on her, he would have to ask his report on her doctor(s)notes. She still takes oral meds and Remicade IVs every 6 weeks.

    The question… If if they deny her benefits, can we Appeal based on this doctor NOTdoing a physical exam, as it pertained to her illness that is disabling her?

    Thank you for any information you may provide ~ just in case.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Nancy,

      If your daughter receives an unfavorable decision, I suggest that she appeal and get a copy of her claim file so she can see the exact reasons and address those reasons. If the basis of the denial is the consultative physician’s report, she can tell what transpired at the exam. That said, it could be to her advantage that the consulting physician depended on her own doctor’s notes.

      If she has to appeal, it would also be helpful for her to hire 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

  10. Evie Walker says:

    Hi,
    I wrote a bit ago about my workers comp offset dropping off and how long before adjustment is made. I decided to email them about it and just received a letter stating they were changing the amount, but as of Feb instead of September as I was originally told by 2 representatives in our local office. What is the best way to try to get this resolved as of September and not Feb.? I’m glad it’s finally been changed, but want the monies I am due… Thank you so much for your prompt help!

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Evie,

      I suggest that you wait for the change to take effect and for you receive the Notice of Change letter. From that time, you have sixty days to appeal the calculation, specifically the first month the offset did not apply.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  11. Celine says:

    I applied in October 8,2015 with lawyer. I was denied on January 19, 2016. They said in the letter that I can still do work that is less demanding and not stressful. The letter also stated that vocational rehab couldn’t determine if any work could be done. I didn’t go to any of the CE doctors. I have filed for a reconsideration. My question is how does this work if I’m not able to work in a environment that is stressful and demanding why was I not found disabled. All work is stressful and demanding even by vocational rehabilitation statement

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Celine,

      I can’t say for sure what the statement about the vocational rehabilitation report means because I don’t have detailed information about our claim. I recommend that you discuss the denial with your attorney and that you request that he or she get a copy of your claim for to see what is in file and to review the denial decision memo in file for the exact reasons for the denial.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Celine says:

        Hi Kay,

        I received a letter from Social Security Disability yesterday but on the envelope it came from ODO Disability Processing Branch. They stated they needed a Daily Function Form filled out to complete claim. I’m in the reconsideration stage. Why would they need a new form? And why didn’t it go back to a different DDS examiner? Is this a good sign and does the ODO does something different?

        Celine

        • Kay Derochie says:

          Dear Celine,

          If am not sure why ODO would be involved, but it might be that DDS made a decision and it was pulled for a quality review and the request for the Daily Function Form is part of that. Regardless of the reason, complete the form fully and submit it promptly.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

          • Celine says:

            So ODO is a part of quality review department? I have sent the forms back. Do you know how long it will take for them to make a decision. They say this department is a much higher level then the rest of Social Security Disability Branch is this true. Oh I filed for the reconsideration on February 11, 2016.

          • Kay Derochie says:

            Dear Celine,

            The Office of Disability Operations performs various payment review functions and has different responsibilities than the local offices. Some of those duties can include quality review. I cannot predict how long it will be before the review has been completed, but reconsiderations often take two to five months.

            Sincerely,
            Kay

          • Tarsha says:

            Hey I did my reconsideration in February and they sent me a letter asking now have my condition worsen all kind of question can I do yard work things of that nature I’m I getting close to decision and is that kind of good because my condition has worsened

          • Celine says:

            Hello Kay,

            OK I am back DDS sent me to a Mental CE Exam on May 24,2016. Just a note I have been in the reconsideration stage since February 11, 2016 and filled and sent back the function form in March. Is it normal for them to still have not made a decision? Remember my case was with the ODO. I have checked and they say case is still pending and should know something by this week or by July 29. Please if any idea how much longer and is this a usual case.

          • Kay Derochie says:

            Dear Celine,

            I would trust the time frame given to you. It can often take a couple months or even more after a consultative examination to get a decision as the consulting physician has three weeks to submit the report.

            Sincerely,
            Kay

  12. DiAnn says:

    I was granted disability in 2005 after a mental break in AZ. Moved to MS in 2009 In 2014 was sent review papers, filled them out and returned with more medical conditions added due to back problems from working in nursing homes for 14 years. In 2015 was determined ” no longer disabled”. Filed necessary paperwork for reconsideration just now a year later I got notice for the hearing. I see pain Dr regular, and psychologist, on narcotic and muscle relaxer daily must a depression medication.just to bairly function at home yet still in pain. Was on harder drugs in AZ but don’t have much memories from them so when I moved to MS requested less dosage drugs so I wasn’t drugged all the time. In more pain daily but at least have some memories now. Drs have advised I can not work. Considering that I take narcotics 3 times a day am not even supposed to drive. How can they say I am no longer disabled and can return to work. That was the only explanation I received?

    • DiAnn says:

      How should I handle this hearing on the 9 of march.being I am on disability already, since I chose to continue payment or lose my home and have no back pay to hire somebody will have to help myself.

      • Kay Derochie says:

        Dear DiAnn,

        Answer all questions honestly. Be thorough but don’t exaggerate. Describe what your typical day is like, that is, how limited you are. Include that you had pain meds reduced because of the negative impact on your mental function, but your health is worse now than when you were approved. Be sure the judge is aware of all your conditions and all your medical providers.

        If a vocational expert testifies that there are occupations you can perform, but you don’t think you can because of certain limitations you have or because of the need for frequent absences because of bad days or mental fogginess due to meds and pain, etc., you should ask the expert if you could do the job with those limitations and name them.

        Sincerely,
        Kay

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear DiAnn,

      If you can do so fast enough before the hearing, ask for a copy of your claim file from the hearing office so you can see the exact reasons your claim was closed. That way, you can be specific about what is incorrect in the file. Also, at the hearing explain what you have explained to me about your condition.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  13. Sharlene says:

    I’m legally blind and can no longer drive. I have Optic Nerve Atrophy, which is on the SSA compassion allowance list. I has. Case worker through Bureau of Visually impaired. Which then became Opportunities for Ohioans with Disabilities. They put my in a class through the Cleveland sight center to learn customer service skills and then set me up to work from home with a cctv and large screen monitor and vision software…. Yet… I was denied disability. I hired a disability attorney to help me file. He has filed for reconsideration in December 2015. It went back to DDS and now I’m told it’s been with QR since 1/22/16.

    • Sharlene says:

      From my understanding… People who have blindness or low vision are able to work and collect disability. I’m hoping this is the case.

      • Kay Derochie says:

        Dear Sharlene,

        Individuals who are blind can be receive Social Security Disability benefits while working if their work earnings are less than $1,820 gross per month. Countable gross earnings can be reduced by Impairment-Related Work Expenses.You can learn more about Impairment-Related Work Expenses in Social Security’s Red Book at http://www.ssa.gov/redbook/eng/ssdi-and-ssi-employments-supports.htm

        If you returned to work and perform SGA before being disabled for twelve months, your claim would be denied. If you returned to work after twelve months of disability, your claim could be approved with various work incentives that allow for continuing payment for specified periods of time. Information is available in Social Security’s Red Book. (See the link above.)

        Sincerely,
        Kay

  14. Michael says:

    I just had my hearing the first week of feb 2016 for SSD judge told me everything looks great you have proven that you are disabled you and your lawyer did a great job presenting your case,BUT your onset date of 2007,judge said he needs documents showing treatment or diagnosis.The judge gives us 30 days to produce any and all document.As i look for documents search high and low no luck finding in my possession or checking with doctors and insurance company.Those records are over than 7 years old how can i get them if doctors only have to keep them for 7years???any suggestions

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Michael,

      I suggest going for the oldest records that are available and get all those records up to the oldest ones already submitted and submit those telling the judge that the older records have been purged by the medical providers and the insurance company. Also, if you itemize tax deductions and still have tax returns from those years, you might have records there.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Michael says:

        thx for the info i will keep you posted after reading all your comments its a case by case decision the judge has to make i just hope he pleads with me on the fact of these records are purged and not avail.We have 25 more days to respond please if you have any added info please let me know and thank you once again.

  15. Beth says:

    Hello- I was out on short-term disability thru my employer from Jan-July 2015 for a bipolar psychotic break. I then attempted to go back to work, but was unable to stay at quit in January 2016. I have been told that I will not qualify b/c I was able to work for 12 months prior, but I don’t think the SSA understands that the income I received for 6 months in 2015 was disability pay, not wages earned. I was also told that because I had held jobs for the past 10 years, I wasn’t eligible. I haven’t applied yet based on this info I received during a phone call with the SSA- if I do, and I’m denied for the reasons they stated, how can I make my case work? I have held jobs for the past 10 years, but I’ve done a lot of job hopping due to attendance or performance-related issues to my illness. I now have no income and no insurance- so I cannot get my meds or see my doctors. From April-June 2015 I was in a partial hospitalization (day) program, but now that I don’t insurance they won’t take me. I’m scared another breakdown is coming and it will be much worse as I don’t have any resources. I’m so stressed about no insurance and no income.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Beth,

      File an application for Social Security Disability. Claim the date you stopped work in January 2015 as your disability date. List the work from July (exact date if you can get it) to January 2016 as an unsuccessful work attempt. Also, list on the application that you received short-term disability (STD) insurance for the period you were off between January and July and that it may show up as earnings. If you have proof of the STD payments, submit a copy of the documents that show the start and stop dates and the amount.

      Actually, you need enough work taxed by Social Security, particularly in the ten years before your disability began to qualify for SSDI benefits, so either the information you received was incorrect or you misunderstood.

      Now that you do not have STD benefits, you can also apply for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) as well. You can find information about filing a claim under the Apply for SSD tab on the navigation bar at the top of this website. Under the SSI tab you will find an article that explains the difference between Social Security and SSI.

      If you have not had psychiatric care since you stopped work, try to find a low cost or free county clinic for the short run. If you are within sixty days of losing your health insurance, you can apply for subsidized (possibly free) health insurance under the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare). You can get more information and apply at http://www.healthcare.gov. You will need the date your insurance ended. If you are not within sixty days, contact your state or county social services to find out whether there is any health insurance or free mental health care available in your county.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  16. Adam says:

    I applied for SSDI in November 2015 I have morbid obesity sleep apnea severe knee and back pain high blood pressure depression and frequent migraines from a traumatic head injury I suffered when I was a kid I went to a physical exam provided by social security and the examiner said there is no reason why I shouldn’t be approved yet I was denied on January 21 2016 why was I denied even though the examiner said I was disabled

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Adam,

      The consulting physician does not make the decision on your claim. Instead he or she provides a medical report that the claims examiner evaluates along with the rest of the information in your claim file. If you believe you cannot work, I suggest that you appeal with the assistance of an experienced 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

      • Adam says:

        Thank you

        • Kay Derochie says:

          You are welcome, Adam.

          • Adam says:

            I have one more question in your experience with dealing with these situations is it better for a applicant to file reconsideration by their self or have a ss attorney do it?

          • Kay Derochie says:

            Dear Adam,

            In your situation where you are affected by multiple illnesses it is usually best to have an attorney help you with the reconsideration. However, if you are good with business matters and have an analytical mind, you can request a copy of your claim file to see the exact reasons for the denial and address the reconsideration appeal to those points.

            Sincerely,
            Kay

  17. Tequla Ford says:

    If i was receiving SSDI and i stopped recieving after i went back to work .Then i reapply due to my illness returning.They automatically gave me
    expidited benefits until they made a decision,Then i was denied i then did a appeal.I finally won that appeal do i get back pay back i waited on the appeal for the approval for 4 months,do i get back pay someone help me out.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Tequla,

      If you were found to be disabled when you stopped work again and it was less than five years after your benefits were first terminated, you will receive back pay to when the payments during the expedited review ended.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

    • A.D .Mack says:

      Why would I be have to go in front of the alj for my disability if I had a stroke and the doctor filled out a RFC form with my info and everything that was needed and stated that I am not able to work anymore and the reasons why and answered everything that needed to be answered and I still have to go in front of the alj because social disability claims they didn’t get the paper work that my lawyer sent and I also faxed to them,all I know is that someone is lying can I do anything at all or just wait for my court date!

  18. Kathy Brandenburg says:

    Is it a waste of time to takes the last step and sue the govt or ssa to review your case. What are your chances of winning.

  19. valencia williams says:

    Hi I use to receive ssi in 2011 I reapplied in2013…. I also had got a lawyer from the Cochran firm who I asked could she get me expidited benefits since its been less then five years that I use to receive them she told me they don’t do that….I didn’t look into it further I just let it go. I later was dropped from her case. I went in front of the judge on sept 1st of 2015 and he had no idea I use to receive it he tried pulling up my files but they wouldn’t come up…..OK its almost February and I called today to check on my appeal the guy said my file was updated on Jan 5th and they are waiting for a judges decision and it could take between 30-90 days. could this mean that he got all or none of the information he was looking for and will soon make a decision?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Valencia,

      Expedited Reinstatement means that a medical review would be made quickly and if you were disabled benefits would start faster. It does not guarantee reinstatement.

      If you were receiving SSI (Supplemental Security Income), Expedited Reinstatement does not apply. If you were receiving SSDI (Social Security Disability), Expedited Reinstatement could apply if your benefits stopped because of your work activity and you stopped work again due to the same condition(s).

      I can’t say what the referenced update consists of. You might be able to find out what the information received on January 5 consisted of or at least where it came from by asking the hearing office. (Usually prior claims files are not reviewed for current claims.)

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  20. Carol says:

    I am receiving SSD & have been since Dec 2002 due to breast cancer. It was already in the lymphnodes. In July 2004 it spread to both lungs. Social Security is now doing a redetermination (I think that’s what it is). Unfortunately due to chemo, radiation & many surgeries I suffer from many other medical problems. I take many medications & use oxygen 24/7. My doctors sent in the paperwork needed. I also went to a doctor that Social Security set up. A few of my medications are for pain, the pain will never go away. My question is approximately how long does this process take? If it is determined that I can work, I can’t pass a drug test, how does this work? If it is determined that I can work & SSD is canceled I will no longer have medical insurance, what can I do? I live by myself & have no other income.

    Thank you
    Carol

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Carol,

      Be sure all your symptoms, problems, treatment, side-effects have been reported. Based on the information you have given, I think it is likely that your benefits will be continued. If you get a notification of termination, appeal within ten days and you can choose to have benefits continue during the appeal. If necessary, appeal to the hearing level. If your Medicare stops and you apply within sixty days of the Medicare ending, your may be eligible for health insurance through the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare). More information is available at http://www.healthcare.gov.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  21. Shannon says:

    Hello,
    My Aunt had a stroke, fell and broke her femur bone, had surgery with metal rods and pins to fix the break, and has neck issues from a car accident. Her first claim was denied. She then was diagnosed with a mass in her foot and needs surgery (which she can’t afford).She appealed within the allotted amount of time.(no attorney) it has been 1 year and 3 months since her first appeal. I’ve heard first appeals don’t take this long? Any idea why a first appeal with new diagnosis would take so long? Any advice would be SO appreciated! Thank you.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Shannon,

      Your aunt could call the Disability Determination Services (DDS) office that is handling the appeal and speak with the claims examiner to find out if she needs to submit anything further for her appeal to be decided. She might politely indicate it has been pending over a year and ask if the examiner needs updated information since the appeal was filed. Hopefully, the call will bump the appeal to the top of the pile.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Shannon says:

        Kay,

        Thank you for your prompt reply! She has called on several occasions and was told they needed nothing more. They said they are now just waiting. I appreciate your advice in the matter, though. I Guess it’s just a waiting game at this point.

        Sincerely,

        S. Hudson

        • Kay Derochie says:

          You are welcome, Shannon.

          • Teila Summers says:

            Hi I was curious to know my 10 year old son went in front of the judge April 12 I called too check the status and the judge already made a decision less than a month it’s pending a writer now. Is that a good sign that he got a decision less than a month? We have been going through this since 2013.

          • Kay Derochie says:

            Dear Teila,

            How quickly you get a decision is not an indication of either approval or denial.

            Sincerely,
            Kay

  22. rob says:

    PLEASE HELP:
    -I am self-employed and an overpayment was projected. After I filed taxes the overpayment was not the case so I was shorted on my SSI benefits.

    - my son’s health improved and was taken off SSI.
    -Now getting overpayment notices. File waiver, denied
    -Filed Reconsideration for SSI Overpayment, supplying Tax Returns for proof. Reconsideration was DENIED stating Child Not Eligible for SSI. This was NOT why we filed, it was for the overpayment.

    Local office gave us no help and states we have to appeal.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Rob,

      Be sure to appeal because the denial of the appeal on the fact of the overpayment is based on a reason that does not make sense. Be sure in your appeal to state that you are appeal the calculation of your son’s benefits while he was eligible. Collection efforts should stop during the appeal.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  23. Tina says:

    Hello kay, I applied for ssi for my daughters one is 6 the other 12. I was approved for the 6 year old because she has an IEP. Oh plus both if them are in speech therapy. My 12 year old was denied. Now she has an IEP plan also. I appealed the decision in its in submitted the new evidence. Do you think she will be approved??

  24. Suzzette Meyer says:

    Hello Kay;

    I need to get a copy of my sons and my denial letters because I have lost them in moving. Can I obtain these online or must I go in person? Thank you in advance.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Suzzette,

      I suggest that you call the office that sent the denial letters, either the Disability Determination Services (DDS) or the hearing office for the duplicate copies. If they cannot provide the duplicates, try calling Social Security at 1-800-772-1213 and ask how you can get the replacements. If you are planning to appeal, be aware of the sixty-day appeals period. Another way to get them is to request a copy of the entire claim file, which if you are going to appeal would be helpful to have.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  25. JayM says:

    I am going to turn 55 years old in December 2015, I was diagnosed with ILD/IPF ( disease that has no cure) in 2011, I have severe back, neck and shoulder pain, along with heart disease. I was denied twice, I went before ALJ on October 2015. I was treated like a criminal and the Judge made it look like I was faking it all. I have all the doctors backing me up and say that I am disabled. I cannot sleep due to shortness of breath, I cannot walk more than 25 feet without shortness of breath. I have lost all hope in this system. My Lawyer says it is completely up to the Judge, no one is willing to hire me and I have not worked in the last two years. No money, nothing to eat and depressed. I have worked for 30 years and when I need help I get kicked around and get treated like a criminal.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Jay,

      If you are denied by the judge, discuss with your attorney whether you have grounds to appeal. The only other suggestion I have for you is to apply for SNAP (formerly called food stamps) so that you have a supply of food.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Linda,

      If you want to place a paid ad on this site, send me another comment saying so and I will forward your contact information to our ad manager.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  26. Aprill says:

    Hello Kay
    I was getting Ssdi and in December of 2014 they made me see one of their drs for a review. 3 weeks later in January I got the letter that they cut me off. My last payment was March 2015. I filed my appeal March 10th so it was within the 60 day period. They received it March 13,2015 I have signed and authorized all my medical records and seen their dr again which diagnosed me with anxiety disorder ontop of my physical problems. This is 7 months later and still don’t have a decision. Is this normal? In this 7 months I’ve also had more surgeries for my knees that clearly show my disability. Thank you

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear April,

      Your appeal has pended longer than usual. I suggest that you call the Disability Determination Services (DDS) that is doing the medical review of your appeal. Ask to speak to the examiner. Then politely inquire about what is still needed for a decision on your appeal that has been pending seven months. Say that you have additional medical documentation to support your disability in that your worsening, rather than improving, knee condition has necessitated additional surgeries. Give him or her the hospital and doctor(s) contact information associated with your knee care since March 2015. Ask whether DDS will request the documentation or you should have the records sent.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Aprill says:

        I wrote them a letter and gave to my lawyer. They have all the medical records form all the surgeries and appointments from march of this year aND on. I called my lawyer everytime I had an appointment and what it was for. They said they would forward all info to social security. Should I have my lawyer call them or should i? And thank you for your reply

        • Kay Derochie says:

          Dear April,

          You can try calling. They may give you the information or they may say your lawyer has to check to be sure it has been received.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  27. Polly says:

    Hi I was on disabilty and then taken off but was still receiving half of my money. Then I was reconsider for it and was approved and the letter states that if this changes my amount I would get another letter so half of my money was taken away but still get some on the 3rd of ever month. My question is I have been waiting 9 weeks and heard nothing. Will I receive more money and if yes when also will I receive back pay? Thank you

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Polly,

      I have never heard of anyone getting half of their Social Security while an appeal was pending; so, unfortunately, I can’t answer your question.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Renee says:

        My son got denied for ssi then we went to court and the judge asked questions to me and my son who is 11. Towards the end I told him I had paper work of his recent grades the judge told me that was fine he didn’t need then he have some of his grades and behavior history in front of him. At the end he said it takes 30 to 90 days for an answer but mine won’t take that long it won’t be long. Do you know what that means. I didn’t have a lawyer.

        • Kay Derochie says:

          Dear Renee,

          I think that the judge was saying that he had enough information to made a decision. I could be wrong, but I think that the decision might be favorable given that he said he didn’t need to see more evidence.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

      • Polly says:

        I am receiving money from ssa but for ssi my money was taken away and i want to know if i will receive more money and back pay and thank you

        • Kay Derochie says:

          Dear Polly,

          I am unable to answer your question without more information. Why were you benefits stopped.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

          • Polly says:

            Hi and I was told I was no longer found to be disable then I received a letter saying I was reconsider and was approved but I am receiving ssa and it has been 12 weeks since I was approve for disability but have not heard anything . My question is will I receive the money that was taken away and if so will I receive back pay? Thank you for answering my questions

          • Kay Derochie says:

            Dear Polly,

            When your benefits are reinstated, they should be paid back to the month they stopped. I suggest that you follow up about payment given that it has been three months since you got the letter saying benefits would be reinstated.

            Sincerely,
            Kay

          • Polly says:

            Hi Kay,
            And thank you for taking the time to answer my questions and everyone on here is so lucky to have you to help out with questions and have a bless day.

          • Kay Derochie says:

            You are welcome, Polly.

          • Polly says:

            Hi Kay and I was looking at my letter I received about was reconsider for disability and was approved and it stated that I will not be able to work ever again and it was sign on July 23, 2015. I do receive SSA but was taken of off disability due to was told no longer disable but then was reconsider and approved. The letter stated that if anything changes I would receive another letter. My question is will I receive disability again and will I receive what was taken away since I do get SSA but was getting both before? Also is there a 5 month waiting period with been reconsider? Also will I receive back pay and if so when?
            And thank you for answering my questions and concerns.

          • Kay Derochie says:

            Dear Polly,

            All the disability benefits you were receiving should be reinstated back to the date that they were terminated. There should not be a five-month waiting period. I can’t say how long it will take to get benefits started again, but if you have not received benefits within a month of getting the reconsideration approval letter, take a copy of the letter to your Social Security office to follow up to be sure payment is being processed. (One note: Your Supplemental Security Income (SSI) could be paid in a different amount for the suspended period if you had countable income during that time.)

            Sincerely,
            Kay

      • Polly says:

        Hi Kay,
        I have a question I am getting SSA and was taken off disability in June 2014. I was reconsider and was approved and receive written letter in August OF 2015 saying I was still found to be disable. My question is that is SSA the same as disability? And the written letter I received said if this changes anything I would receive another letter and 12 weeks later no letter and would like to know will I receive more money since before this happen I was getting over 600.00 a month and now I receive 300.00 from SSA. I am so confused and do not understand this at all and thank you and have a good day.

        • Kay Derochie says:

          Dear Polly,

          The SSA is the Social Security Administration, which is the agency that administers Social Security Disability (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) disability claims.

          I suggest that you contact your local Social Security (SSA) office with a copy of the letter that you received saying your benefits were to be reinstated. Ask them to contact the payment center if the reinstatement is SSDI. If the reinstatement is SSI, ask what information they need from you to start payment. SSDI should be paid in the same amount as previously, plus the 2014 cost-of-living adjustment. SSI payment amounts are calculated monthly and depend on your income (including in-kind income in the form of free shelter or food) and can change in amount from month to month.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

      • Polly says:

        Hi and was approved for disability through reconsider through judge and has been 5 months and have not heard anything else and I have a payee can I check on this myself or does the payee reprsentive does this? Also receive letter or approved 5 months ago and still no money why? And I receive SSA & was receiving disability but was taken off but was found to be disable and it states that I cannot no longer work and wanted to know why I have not received any money or back pay and thank you for your help.

        • Kay Derochie says:

          Dear Polly,

          The first thing you need to clarify is whether you are eligible for two benefits or only one. If your Social Security Disability benefit is high enough you would not be eligible for ongoing Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits. After five months all benefits due should have been paid. Your payee has to check on the status of your claim, but perhaps you can listen to the call or go to the office with the payee, just to be sure that the money is not being paid out to the payee.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  28. Erica says:

    Hi, my question is- my son who is now 18 was born with dwarfism. He had to go through the adult redetermination process and was denied stating he was no longer considered disabled. I have since filed for an appeal. Since this is an ongoing disability that limits mobility and includes many other health impairments, why would he be denied as an adult? Or is this normal procedure when transitioning from child to adult disability?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Erica,

      The disability evaluation criteria and process are different for children and adults. You can read a little bit about it by reading the articles under the “Claim Process” tab on the navigation bar of this website and the article “What Medical Conditions Are Required to Meet SSI Disability Qualifications and to Get an SSI Approval?” under the SSI tab.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  29. Glenda says:

    Hi, I was born with Asthma and Scolosis (spelling) also I have Rhinitis and severe allergies. I got Chronic Bronchatis at 1 year old with the asthma. I appilied for my Fathers SS and then his VA benefits but was told I could get SSI and that my asthma could get better up to 49 years old. They said for to take the SSI till 50, I turned 50 this year and they have gave me a denial, they wanted records fromback when I was a child, They had the files all my medical records from back when I was 25 when I filed. So I am on the reconsideration phase and sent up dated records of the disability and how they have gotten worse and I have new disabilities as well. PTSD from a Doberman Dog attack when I was 5 years old and have anxiety panic disorder with PTSD. All things from before age 18. Can anyone tell me why I am having a hard Time getting my Fathers Benefits? He served our country 30 years in the Marines was a POW and shot 3 times, major wounds. But he did not leave his Service to The Marines. I waa getting his benefits till I married at 22, and then divorced, healthy ppl don’t understand sick ppl when you are young. I feel an injustice here especially when they threw out first I was not my Fathers Daughter wow that got me so upset. So We took care of that and now it’s turned down and now a reconsider in pending. I don’t know what I am doing I guess. I never have had legal help. Thanks Glenda,

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Glenda,

      I can not address your questions about VA dependent benefits. Disabled adult child Social Security benefits are paid on a parent’s earnings record because disability makes the adult child dependent on the parent even after the child is of age. When the disabled child gets married, that person is deemed dependent on the spouse, not the parent, if the person is disabled. For that reason your disabled adult child benefits stopped when you got married. I do not know whether closed claims from twenty-five years ago are kept by the Social Security Administration or, if they are, you can request that they be accessed for your current claim. Typically they are not. Therefore, I suggest that you contact your doctors and hospitals from back then to see whether the records can be found.

      Finally, if you feel you don’t know what you are doing, I suggest talking to a Social Security attorney about representing you. 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

      • Glenda says:

        Hi Kay! Thank You for Replying! I am going crazy with SS, now they see where I never collected my Fathers Benefits before I was married so it doesn’t apply since I didn’t, the reconsideration was stopped and they started me back to the beginning, IDK why but they did, I received 3 packets from The DDD department of disability determinations and they had me fax them back right away, she called me 4 days later and said she sent them to SS and I would get an answer within 2-4 weeks, but I was denied the day before she called even before SS received the DDD paper work of the disabilities. I was born with this never smoked and I have 3 inhalers I use everyday,I have a hard time breathing get outta breath easy and am 39 pounds over weight. So they admitted they should of paid me from back at 25 when I applied and I have been getting SSI right when I applied. This takes a lot out of me and I have no one behind me to tell me not to worry it will be ok and keep my panic anxiety ptsd depression down to a low key and my breathing has been so bad since the stress, sometimes I just want to give up and stay with ssi, but the medical is so bad now on staywell they barely pay for anything and they don’t pay for my family dr anymore. I really need the medicare. Thanks for your kindness and replying!! God Bless, Glenda

        • Kay Derochie says:

          Dear Glenda,

          You are welcome. I suggest that you investigate health insurance through the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) during the annual open enrollment period, which is in progress now through January 31. You can get more information at http://www.healthcare.gov.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  30. Maya says:

    Hi Marilyn,
    My sister received a notice very late because it went to my moms house which is her mailing address not her living address and my mom gave it to her late. She didn’t appeal in time and NOW may lose her benefits. What does she do if she loses her benefits? Initially they are claiming that she didn’t goto a Psyche apt that was scheduled but she did and they told her to her face that the Psyche was going to be out for the day and they signed the form.

    • Maya says:

      Sorry was looking at the comment below, this is addresses to KAY

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Maya,

      Your sister should go ahead and appeal even though she is out of her appeals period and ask that an exception be made because the mail was delayed in getting to her. It is a long shot, but it is worth a try. If she loses her benefits, she can reapply by filing a new claim; however, she may no longer be insured for Social Security Disability and have to file only for Supplemental Security Income. I suggest that she get a post office box so that she is sure to get her mail.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  31. marilyn says:

    hi kay
    requested reconsideration forgot to mention daughter condition had gotten worse lawyer requested otr claim had went to quality review its now been 60 days if all current medical info showing all doctor appts specialist and therapy have been completed is it a very good sign that her claim may be approved by condition getting worse since initial application stage thanks so much for your help

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Marilyn,

      Please see my response of a few minutes ago to your first post. I can’t predict how long the claim will be in quality assurance review. The fact that your daughter’s condition has worsened even though she has followed through on all recommended treatment could possibly help her claim.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  32. marilyn says:

    dear kay
    I had filed a reconsideration for my teenager daughter who have scoliosis and asthma went through appeal council her condition had gotten worse lawyer requested an otr is there a deadline to how long odar have to respond to request if all current medical records showing that she has completed her therapy thanks so much for any info

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Marilyn,

      From what you say, I can’t tell what level of appeal your daughter’s claim is at but I am guessing that the Aopeals Council reviewed and remanded the claim to the judge. If that is the case, then it is likely that the judge will respond to your attorney’s request either with an on-the-record decision or by setting a second hearing within three months. If that is not the situation, please clarify so I can respond related to the actual situation.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • marilyn says:

        Dear Kay
        Yes you are right the Appeal Council reviewed and remanded the claim back to the judge this would be my second hearing no lawyer at first hearing but had submitted new medical x ray which showed that her condition was worse than anticipated but wasn’t available at the time thought could handle everything boy I was wrong social security regulations are very complicated you need a experienced lawyer who specialize in this area to win your case thanks so much for the info will let you know what happens

        • Kay Derochie says:

          Thanks, Marilyn.

        • marilyn harper says:

          Dear Kay
          I had contacted you back in Sept 6, 2015 my case was remanded back to the judge this would be my second hearing. My daughter is 17years old has scoliosis and asthma my lawyer had to file a reconsideration because her condition had got worse. We had to request for a hearing on 09/22/2015. How long does it take to get an otr or a second hearing date? Its been almost five months haven’t heard a word thanks for your info

          • Kay Derochie says:

            Dear Marilyn,

            If a decision is made on the record (OTR), it would occur shortly before a hearing date.In other words, it wouldn’t shorten the waiting time by much. Waiting times vary from area to area, and I havn’t found statistics that break out second hearing wait times, but usually it is less than for a first hearing. I would think a date should be set within the next couple months.

            Sincerely,
            Kay

          • Hi Kay,
            I have wrote to you back in January 2016 regarding if lawyer request an off the record for decision for scoliosis and asthma. It has been over 6 1/2 months no decision yet but had received from social security a request for lawyer fee agreement to be signed and returned. If one was signed last year would this be a indication that a decision may be reached reached soon? Thanks so much for all you help and information

          • Kay Derochie says:

            Dear Marilyn,

            One signed attorney agreement is all that is needed. I think it is more likely that the first agreement was mislaid or not entered on your claim record in the computer. Just a note, the local office is notified of hearing decisions the same time you are not earlier.

            Sincerely,
            Kay

  33. JODY SWEATT says:

    I have been through all the stages of applying for Social Security. After my third denial I got an attorney to help me with my hearing. There are many things that I should have had done before my hearing that I was not aware of. On the day that the paperwork was a due my attorneys assistant called me and told me that I needed to go and have an assessment done. I asked her when it was it due and she said it should have been done by today. She had to ask for more time to be able to get the paperwork in. When I went to my doctor they told me she had fax the paperwork to them 2 months prior but no one ever told me that I needed to go in and have it done. When I went into my pcp to have him do the assessment there was a lot that he couldn’t do because he was not aware of my situation meaning he didn’t have proof of it. So I needed to get xrays. If I would have known to do this before my court date I could have gotten all the proof needed for my doctor to give the correct assessment and for the Social Security to make a better judgement. Needless to say I was denied. I also received a letter in the mail from my lawyer saying that he would not be representing me for an appeal. My question is what do I do now? I know that if they see my current problems in my neck and back with the degenerative disc disease and had updated records on it that it would have been better… So what are my options? My disability insurance date if December of 2015 so it is not expired yet. Any help would be great. Thank you so much!

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Jody,

      You can file a new claim and submit with it all the medical records that have been recently compiled. Your prior claim file will not be reviewed so take care to supply all your work history, your reasons for not being able to work in jobs you have held in the past or other occupations, and any medical records that were previously submitted as background. You must claim a date of disability later than the date you previously claime. (If the judge’s decision says that you have not provided proof up to the date of the decision, then the date needs to be after the decision letter.)

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  34. rene says:

    I applied for disability and was denied i hired an attorney and she asked for a reconsideration and then social security was to schedule a hearing. Well i have new diagnosis and i received a letter from them wanting updated medical history and they said they would review it and try to make a decision without going to hearing. Why would they do that?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Rene,

      The judge will review the records to see if a fully favorable decision can be made without a hearing. There is no need for a hearing if the new information supports you became disabled on the date you claimed and that you continue to be disabled. If a fully favorable decision on the record cannot be made, you will get your hearing.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • RON says:

        HELLO KAY, I AM IN THE RECON STAGE AND MY DISABILITY EXAMINER HAS REQUESTED RECORDS FROM THE PAIN MGT DR I AM CURRENTLY SEEING. HE SENT A REQUEST ALSO FOR A LETTER DETAILING FOR THE DOCTOR TO EXPLAIN DIAG-PROG-OPPINION FOR MY CONDITION. DR STATES IN 2 PAGE REPORT THAT I HAVE FAILED BACK SYN ACHILLES REFLUX DECREASED DERMATONES L4/L5/S1 CHRONIC RADICULAR PAIN. TRIED AND FAILED ALL TREATMENT.HE STATES THAT I HAVE POOR FUNCTIONAL ABILITES, NEXT WOULD BE NEURO STIM TRIAL. IF HE SUPPLIES THE DE WITH ALL OF THE INFO HE WANTED VALIDATED WOULD THAT MEAN HE WOULD HAVE CONTROLLING WEIGHT AND HAVE POSSIBLE FAVORABLE OUTCOME

        • Kay Derochie says:

          Dear Ron,

          All information and evidence will be considered including your doctor’s statement. A strong supporting statement from your physician, especially if the physician explains the basis for his conclusions, will certainly help your claim; however, it does not guarantee approval.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

          • RON says:

            HELLO KAY THE DISABILITY EXAMINER SAID HE RECIEVED ALL MY REQUESTED RECORDS AND A DETAILED STATEMENT FROM MY PAIN MGT WHICH CONFIRMS MY COMPLAINTS ARE DOCUMENTED AND STATES I WILL NOT REUTRN TO WORK AND HAVE POOR FUNCTIONAL ABILITIES, HE IS PASSING MY FILE TO THE MEDICAL UNIT. WHAT IS THIS AND HOW LONG DOES THIS PROCESS USUALLY TAKE

          • Kay Derochie says:

            Dear Ron,

            It sounds as if the claims examiner has recommended a decision on your claim and has forwarded it to a staff physician to review the claim and the recommendation.

            Sincerely,
            Kay

  35. thomas says:

    i am a 100% disabled vet. and filed foe ssid in 2002 which was denied then citizens disibility took over my case it then went to fed court with a attorney they hired and at fed. court it is now sent back for reconsideration but now with new medical evidence left out the first time such as compression break in lower back and fused vertibre in neck ,should i fill another claim or wait to see results of this recon. the lady at the ss office said i should fie again but she’s not an attorney my new case is suppose to come up maybe in october and possibly back pay back to org. filling in 2002 why would ss office tell me to file again when i currently have a ongoing recon. from the fed. level eny of your opinion would help thanks

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Thomas,

      I recommend that you get legal advice on whether to file a new claim while you have a federally remanded appeal pending, and, if you do, what disability date you can/should claim. Note that if you haven’t worked since 2002, you are no longer insured for Social Security Disability, so winning the appeal would be doubly advantageous.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  36. jerry ford says:

    My brother is 50 years old and he has been a truck driver for 20 years. he never finished high school. He got in a bad accident in one of the trucks in 2012 june. He had neck surgery, they put a pain pump in him in 2014. he has a lot of back problems and he needs another surgery on his neck. He walks bent over because he is in so much pain. He is on workmans comp and state disability. He filed for social security disabilty and the first time was turn down. Well he just got approved on the appeal. My question is he got approved but they are saying his disability in there mind started Feb.2015. Which means they do not want to pay him any back pay. He has a attorney but can they file a appeal that he was disable since 2012.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Jerry,

      Your brother can appeal the established date of disability. I suggest that he discuss the idea of an appeal with his attorney to see what advice the attorney has about this.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  37. Sharon says:

    Hi Kay
    I have 2 questions listed below

    Reconsideration for ssdi are they ever won with an attorney in the state of IL?

    I got a denial letter for ssdi my condition has gotten worse
    major depressive disorder another medication was added and i take sleep meds to help me sleep at night and my memory is not good at all now i have to leave meds out with a note to remember to take them and what they are for
    with this new information do you know if i would be approved or denied?

    Thank you

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Sharon,

      Yes, benefits are sometimes awarded at the reconsideration level. I suggest that you request a copy of your claim file so that you can see the exact reasons for the denial. A reconsideration with new information has a better chance for approval than a reconsideration request that just says you disagree.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Sharon says:

        The letter I received states I have some restrictions but I can still do medium work,My attorney is filing a reconsideration with updated information from my Dr.regarding new medication and I still have back pain that I am now going physical therapy for……When new information is added is that a better chance of being approved at the reconsideration stage?

        • Kay Derochie says:

          Dear Sharon,

          Yes, new information can be helpful to an appeal.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

          • Sharon says:

            Hi Kay
            your answer stated helpful with an appeal is that the same with reonsiderations? or are they the same?

            thank you

          • Kay Derochie says:

            Dear Sharon,

            An appeal is a request to have claim facts reviewed again to arrive at a different, favorable decision. There are three appeal levels within the Social Security administrative appeals process: reconsideration, hearing, and Appeals Council review. If a person is denied throughout all three levels of appeal, he or she can file an appeal in federal district court.

            Sincerely,
            Kay

          • Sharon says:

            Kay
            Thank you so much for helping me understand the process of this
            and this informational website

          • Kay Derochie says:

            You are welcome, Sharon.

  38. Megan says:

    When my husband’s claim was denied, he decided to get a lawyer that specializes in MS to file his appeal. He just got a letter from the judge stating that his appeal request was about 2 weeks late from the deadline. He was told by the lawyers that he just needed to wait to hear from them when the hearing date will be set. Do judges accept late appeals when the lawyer filed the paperwork late?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Megan,

      I suggest that your husband discuss his options with his attorney. Your husband might be able to file a formal request to have the late appeal accepted saying that he had no way of knowing that the attorney was missing the filing date until he received the judge’s letter, so he could not have known that he needed to step in and file it himself.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  39. Jill says:

    I need advice on how long a request for reconsideration can take. We filed my request on November 15 and still haven’t heard anything. They did have to request additional medical records, which I imagine is adding to the delay. However, is 7 months a long time to make a decision for a request for reconsideration? Everything I’ve read online says it only takes about 2-3 months. Is the longer wait a positive sign? Thank you for your help!

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Jill,

      I suggest that you call the Disability Determination Services (DDS) and ask the claims examiner whether he or she is waiting for anything from you or your medical providers. If not, ask her what is needed for DDS to complete the reconsideration review and how long it will be. Politely point out that it has been seven months since you appealed. If you don’t have a decision in a month, call back and ask to speak to a supervisor.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  40. SOAR Case Mgr says:

    I am a non-atty rep who files SSDI/SSI claims for homeless, whom are severe mentally ill. During an initial stage, our client scored low on the SLUMS. Because he often cannot even remember his case mgr’s name (4 letters) and other cognitive issues, I submitted the low test score document to DDS and requested that they order Weschler and Trails A & B, cognitive/neuro testing. If I’ve provided “proof”, they’ve always ordered it in the past, and that dr usually nailed my claim for me.

    Today, however, I received a call from the DDS Director who said it was inappropriate for me to request such testing. ?? I had been taught by 3 former DDS mgr’s that if I submitted proof of a cognitive problem, they had to order and pay for the testing. Otherwise, it is their neglect in obtaining ALL of the info before making a decision. Is there something new I don’t know about? It’s June 2015.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear SOAR Case Mgr.,

      I apologize for the length of time it has taken me to respond. I had to do a bit of research.

      My understanding is that it is within the discretion of the SSA Regional Office via DDS to order any consultative examination or test if it will add to the full development of a claim. But, if one is not ordered, then the only recourse is to make an on-the-record motion to an Administrative Law Judge to order said test. But, it is up to the discretion of the judge. If a test is not ordered, then one can always argue a reversible error to the Appeals Council. When the claim is not yet at the hearing level, all you can do is make the written request–whether they think it is appropriate or not–and at least go on record as having done so.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  41. Alice says:

    I really need advise is there a advisor online?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Alice,

      Communication on this site is conducted through this forum, which is not “real” time.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Alice says:

        Hello Kay, my son has been diagnoised with adhd , my son was denied so I am appealing it the social security case worker sent me a reconsideration form to appeal it, they had denied him in less than 2months. What are chances of my son getting approved through a reconsideration appeal?

        • Alice says:

          His only 4years old going on 5 this month, what should we expect from a recondideration appeal, his syciatrist had to up his dose 3times already it doesn’t seem to help him. He also takes medicine to sleep his syciatrist prescribed him.

        • Kay Derochie says:

          Dear Alice,

          Your appeal has a better chance of approval if you have new information or evidence to submit and/or if you have a knowledgeable Social Security attorney focus the appeal on essential points. You can reach a good Social Security attorney by completing the online form on this page to request a free Benefits Evaluation from Disability Advisor. 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 at the time they send your back pay to you. So, it’s all very easy and risk-free.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  42. Anna Tuccillo says:

    I was diagnosed with bipolar and others along with serve anxiety. I have been on disability since 2002 and diagnosed with bi polar at the age of 20. I have lost plenty of jobs due to my bipolar illness and have been in the hospitals. I work part time and just recently went over my Gainful Amount that I can make according to disability in 2013 and 2014. The Social Security administration stopped my benefits and I called up Social Security in my town for help, they decided that I start a new application over again and it would not take that long. But I was not taking medication at the end of 2014, I stopped because the last doctor I saw was trying to make me take medication that I did not feel was working for me, I felt sick, headaches, stomach issues, making me slur and all. I have been on almost all meds through my life. He then said there is nothing I can do for you and let me go, I told him but don’t I need the medication? I then left and found a therapist after that I have been seeing her. Bipolar symptoms never disappear. I am in the process of renewing benefits.. .Will they see that I was not taking medication and deny me. I also was in the hospital in 2012. I am in the process of calling up a psychiatrist to go back on meds for anxiety and bi polar meds as of tomorrow. I have been trying natural medication to help. The new application was filled out last week. I really need to be put on medication all symptoms are recurring. Maybe there are some new medication that will agree with me. Will they deny my benefits because of that? Hope this makes sense, scared and depressed.

    Thanks

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Anna,

      It sounds as if more than thirty-six months has passed since you completed your nine-month Trial Work Period and that your benefit were terminated in the first month after that that you performed substantial gainful activity (SGA.) If that is the case you are eligible to apply for Expedited Reinstatement, which is a faster process than a regular new claim. If Expedited Reinstatement was not mentioned to you, contact your local office and ask that your claim be flagged for that.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Anna Tuccillo says:

        If I do sign up for Expedited Reinstatement, would I be getting my full amount that I have been receiving from Social Security or will it be less then that? Would it not be better to open up a new claim? IF I do open up a new claim how long will that take (s/s told me around four months) and what are my consequences?

        Also thanks for your replies.

        Anna

        • Kay Derochie says:

          Dear Anna,

          You will receive the same amount as you were receiving previously if you use the Expedited Reinstatement.

          Opening a new claim might give you a new trial work period, though I am not sure about that because either way–Expedited Reinstatement or a new claim within five years of the closure of the old claim–there is no five-month unpaid waiting period.

          On an average a new claim takes longer than a review for Expedited Reinstatement. It might be helpful to discuss the options with your Social Security claims representative.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

      • Pam says:

        I filed for social security disability reconsideration 6 10 15 along with my appeal I sent in medical evidence which included mri,xray,copd test results a letter from my dr with all my diagnoses and treatments he stated i could not work at this time1 week later they sent me a authorization to disclose information form I filled it out and mailed it back in then today they called went over my limitations and ask if anything got worst since April I told her yes have severe copd and neuropathy which was in the recent medical records I just had done she kept referring to April I said one test was done in may one in June so yes things have got worst she then proceeded and at the end of the call,she said they would send for medical records from such and such places which is the places where I had went recent so my question is why would they have to send for that when I already sent it in and she said she got it I will be 50 in 12 days i,hope my age will,help,also thanks in,advance for all your help

        • Pam says:

          Also she asked if there was anything that has changed since April I kept saying yes I sent in the medical evidence she kept saying yes I got those but has anything changed since april (which is when my case was denied)so why is she referring back to that when I sent in evidence and also she asked about the facilities I have been so she could send for the record I forgot to tell them about the hospital where I had all my kidney surgeries starting in 2008 so I guess I’m asking why does she have to send for records when I sent them in and also should I call them and add the other hospital and next question I will be 50 in 10 days is that close enough for the to put me in the 50-54 age bracket thanks so much for all advice

          • Kay Derochie says:

            Dear Pam,

            Please see my previous response. Yes, do submit the information about the hospital you forgot to mention and provide the month and year of the surgeries and type of surgeries if possible.

            Sincerely,
            Kay

        • Kay Derochie says:

          Dear Pam,

          The disability claims examiner may need to be see all the records and not just the ones you selected. Given the questions about dates, the examiner may be trying to determine whether you became disabled when you claimed or at some later date.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  43. Lori Howard says:

    I received my SSD denial and requested a reconsideration, I basically questioned their decision and threw it back at them because it was a contradiction of words, they claim I am disabled ( spinal and cervical bi lateral stenosis with nerve root compression) but my age and education determined I could do ” light work”
    My response was: I cannot use my education ( Healthcare) for other light work because it is specific to one field. My doctor the only one I could afford in my area ( he was referred by hospital) was absolutely awful and didn’t take notes or listen to me he was also unethical charging me to come into office to fill out disability paper had he taken notes he wouldn’t have needed me there although he probably would have still charged me. I also told disability due to my lack of not being able to work for the last year I couldn’t afford specialist and such.
    I got a letter today from the reconsideration examiner requesting I go to see their doctor, not a problem but my question is do these appointments help or hinder these decisions I realize SSD says they don’t approve or deny based on the docs decision although I find that hard to believe. Thanks so much

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Lori,

      You were denied previously because you were determined to have transferable skills to do other types of work. The current consultative examination report will be considered together with the other information in your claim file when a decision is made. Because your own doctor’s records and reports were apparently weak as related to your claim, the upcoming examination will be an important piece of evidence.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  44. shareca says:

    WOULD YOU KNOW HOW LONG IT’S GOING TO TAKE FOR THEM TO MAKE A DECISION?

  45. shareca says:

    THANKS! WELL SAID….

  46. shareca says:

    HELLO!
    MY CHILD RECEIVE SSD UNDER THE FATHERS DISABILITY. I RECEIVED A LETTER OF A OVERPAYMENT AND THEY STOPPED HER PAYMENTS WITHOUT A 30 DAY NOICE. I APPEALED IT BUT IS CORRECTLY WAITING ON THE PAPER WORK IN THE MAIL. THE LETTER DONT STATE WHY AND HOW SHE WAS OVER PAID. MY QUESTION IS CAN THEY JUST STOP HER PAYMENTS WITHOUT A 30 DAY NOICE AND I APPEALED IT? IT HAS TO BE A MISTAKE ON THE SSA WITH THE CALCULATIONS. I DONT KNOW WHAT TO DO.

    • shareca says:

      WHILE THE APPEAL IS IN PROCESS WILL THEY GIVE BACK HER PAYMENTS OR MAYBE I WILL RECEIVE SOME TAPE OF PAYMENT LATER IN THIS MONTH? BUT FOR WHAT THERE TELLING ME IS SHE NOT GOING TO RECEIVE A PAYMENT FOR MAY. AND I RECEIVED THE LETTER ON THE 20TH OF THIS MONTH.

      • Kay Derochie says:

        Dear Shareca,

        Please see my response to your first posting. If you are having trouble understanding the correspondence you are getting, you can take it to your Social Security office and ask for an explanation of the letters and an answer to your questions about future benefits.

        Sincerely,
        Kay

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Shareca,

      The first thing to do is to find out why your daughter is overpaid. You have to know why in order to know if you disagree with the recalculation (assuming the overpayment has to due with calculations) and, therefore, disagree with the fact of the overpayment. If you find that you do not disagree with the fact of the overpayment, you can request waiver of collection of the overpayment based on the overpayment not being your fault and your not being able to afford to repay. If future benefits are being withheld to collect the overpayment, another option is to request partial monthly withholding.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • shareca says:

        THANK YOU. I DID VISIT A OFFICE TODAY AND THEY SAID THATS ITS NOT POSTED IN THE COMPUTERS ON WHY AND HOW SHE WAS OVER PAID. BUT THEY GAVE ME A OVERPAYMENT WAIVER TODAY AND I SENT IT OFF WITH PROOF OF MY INCOME AN EXPENSES. BUT I ALREADY HAD PUT IN FOR A APPEAL. WHICH SHE BE INTHE MAIL IN A FEW DAYS. IT JUST DOESN’T MAKE SENSE FOR THEM TO STOP PAYMENTS WITHOUT 30DAYS. BUT I WAS TOLD THAT I WILL RECEIVE HER BENEFIT PROLLY A LIL LATE SINCE I PUT IN FOR A APPEAL PLUS WAIVER TODAY.

        • Kay Derochie says:

          Dear Shareca,

          The government has no obligation to pay benefits that are not due so a “thirty-day notice” is not required. The local office can request an explanation of the calculation of the overpayment from the payment center.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

          • shareca says:

            THANKS ALOT FOR YOUR HELP AND MAKING IT EASY FOR ME TO UNDERSTAND. IS A APPEAL THE SAME AS A WAIVER BECAUSE I HAVENT RECEIVED ANYTHING IN THE MAIL TO SIGN FOR THE APPEAL. ONLY A WAIVER FOR OVERPAYMENT

          • Kay Derochie says:

            Dear Shareca,

            An appeal is saying that you are not overpaid or the amount of the overpayment is wrong. An appeal asks the Social Security to correct the mistake so that there is a smaller overpayment or no overpayment. A request for waiver does not disagree with the overpayment; it just asks that you not have to repay the overpaid money.

            Sincerely,
            Kay

  47. Lisa says:

    I first applied for disability in April of 2013 for chronic obstructed kidney, pulmonary embolism, hematoma, and liver mass. I was initially denied the first time. I appealed for the reconsideration and went to their doctor in which he said he didn’t have enough vocational information about my past jobs. I was denied September 2014. I appealed that decision and was granted a hearing on April 2 and I called today and they said that it was denied because of my initial application. Since I first applied I have been diagnosed with lupus, chronic anemia, fibromyalgie, arthritis, vitamin B deficiency by a rheumatologist. Also my right kidney is gone. I haven’t received the letter yet but I’m wondering should I file a new applications with the new diagnosis. I was diagnosed recently with carpal tunnel by an orthropedic. The Vocational Expert said I couldn’t do my previous jobs and their were no jobs in the nation that I can do and I was still denied. Help please

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Lisa,

      It is very unusual that you would be given notice of denial over the phone, especially with a reason given. I suggest that you wait for the letter to see the exact reasons for the denial. At that time, you can consult with a Social Security attorney to get advice on whether to file an Appeals Council review or a new claim and how to formulate the appeal if you decide to go that route. Either way, I recommend that you request a copy of your claim file to help you prepare the appeal or the new claim. If you file a new claim, be sure to list all your illnesses including those for which you originally applied and get an attorney for the the first appeal if you are denied.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  48. Mrs. Jackson says:

    I was denied SSI. FOR MY 9 YEAR OLD DAUGHTER. SHE HAS ADHD AND MOOD DISORDERS. SHE WAS DENIED BECUZ DDS DIDNT HAVE ENOUGH MEDICAL INFORMATION. SHE WAS ON A WAITING LIST TO SEE THE CHILD PSYCHOLOGIST IN OUR AREA. SHE STARTED SEEING THE DOCTOR IN MARCH WHEN HER TIME CAME UP. SHE IS NOW ON MEDS AND SEEING THE DOCTOR ON A REGULAR BASE. MEDS ARE CONSTANTLY CHANGING AND MORE AND MORE REFERRALS FROM SCHOOL AND FREQUENT CALLS FROM TEACHER. I APPEALLED TODAY. WILL DDS CONSIDER MY NEW INFORMATION NOW

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Mrs. Jackson,

      The DDS will consider all documentation that you submitted. If your daughter is approved, approval and benefits may begin on the date of original application or on the date that she has medical records sufficient to prove disability,

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  49. Januice says:

    Hello,

    My mother was denied SSDI twice. Today she received a letter that stated she meets approval for benefits, but no money. How is this? Could this be due to my father’s income? If so his income is depleted due to the amount of bills they have from my mother’s medical conditions. Is there anything else we can do? Can she appeal if she’s been approved, but denied at the same time? Please help!

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Januice,

      If your mother actually applied for SSDI (Social Security Disability) as you say and not SSI (Supplemental Security Income), your father’s income will not affect her benefits. When you say “no money,” do you mean that the letter says she is not eligible for benefits or just that the letter doesn’t mention money? A medical approval letter from the judge after a hearing does not include any information about payment amounts. The medically approved claim goes to the payment center for benefit calculation and release of payment.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  50. Gail LaBella says:

    I applied for SSI and SSDI after I fell from 3rd story roof shattering both ankles and breaking my back in several places. I’ve had numerous surgeries and now in a wheelchair for life. I was approved for the SSI without any problems but denied SSDI because I haven’t worked for at least 5 of the past 10 years. I’ve worked most of my life (I’m 51) except for the past 8 years because I got married and was a housewife. I got divorced shortly before my accident and was in the process of getting my business started again. I’m now single again , no children or family, just me. There is no way I can survive on SSI alone. Since I don’t meet that one eligibility requirement is there any way I can still get SSDI? There is no question I’m disabled, got approved for SSI and Medicaid with no problem. SSA says I can start receiving benefits when I reach retirement age but that doesn’t help me now. I was only married for 8 years so I can’t use my exhusbands employment, you must be married at least 10 years. I’ve lost my car, my home, everything and now I’m homeless because I can’t survive on $480 a month from SSI. Ive been staying with friends here and there but at some point I’m going to wear out my welcome. Any advice you can provide would be greatly appreciated!

    Thank you,

    Gail

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Gail,

      You cannot receive Social Security Disability without being insured (without having enough work credits) on the date you became disabled. If you have not yet received your SSI back pay, you can use that money to rent yourself a small apartment or a room with kitchen privileges that you can afford to pay ongoing with $733 income. and thus begin to qualify for the maximum SSI of $733 a month beginning the second month after you start to pay your own shelter expenses.

      Usually back pay is paid in installments six months apart with the first installment being $2,199; however, if you need more than that amount to pay first and last months rent and rental and utility deposits and to get minimal furniture and basic cooking and bedding furnishing, you can make a written request to have more released (assuming you are eligible for more.)

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  51. Jill says:

    Hi, Kay. I asked you another question earlier and I apologize for the repeat question. I have bipolar 1 disorder with rapid cycling and/or mixed episodes, general anxiety disorder, seasonal affective disorder, social phobia, and arthritis in my hip and knees. I’ve recently been diagnosed with obsessive/compulsive disorder as well. My file is currently in the request for reconsideration phase and I’m working with an attorney. The SSA informed me that they requested additional records and received them on Februrary 12. I’m not sure what evidence has been submitted because I’m getting conflicting statements from my doctor and my attorney. Is there any way I can request the records from SSA to see exactly what has been submitted? Or do I have to work with my lawyer to do that? My doctor has not been very cooperative, although I do see her regularly because of medication adjustments. How would I go about getting the submitted medical records from her? I don’t want to make waves, but I really would like to see what she’s submitted. They act live everything’s a big secret, even though they are MY records and I’m paying a fortune in doctor’s bills.

    I was forced to retire from a $67,000 annual job and I sure didn’t do it for the fun of it. I just couldn’t work any more. So here I am on a very reduced income. What else can I do to win my request for reconsideration?

    Thank you.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Jill,

      Talk to your attorney about the fact that you are uncertain that your doctor has actually sent the records to Social Security. He or she can request a list of the records received and the dates covered by those records.

      As far as getting the records, you would probably have to sign a release and pay for them. Another way to get them is to have your attorney request a copy of your claim file to date. If your reconsideration is denied, you can request it yourself because you will not be represented until the request for hearing is filed.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  52. gabriel says:

    Im filing for ssi for adhd depression anxiety. I have a long history of this all throughout my life . I was on ssdi as a child for being born with only one ear . The rules where changed long ago and i lost my ssdi at age 11 .. but what im here to ask is my current lawyer has taken my case but wants me to file on my own first its allmost like he is hopefull i get denied. So he can win on appeal. … why ? Is he trying to make the file to award time longer for a bigger lump sum

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Gabriel,

      Many attorneys will help only after a denial. They are paid as a percentage of the back pay and if there is little or no back pay because of the unpaid five-month waiting period for Social Security Disability(SSDI) or only a few months of the relatively low SSI monthly benefit, they do not get adequately paid for their time.

      You can get a lot of information about filing a claim in the articles under the “Apply SSD” tab at the top of each page of this Disability Advisor website. There is also helpful information under the “Claims Process” tab on how claims are evaluated, which could help you form your arguments.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  53. Fermen Lesdesma says:

    If i have been fighting disabilty for 5 yrs and just got denied by law judge and it says my disabilty onset date is going to expire dec 30,2014 can i still file appeal.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Fermen,

      Yes, you can appeal. If you are able to prove that your disability onset date was before December 31, 2014, you will be eligible for benefits.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  54. Beverly Calvo says:

    Sadly, I cannot find a lawyer to help me because I do not take meds for my psychiatric diagnosis. They make me suicidal, aggressive and lethargic. This doesn’t seem to matter. And 3 disability lawyers told me they will not help if I am not on meds. I anticipate having to go on to a hearing. Any suggestions on how I can prove my claim without a lawyer assisting me? Any laws out there supporting/defending my right to not take meds without being labeled as non-compliant? Seems to me I have the right not to ingest anything that will cause me more harm.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Beverly,

      See my reply to your prior question. With regard the not taking medication, if you have had a bad response to the medications in the past, your medical records may document the problems and the reasons for not taking the meds. You could present those records to support you claim. If you have not done so already, I suggest that you discuss your claim with Disability Advisor. You do not have to pay any legal fees up front and you will pay attorney fees only if a Disability Advisor attorney accepts your case and 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 at the time it sends your back pay to you. So, it’s all very easy and risk-free.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  55. rRIGOT JOSEPH says:

    I am just received my denial letter stated that my medical evidence above ;HIGHT BLOOD PRESSURE , HIGH CHOLESTEROL, DIABETTE 2, PINCHED NERVE, LOWER BACK AND KIDNEY DISEASE SHOW SOME LIMITATATIONS TO YOUR ABILTILY TO PERFORM WORK RELATED ACTIVITIES, HOWEVER, THESE LIMITATIONS DO NOT PREVENT YOU FROM PERFORMING WORK YOU HAVE DONE IN THE PAST. I CALLED MY LAWYER, HE TOLD ME HE WOULD FILL FOR APPEAL. I DON’T KNOW IF I HAVE TO CALL SSA MYSELFLEF , LET THEM KNOW ABOUT MY PAST TREATMENT FROM MY PRIMARY DOCTOR WHICH WAS NOT MENTION ON MY DDS AND MY PRESENT TREATMENT ALSO. I AM CONFUSED I DON’T KNOW WHAT I SHOULD I DO. I DO TRUST MY LAWYER . BUT BY READING YOUR COMMENTS AND YOUR ADVICES. I NEED A SECOND OPINION ABOUT MY SITUATION. THE TWO DOCTORS THEY STATED IN MY DDS REPORT WAS NOT MY PRIMARY DOCTOR WHO WERE TREATING ME..

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Joseph,

      I suggest that you talk with your attorney about everything you think was wrong about the decision so the attorney can address those issues when he files the appeal.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  56. K Craig says:

    I am 22 years old and applied for SSDI Child Benefits (for myself under my fathers earnings record) for severe generalized anxiety disorder, panic disorder and social anxiety that started when I was 18 and keeps me in my house, has prevented me from driving and thus getting a drivers license, and causing me to have serious problems concentrating on anything or dealing with stress. Even being homebound I am eaten alive every day by anxiety even though I am on medication and go to a psychiatrist. I received mail today stating my claim was denied, because although my condition is “severe” it is not “severe enough”. My Adult Disability Form was never received by them even though I properly lined up the address on the envelope and mailed it out the morning after I received it… I am assuming it was lost in the mail somehow. I have some speculation that this is part of why I got denied and I am going to attempt to find a lawyer and start the first part of the appeal process tomorrow since today is Veterans Day. They only listed 3 sources of information and two were psychiatrists that I did not see for very long and one was a report from a family member. Do you think the Adult Disability Report has any real weight in the determination process? If so I hope I get a chance to either fill another one out during the appeal process or provide that additional information in some other way. I’m unemployed and home bound and my insurance runs out when I turn 26, so I feel like I am doomed.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear K.,

      It is your responsibility to submit another Adult Disability Report form with your appeal. If you kept a photocopy, then make a copy of it to attach to your appeal. If you don’t have a copy, get another from from Social Security and complete it thoroughly. It is important because it is your statement of why you can’t work. If you are denied again, request a hearing and obtain a Social Security attorney who can file a formal appeal of your claim denial. 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

  57. Beverly Vest says:

    I applied for disability in March of 2014, but been unable to work because of health problems since 2011. I just hated the idea of being considered disable so I waited in hopes my health would improve. Long story short it never has, actually it’s progressed. I applied was denied, applied for reconsideration was denied again.
    The denial stated” the medical evidence shows you do have the above conditions,(Fibromyaliga, Brain Damage, COPD, Blood disorder, Possible MS, Chronic Back problems, Chronic headaches, Third Stage Kidney disease, High blood pressure and High cholesterol) These are the conditions. Then it states ” you maintain the ability to perform some work like activities.” The evidence does not show any other condition which would significantly limit your ability to work. Additionally, any symptoms, such as pain, were considered in this claim. We do not have sufficient vocational information to determine whether you can perform any of your past relevant work. However, based on the evidence in file, we have determined that you can adjust to other work. However, it does not prevent doing lighter work. Based on your age (048 years and 08 months) education (12th grade), and past work experience. we have determined that your overall medical condition allows the performance of other work. At the top it stated ( We did not obtain any other evidence because we have enough information to fully evaluate this claim. This whole thing counterdicts itself. Any insight why I was denied after reconsideration with these medical problems?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Beverly,

      The letter does seem somewhat self-contradictory. In general, I can tell you that ordinarily the first factor that is evaluated is whether you can do past past. If you cannot, then you are evaluated to determine whether there is other work you can do. Individuals under age fifty must be unable to perform new occupations. The letter is essentially saying that they skipped the first evaluation because they were missing some vocational information about your past occupation(s), but it didn’t matter because you didn’t meet the second test.

      If you disagree with the decision, I recommend getting legal assistance from an attorney who is well versed in Social Security Disability law because disability based on multiple conditions is complicated and sometimes difficult to prove. 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

  58. G scott says:

    My husband has been diagnosed with PTSD steaming from a brutal attack he received back in 2007. He abstained some physical injures as well an had to have surgeries to somewhat fix that problem but mentally has never been the same an was diagnosed with PTSD. He applied for disability in 2007 an has been denied every year since. He has had the same lawyer an just recently in feb.of 2014 won his case in fed court to have another hearing, she said this might take up to another year. He has not worked since 2007. Being denied so many times what is the likely hood of ever being approved? An do they not consider PTSD as a disability? If approved how far back will he be paid? Thank you.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Ms. Scott,

      As long as the appeal is alive, there is a possibility that your husband’s claim will be approved. PTSD can be disabling depending on how severe it is. If he is approved and the current appeal is based on the 2007 application, benefits could go back to 2007.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  59. Kelly says:

    I am 42 until the 25th of this month, and have a few medical issues that keep me from doing gainful work. I started my case in early 2011 which carried on until I had my hearing in may of 2013. I received a decision in sept of 2013 (unfavorable) and appealed it. I had an attourney I believed to be doing their job in collecting my medical records. I was mistaken. I have suffered with pulmonary disease since birth. I was put under sun lamps to break up the stuff in my chest to help me breathe. I was also born with they named retroversion of the right hipbone, for which I wore braces on my legs. It was said that I would outgrow this abnormality I never did. At age 6 I tried for the first time to commit suicide. I suffered depression as long as I can remember, I also have violent black outs. I started having severe neck and shoulder pains at age 20 and was diagnosed with degenerative disease. I filed a case with workmans comp in 2005 I believe due to reinjury of an old injury from a wreck in 2001, which made my neck and shoulder worse. I ended up with buldging disc in my cervical spine, and radiating pains in my arms and legs. I was told then by the dr I was seeing that never again would I be able to do repetitive work with my upper extremeties again. Since then I have gotten to be in a worse state. my knees hurt all the time wether I walk sit stand. In march 2013 I was diagnosed with C.O.P.D, and sleep apnea. When I went to my hearing in may 2013 My attourney had none of my records that verified my statements although I gave him numbers, address’s, hospitals, and names. So of course with nothing backing me hardly it wasn’t helpful. The judge and some vocational something or other worker decided that there was one job I could do, ( Tag inserter) which is repetitive work with my upper extremeties. I filed an appeal and should hear back this month or next. I don’t know what is going to happen and I’m scared. I have a spot on my right lung, my knees are giving out, my head, neck and shoulders hurt daily, I can’t be in the heat to long because of my lungs, I pee in my pants all the time due to coughing. I need medical treatment and can’t get it… It’s taken me over an hour to type this because I can’t stay in one position too long. I am only 43 this month!!!!!!!!!!! My father was diagnosed with agent orange and I beleive my sisters and I inherited some of the effects from it. My attourney did tell me I needed to continue to get my condition documented, but please tell me how I am to do this with no car, no money for visits, much less prescriptions….. What can I do???

    • Kelly says:

      I forgot My first two denials were due to age and education, what good is that if I am falling apart, and when I am in severe pain good luck getting intelligents from me. I have been diagnosed as bipolar as well as all my other issues, I have what feels like ants crawling all over me and biting me at times. I believe auto immune disease or neuropothy, fybromyalgia, I do know I am tired of being in pain and its no wonder suicidal thoughts roam my pain racked brain. Stroke type blood pressure too. :) Its a wonderful life. Sorry

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Kelly,

      I am responding to your three posts.

      If your appeal is denied, you can file a new application, claiming a date of disability after the date of the hearing denial letter. On the new application, you could list all your medical providers, their contact information, approximately range of when you saw them, the diagnoses you got from each and the treatment you got from each, and how the treatment did or didn’t help. You could make a statement that you don’t have the funds to obtain the medical records yourself and ask Social Security to obtain the records for your claim. (They may or may not get them all.) With regard to current care, you might check by telephone with your local social services off to find out whether there is a free clinic in your area. Free medications can sometimes be obtained from pharmaceutical companies; check the website http://www.needymeds.com. Lastly, you can call the Appeals Council office to find out whether they received the appeal and your letter.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  60. angela says:

    I am so confused with the reconsideration process in Tenn. I have clearly met impairment listing and all needed qualifications according to my attorney. Is there anything I can do to make sure my medical records are viewed correctly and get the correct decision. My case was assigned a caseworker a week ago. I just cannot understand what is taking so long

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Angela,

      I suggest that you talk with your attorney and ask if there is anything you can add to the information given for your appeal.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  61. Gerald says:

    Okay. I have been denied back in april. I file for a reconsideration review. I was referred by doctor to a clinical treatment center for my mental illness. I diagnose with psychic disorders. And now i take medicine call tramzone, respridone, and paxil.now i seen their examiner. She diagnose me with just depression. She never said i need to see a counsel for futher treatment. But i have been getting my own paperwork together. And i also just had two surgery. I reasonly just had plates and srews remove out of my legs. But he couldn’t remove the main srew that’s in my joint. I have been incarcerated all my life in out the system.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Gerald,

      Submit everything you have gathered as soon as possible so it can be considered in the reconsideration review. If you have limitations due to the your leg or legs, be sure to mention those as well.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  62. Martin E. Washington says:

    I’ve been waiting for the Socoal Security Benefit’s for nearly three year’s now. I’ve just been denied for the Request for review. My autttory for the case field a very good case for the brief. The first wrong thing The Administrative Law Jaw did was he appeared to have abused theri discretion in the original deciision what happened is that the Judge threw out all of the medical evidence of the case which stated that I could only work five hour’s a day. Instead the Administrative Judge who is not a doctor came up with his own solutions stating that I could work three two- hour’s a day shift knowningf that I’m 53 year’s old that know one would hear me at that age. The Administrative Law Jaw decision was not supported by any substantial evidence in this case! The next issue was the vocational expert at the very end of the trial stated that I could be only qualified by a cashier in which I’ve haven’t still worked for today. When I went to the Appeal Council for review the Administrative Law Jaw brought up another issue that wasn’t brought up in the original trial and the original vocational expert did even ask me about the question . First and for most I was never asked about Kaplan Career Instutie of Detroit. If I would have been asked I’ve would have said that I’ve have never received one cent from my exturnshiip-. It just truly upset’s me that I’ve going have to instead of asking for a second Appeals Counicl Action because it will take another two years. I will just have to sue the Social Security Admistration and take them to Federal Court. The only thing that this Adminstrative Law Jaw has on the Denied Request for Review was get this one There is a broad policy or procedural issue that may affect the public interest.

    Thank You:

    Martin E. Washington

    • Karen says:

      Martin – I sympathy with you, my husband was denied at the ALJ hearing and the Judge threw out the RFC filled out by his doctors which they stated he could not work and the disability would last over 12 months. Instead the ALJ judge agreed with the Social Security doctor whom my husband was sent to for an evaluation in March 2011 for 10 minutes (remember my husbands hearing with this Judge was August 2014). The Social Security Doctor said my husband could work a normal job but would “greatly benefit for extreme pain management”, this is the social security doctors own words nothing taken out of context, so the social security doctor pretty much said my husband can work and function normally at work but would need extreme pain management (ok does not make sense if he’s 100% ok and can work why would he need to see a pain doctor). It seemed that a decision was already made before the court hearing. Not sure, what they are doing but I do know many people are suffering dearly from this process. No one is given a choice to have Social Security and Medicare Taxes taken out your pay. But if you become disable and need that money to help pay bills (which this monthly amount is not much) you have to fight tooth and nail to get it and it’s your money, you paid in to this program and now when you need it, really need it, and you have doctors backing you up, they still say no, still not good enough reason. But if we the citizens of the USA told them no, we will not have Social Security and Medicare taxes taken out of our paycheck, they would do anything in there power to make sure they get paid, even if it meant you losing your house, having your wages garnish, assets sold, they the government, which includes Social Security will make sure they get paid and they will charge you late fees and interest. The process needs to be re-written big time, if anything us the people need to clean house, time to get the bad eggs out of office!

  63. Larry Young says:

    I WAS IN A HIGH SPEED MVCOLLISION-JUNE-2005-Whent toba A.L.J.hearing in 2909-he put me on the spot and aked me why I was driving a a motorcycle with a broke neck-told him I had to sell it to survive-the whole time thinking he had the correct medical records he did not-i just found out after all the appeals waite time and my new app pending 2nd ALJ hearing that they never had the correct records-i signed 5 consent forms not only did they not have the write records my-x-lawyer was former gov.emoloyee.I have muskulerskeloter’pulmonary indemnia-hearingandvision impaitments along with A.D.H.D.I have ben to the E.R.three times due to reprocussions from open neck c5c6bone graft illac crest surgery eye and knee surgerys too.1st ALJ gave me unfavorable he said I could get a job as a ticket taker?I whant to give him and this state a ticket for making me feel like a piece of worm dirt after paying taxes my whole life .I become disabled and unable to be productive and get thrown under the bus-like I need any more injuries.Add deoression to my list-Can I contact the commisioner I
    Of social security-Or a congressmen?If I could somehow get a letter to the president he would listen.I ,have ben treated very creul and inhumane. I HAVE BEN LIED TO BYE BARIOUS GOV.EMPLOYES-Told I was waiting on the appeals council to review and approve for 2 yrs.I tried to file a civil action rule 4(c)of the rules of federal procedure states I could not file a civil action oending approval bye the appeals council.They denied my request to re open . Please help me with good news.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Larry,

      If I understand correctly, you have been denied through the appeals process on your first clam and have another claim filed that is now pending. If that is correct, you should probably gather your own records to submit and also have a current physician make a statement regarding your capacity to do light or sedentary work. You have several different conditions and you need to have information that supports your limitations that come from each of those conditions. One question I have is whether your hearing and sight is good enough to do the type of work that was suggested.

      And a last thought, if you are unsuccessful with your claim or even while you are waiting for a decision, you might contact the Department of Vocational Rehabilitation of your state to see whether you could get job placement or job training services. They would first evaluate your ability to work and if they were unable to identify jobs you could do without training or were to refuse services because you are not able to work, you would have additional evidence to submit for your disability claim.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  64. jane says:

    My Disability claim is in the reconsideration status, I already saw two of their doctors, I called yesterday they said a decision has been made as of 4/15 but they could not tell me the answer over phone for 5 days? Can you tell me what that would possibly mean? Approved or Denied?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Jane,

      For whatever reason, Social Security has the policy of not releasing a decision for five days. It may be to assure that the claim is not chosen for Quality Assurance review and the decision becomes final before revealing it. The wait is not a sign of approval or denial.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  65. MRS>HILL says:

    I HAVE FILLED FOR SSI FOR MY SOM WHOM IS 9 I HAVE BEEN DENIED AND HAVE OBTAIN A RECONSIDERATION AS WELL AFTER MY FIRST DENIAL I OBTAIN A LAWER FOR MY RECONSIDERATION DURING MY CONSIDERATION DATE I AM A LITTLE CONFUSE MY CASE HAS BEEN GOING ON SINCE 2011 ,MY SON WAS SENT OUT FOR MEDICAL EXAMINATION TWICE THE FIRST ONE THE DOCTOR TRIED TO SAY THERE WASNT ANYTHING WRONG WITH MY SON HE GAVE SILLY ANSWER HE WAS UNABLE TO GET INFORMATION THAT WAS NEEDED AND HE WAS MOTERVATED TO DO POORLY HE RULED EVERYTHING OUT, WE WERE FILLING FOR ADHD AND SPEECH, WE HAD NOTES FROM TEACHERS DOCTORS EVEN THE SCHOOL PRINCIPAL SO THE JUDGE SENT US TO ANOTHER MENTAL DOCTOR IN THE NEW REPORT MY SON WAS DIAGNOSE WITH ADHD AND BORDERLINE INTELECTUAL FUCTIONING SHE ALSO WROTE HE WAS UNAWARE OF WHAT WAS GOING ON AND OUT OF THE SIX DOMAINS HE HAD FOUR AS MARKED IM CONFUSE BECAUSE THE NEGATIVE REPORT FROM THE FIRST EXAM IS WHO JOINED US BY VDEO CONFRENCE WHY? WHY NOT THE NEW EXAMINATION BEING IT HAD BEEN TWO YEARS AGO WHEN HIS WAS DONE VERSESTHE ONE TWO MONTHS AGO I HAD NEW SUPPORTIVE TEACHERS ,PRICIPAL, AND DOCTORS REPORTS, JUDGE SAYS HES CONFUSE HE WILL GO THROUGH EVERTHING AND ILL HAVE A DECISION IN A MONTH TO A MONTH AND A HALF WHAT WILL ILL BE WAITING FOR CONFUSED CONFUSED CONFUSED MOM! PLEASE HELP!

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Mrs. Hill,

      You did well to point out that the expert who was called to be at the video hearing was not the one who conducted the most recent examination. It is good that the judge said that he would look at everything, which means he should she the report that supports your son’s limitations. If by chance, the claim is denied and the recent report is not adequately addressed in the denial letter, that would be grounds for an Appeal Council review.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

      • Mrs Hill says:

        Thanks Kay I needed to hear that
        I’m at my 30 day mark waiting! But no matter what I want go out without a fight for my son I’ll let you know hat happens ! My layer said if it is not approved it want sit on his desk five minutes before we go to the next step sincerely Mrs.Hil

  66. Kim says:

    My daughter has epilepsy and was denied SSI due to insufficient records, at the time that I applied for her we thought that she had some autoimmune problems as well. When I appeal, I will be claiming just the epilepsy and accompanying effects of it, for example, memory loss, changes in cognitive and psychological issues. Will this present a problem in your opinion? We live in Texas, she cannot attend school because she cannot function well for 8 hours a day. She has been “home bound” since October 2013. She just had cognitive testing done and has a profound memory problem. I assume I should include all of this info with my appeal? I am also trying to get her Neurologist to write a letter on her behalf which he said he would do but has an issue saying it will continue for over a year. It’s already been going on over a year, how do I convince him to just write the letter?

    Signed
    Frustrated Mom

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Kim,

      In your appeal, t is okay to say that the autoimmune problem has been ruled out. Yes, do include all the information about being unable to attend school. Use the ter”home boun.” only if she really doesn’t go out with you to the store or anywhere else. Also, include copies of the cognitive test reports. As far as the letter from the doctor, he can just discuss what has happened in the past and her condition now. He does not need to comment on the future.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  67. John Getty says:

    My wife(26) suffered an AVM(aneurysm) almost 3 years ago. She was on disability with her job. She applied for long term disability and was apparently denied(not sure why) I believe she should file for social security disability.
    She worked for Cigna as a claims manager. After she recovered from the aneurysm she worked part time along with partial disability for about a year and a half. Then went back to full time after it ran out.
    They company was amazing during it all. They eventually dropped her down because she couldn’t pass all the psyche evaluations to be a claims manager because of her speech/memory problems. They did keep her at the same pay rate though doing some lower jobs. Anyway, the job became very hard for her. She was not able to keep up with multi-tasking and the memory problems affected her work. The stress accompanying this ended up not being worth it so she quit the job about 5 months after going back to full time.

    I know she cannot work at the same level she was at before this all happened. Isn’t she allowed to get some disability for this? Or is it an all or nothing type thing? She hasn’t worked in 4 or 5 months, not that she can’t, but I know the speech and memory problems have a lot to do with it.

    Thanks in advance.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear John,

      At age 26, to be eligible for Social Security (SSD) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI), your wife has to be unable to perform substantial gainful activity (SGA) in any occupation she could has the skills to perform absent her medical limitations. SGA earnings guideline is usually $1,070 gross monthly. It is hard to tell whether you are right, that your wife could work in some occupation. Although your wife quit her last job, your remarks indicate that she resigned because she couldn’t keep up with the duties. This means she has been unsuccessful in two occupations since the aneurysm.

      It usually takes an expensive, comprehensive neuropsychological evaluation to determine the extent and exact nature of a person’s cognitive deficits. Your wife might discuss with her physician the possibility of such an evaluation. She might also contact the your state’s Department of Vocational Rehabilitation to see whether they can provide testing and vocational assessment. They may be able to identify occupations your wife can perform with her background and limitations or even provide some job training for those occupations.

      If these investigations indicate that she is unable to work, she could then apply for Social Security Disability. If she applies within seventeen months of when she ceased work the second time, she will not lose any potential retroactive benefits. And, of course, if she thinks she is unable to work, there is nothing keeping her from applying now. Whenever she might apply, I suggest that, in addition to statements and records from her medical providers, she provide statements from her supervisors regarding the performance problems she had.

      One last thought, she might be eligible for a new period of short-term disability on the same policy that covered her before.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  68. Dennis says:

    I have been denied twice by SSDI (Tennessee) and now I learn my case has been sent to Denver. Is this just due to a large backlog? I was told this isn’t for an Administrative Hearing so what could it be? Any reason I should feel optimistic? Tennessee approval rates are among the lowest.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Dennis,

      Hearings are sometimes reassigned to other geographic areas to find a judge who is free. Because you have been told that the transfer is not for a hearing, I suggest that you contact the person or office that notified you and ask for an explanation of what is being done in Denver and what you can expect next.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

    • brett says:

      they r doing me the same way

  69. LarryYoung says:

    I can not get DDS to look at the nedical record stating that my preop c5c6 cervical fusion was done because of instability the preop says the same thing meaning the operation was not successful in stablizing c5c6 vertabrea meaning I will have limitations and pain for the rest of my life be cause once they do this operation they will never and thats it no more so im stuck and have not recieved a dime in bemefits since I broke my neck in june 2005.This is wrong I shoild not have to fight for my constitutional writes when I have ben fighting for my life.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Larry,

      Am I correct in assuming that you meant to say that your preop and postop reports said the same thing, thus showing no improvement.

      I am not sure what you mean when you say that you cannot get DDS to look at your medical records. Do you mean they won’t request the? If so, you can get the records and submit them to DDS yourself. If you mean that it appears DDS is insufficiently considering the information in the reports, it might be helpful to have your physician write an interpretive report that includes a statement of your current limitations.

      Best regards,

      Kay

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