After I file a disability claim, how long does it take the Social Security office to make a determination?

By / March 3, 2016 / Applying for Social Security Disability & SSI Benefits / 1,088 Comments

Find out how long your Social Security office typically takes to process a Social Security disability claim and learn when expedited handling applies.

Social Security Disability Processing Time Varies
Processing time for Social Security Disability claims varies. Currently, the Social Security Administration, which is sometimes referred to as SSA, indicates that generally initial disability claim processing takes from three to five months. The time frame to complete processing depends on how much medical information is needed to reach a decision and on how quickly you and your medical providers respond to requests from the state agency that SSA uses to evaluate your claim for disability. Processing time also depends on whether a consultative examination with an SSA-appointed physician is needed for additional information. Agency backlogs due to a higher than usual influx of claims can also affect processing times. For more detailed information about the disability evaluation process, see our article How Does the Social Security Administration Apply Social Security Laws to Determine If I Am Disabled?

Some Claims Are Expedited
There are two types of claims that qualify for expedited processing. The first is Compassionate Allowance claims. If an individual suffers from one of a limited list of diseases, illnesses, or injuries from which no recovery can be expected, either due to the condition itself or due to the advanced stage of the condition, special evidence rules apply. Because these conditions have invariably been found to meet disability requirements under the Listing of Impairments, these claims are fast tracked and require minimal confirming information for approval. Examples of such conditions are very advanced untreatable cancers and paralyzing spinal cord injuries.

The second type of claim that can receive expedited handling is one in which the claimant is likely disabled and supporting medical evidence is readily available. These claims are automatically fast-tracked for a Quick Disability Decision, which is often completed in less than a month.

Deferral of Your Social Security Disability Determination
On the other end of the spectrum, very occasionally Social Security defers making a decision on a claim until nearly twelve months have passed from the disability date. This occurs if you are severely disabled initially, such as by a stroke; but based on the medical evidence, you could recover prior to being disabled for twelve months. In this situation, your Social Security office will notify you that the decision on your claim is on hold until closer to the end of twelve months, when updated medical information will be obtained and a decision made.

After I file a disability claim, how long does it take the Social Security office to make a determination?
3.5 (70%) 6 votes

  • Dear eLephantinTher00m,

    The screening is for insured status to see if the person is insured on the date claimed. It is correct that if a prior denial is closed (i.e., the denial is not pending at another level of appeal), you must claim a date of disability that is after the last denial. This is because it was already determined that you were not disabled up to the date of the prior decision. Good that you are being served by an office that has quickly moved your claim along to DDS.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • You are welcome.

  • Dear Wendy,

    Yes, you should call and request that an appointment be set up.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear eLephantinTher00m,

    The medical decision on a new claim is always made the Disability Determination Services (DDS) for both Social Security and SSI claims. The local office gathers information and screens to be sure that you potentially meet the non-medical requirements and gathers information about any work you are performing before the claim is sent to the DDS.

    My understanding is that SSA does not accept evidence via email. You can request the fax number and fax medical documentation directly to the examiner or mail it via the postal service.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Kem,

    Usually the review takes less than a month.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Kem,

    The approval is not finalized until the quality assurance review confirms it. If the claim is for Social Security Disability (SSDI) and you have been disabled for at least five months, payment will probably begin within one to two months. Back pay could take another one to two months after that. If the approval is for Supplemental Security Income (SSI), payment is calculated and paid in the local office and should be paid within a month after the review confirms an approval.

    Sincerely,
    Kay
    Kay

  • Angela Meche Denais

    Hi I applied in Jan an I got approved for disability but how do they put my onset date in February

    • Dear Angela,

      If you applied only for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits start the month after application, so even if your date of disability was established to be before you applied, your SSI would not start till February. Because of this for simplicity the examiner may have just determined the earliest date needed to get you all the benefits payable.

      If, however, you applied for Social Security Disability (SSDI), you can appeal the date of onset. If this is the case, you can request a copy of your claim file so you can see the exact reasons for the partially favorable approval with the later disability date. That information will help you formulate your appeal.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Dear Lora,

    If you were approved for Social Security Disability (SSDI), the central payment center will review your claim for proof of age, double-check that you were insured for SSDI on your established disability onset date, and apply any offsets (reductions) for workers compensation or any other benefit that causes reduction. Once the review is done, the payment is authorized. This process will be at least a month, but more likely two and possibly more.

    If you were approved for Supplemental Security Income (SSI), the review and payment authorization is done by the local office. The review is of your family income and assets and your living arrangements and you may be asked to provide documentation of these eligibility factors.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Qnbeee47,

    It is likely to be six weeks or two months before monthly benefits start and an additional month or two or even more for the back pay to be released.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Tamalia,

    The status report you have does not indicate whether you have been approved or denied. Watch the mailbox and check from time to time online to watch for the status to update with the decision.

    Sincerely,
    kay

  • Dear Jasmine,

    Benefits will be paid based on the current Supplemental Security Income (SSI) application. This means that benefits will begin the month following the month of application unless you applied on the first of the month in which case benefits begin with the month of application.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Qnbeee47,

    You must have applied for SSI for them to show a pending claim. The claim was probably filed at the same time as the Social Security (SSD aka SSDI) claim. If you do have a pending SSI claim, it will be processed by the local office before the payment center processes the medical approval of your Social Security claim.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Pearl,

    It does seem that more quality reviews are being done. Also more physician reviews are being done within the Disability Determination Services before the claims examiners decision is finalized.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Jasmine,

    It would appear that the office is backlogged with work and unable to keep up with its commitments on when things will be done. At this point, with the various follow-ups you have done, all you can do is wait. Although there is an administrative district office and a regional office, calling either of them would not help.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear ELephantinTher00m,

    The change in rules that I saw said “effective for claim filed on or after March 27, 2017.” Nothing to lose by asking again for the RFC statement, but it is unlikely if you have been refused before. Likely the agency has a policy against their doctors providing them.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Maria,

    You are just being told a medical decision about whether or not you are disabled under Social Security law has been made. The decision may either an approval or denial. You should get notification within a couple weeks at most.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear E.,

    Yes, a copy of the statement for your student loan will help document your Social Security Disability claim. However, beginning March 27, 2017, the rules changed and the statements of treating physicians are no longer given greater weight than other evidence in your claim file.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Jennie,

    Yes, your understanding is correct. It is possible for the Appeals Council to select your husband’s claim to do a type of quality assurance review of the judge’s decision, which could affirm the judge’s decision or not. Another more remote possibility is that an error was made in posting the approval online, which should not be posted until after the hearing decision letter has been prepared and signed. Letter preparation can take quite a while, most of which is the decision waiting to be written up.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Please see my response of a few minutes ago to your last post. Please allow forty-eight hours for a reply.

    Thank you,
    Kay

  • Dear ELephantinTherm00m,

    Comments and questions are not posted until they are reviewed and answered if a reply is needed. I cannot answer your question about loan forgiveness. I suggest that you contact the student loan server or whoever the lender is to get your question answered.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Jennie,

    If you husband’s appeal is at the hearing level and he has not had a hearing, the decision has to be an approval because hearing-level appeals cannot be denied without a hearing.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Maria,

    Whether or not you are disabled according to Social Security law depends on how severely you are limited by COPD and your anxiety, the kind of limitations and the demands of occupations you have done in the past and new occupations you would be qualified to perform. If you are unable to work consistently in any occupation you are qualified for, your claim will be approved.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Kass,

    The online status reports can be obtained by setting up a My Social Security account on Social Security’s website at http://www.ssa.gov. However, more detailed information is available by calling the hearing office. Unless the decision is almost ready to go out to you (letter written), I suggest that you discuss with your attorney submitting a statement of dire need based on not being about to get medical care for your stage-four cancer. That might speed the processing a bit.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Maria,

    Reports that I am getting seem to indicate that “review for processing accuracy” is a final step in the determination being made by the Disability Determination Services and is usually a physician review of the examiners determination. It would appear that all claims are getting this final-step review. The status does not let you know whether the provisional determination is an approval or a denial.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Ad,

    I am not able to estimate your benefits; however, I can tell you that If you are approved for childhood disability benefits (CDB) paid to disabled adult children, you will receive benefits from both your parents’ earnings records under a combined family maximum. The amount will be more than what would be payable under only one parent. Just be sure that Social Security knows you are filing a claim on both parents’ earnings records.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

    • Ad

      Dear Kay,

      If my parents divorced in 1992, would I still receive both of their earnings? She remarried in 1992, but my stepfather never adopted me. My biological father passed away in 2012, and I am applying for his surviving child benefit, in addition to my mother’s child benefit. My mother receives SSDI, and so did my father. My father received more than she does in SSDI. Thank you.

      • Dear Ad,

        Your parents divorce and your mother’s remarriage does not affect your relationship to each of your biological parents, so you can apply for benefits on both their accounts.

        Sincerely,
        Kay

  • Dear Jasmine,

    Yes, the award letter with include payment amounts.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Mia,

    I recommend that you hire an experienced Social Security attorney to assist with the appeal. I recommend requesting a copy of your claim file so you can see the exact reasons for the denial and share the information with prospective attorney. One way to approach selecting an attorney is contacting your state’s bar association to get a list of attorneys who focus their practice on Social Security. Then inquire whether any have had any complaints or sanctions against them. That will help you eliminate some. Then you can request a consultation with two or three and ask how they would approach appealing your claim. That will give you some basis for choosing one.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Ad,

    Evidence from therapists is not given as much weight as evidence from psychiatrists and psychologists, so it will be important that your psychiatrists submit their records. However, in your case where you have to prove disability back several years, even the therapists records from that time will be important.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Jasmine,

    Some claims do get off track from time to time. The fact that a supervisor is involved is good because it is likely to keep moving now.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Make,

    I think that the May 1 benefit amount is just listed twice, possibly because one shows the breakout information about the overpayment. The April 17 payment show might be the one your refer to receiving on the 25th, but SSI is once it gets started is paid on the first of the month. If you want to be certain of the situation, you can call Social Security at 1-800-772-1213 for an explanation.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Tay,

    The notice means that the decision to approve your claim was vacated (undone) and your claim is again pending a decision. It could be a good idea to call the Disability Determination Services (DDS) to find out what is missing so you can hopefully submit it.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Bryan,

    It looks like you post was cut off. Do you want to re-post?

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Debbie,

    I think that the change in status means you will be getting the hearing decision letter very soon. You can call the hearing office to find out whether it has been sent. If it has not, the appeal is still pending regardless what the online status says.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Jasmine,

    Yes, sometimes first payments are received before the award letter particularly if you have direct deposit or a DirectExpress card.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • You are welcome, Turner.

  • Dear Turner,

    Please see my response to your first two questions.

    Thank you,
    Kay

  • Dear Turner,

    Please see my response of earlier today to your first post. A couple of things I would add here: First, one of the ADL questionnaires may have been for someone who knows you well to complete. Next, people are usually sent for consultative examinations only if there are questions that are not answered by the person’s own medical records. Lastly, my guess as to why you were asked to go to the office and then an SSI application was taken is that you only filed an application for Social Security and nothing was discussed about Supplemental Security Income (SSI) at that time. When this was noticed, you were called in to be screened for the SSI non-medical to requirements.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Turner,

    I suggest that you call the DDS and ask them why you are getting requests from Virginia. It is possible that the Texas Disability Determination Services is overloaded with work and they have sent some to a Virginia DDS for processing.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Jasmine,

    You are being told the length of time that internal guidelines say the local office has to get payments started. You may receive benefits before then or it could take that long if the office is very backed up. I suggest that you check with the local office to find out if they need any documents from you to document your family’s income and assets.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Turner,

    The language in your status report is stock language used for all claims while they are beingr reviewed to determine whether or not you are disabled. There’s no need to be concerned based on it.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Dodo,

    No attorney cannot speed up your husband’s hearing date. It is typical to wait a long time to get the date scheduled. You can look up the average wait time to for a hearing date in your area by going to https://www.ssa.gov/appeals/DataSets/01_NetStat_Report.html. (Note that if you get in a position of being threatened with eviction or foreclosure, your attorney can submit a dire-need statement, which might speed things up a little bit.)

    In the meantime all your husband can be sure that his attorney is kept up to date about his treatment and condition, so the judge will have up-to-date information when his hearing does come up.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Kimberly,

    I believe that you are saying that your daughter’s claim was forwarded to the Disability Determination Services (DDS) for review of her medical and vocational history to determine whether she is disabled according to Social Security law. The August date you were given for a decision is not necessarily how long it will take. Most claims are decided within two to five months of filing, so you daughter could receive a decision sooner. Reasons for lengthy processing times are slow responses for requests for information from the claimant or her doctors and work backlogs due to under-staffing.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

    • Kimberly s

      Ok. Today marked the 1st month date. So i will check on it today i guess

    • Kimberly s

      Shes actually 4 years old.

  • You are welcome, Natalie.

  • Dear Dar,

    I feel reasonably sure that your nephew will be approved for disability benefits if all his medical records are submitted including recent eye tests that document legal blindness.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Natalie,

    Please see my response to the comment you posted right before this one.

    Thank you,
    Kay

  • Dear Natalie,

    The online status, which you sent in a separate message, is just telling you that your claim is being reviewed to determine whether or not you are disabled.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Natalie,

    There is no deadline.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Frank,

    It typically takes one to two months to get the first monthly Social Security Disability (SSDI) payment and a couple months or more after that to get back pay.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Rick,

    If it is determined that you cannot do the occupation you performed over your entire working career, it is likely your claim will be approved because the grids you refer to consider you to be a worker of advanced age and you have done only one kind of work in the past. Your physician is not an expert in Social Security law, so it is possible that you could be approved for benefit;s however, if the testing supports you can do the heavy work you have been doing and your doctor does not support disability, a claim might not be successful. I suggest that you talk with your doctor again about the medical advisability to return full time to the occupation you are in. Be sure he knows how much weight you lift and how often during the day you lift it and how far you have to carry it. Ask if whether your cardiac health allows you to do that level of heavy work. If so, you can accept that you are not disabled or you can get a second cardiac opinion.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Mario,

    It is possible that your claim has been approved, but you will not know for sure until you receive notification.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Jacob,

    Requests for reconsideration, which is the first level of appeal, typically take from two to five months.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Jasmine,

    I am unable to give you a reliable estimate. Processing times vary from one DDS to another and and also vary with a single location depending on the volume of claims moving through at any given time. The examiner you spoke to might be able to give you an estimate.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Waiting Patiently,

    “Processing decision,” if that is what you meant to write, would mean that a decision has been made. Because the date is a month ago, I suggest that you check with the local office to determine whether a medical decision has in fact been made and your claim has been sent to the payment processing center for calculation and payment or a denial letter was sent to you that went astray. The last possibility is that the online report is not worded as I assumed and the claim is still in the Disability Determination Services (DDS) and a decision has not been made.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Burnis,

    I am unable to give you an estimate. The local office can tell the payment center about the local delay and request rush handling, but there is no guarantee regarding how long it will take. If you haven’t received payment in thirty days, you can ask the local office to follow up.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • You are welcome, Lins.

  • Dear Lins,

    The status report is telling you that the post-hearing appeals process is in progress. The process involves the judge making a decision on your claim, a decision letter being written, and the judge reviewing and signing the letter. If you haven’t gotten a letter in sixty days, you can call the hearing office to get a status.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Hope,

    It is unusual that you would be denied the day after a mental evaluation. Ordinarily it would take some time for the examiner to receive the consultative examination report and review it and prepare the decision. You could be approved for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and be denied the Social Security Disability (SSD) if you are not now insured for Social Security and you didn’t have medical documentation of disability for the period of time during which you were still insured.

    If you are denied, I recommend getting the help of an experienced Social Security attorney to help with your appeal. When you hire a Social Security attorney, you do not have to pay any legal fees up front and you will pay attorney fees only if you are approved for benefits. Social Security law sets the amount the attorney can charge and the Social Security Administration pays the attorney directly from your back pay.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Rudy,

    I don’t know what is intended with the two different wordings because people have reported both approvals and denials after both of the wordings.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Shelia,

    If your claim is in the initial claim stage and is not under appeal, the online status report you received likely means that a medical decision has been made on your claim and that your claim has been randomly chosen for a quality assurance (QA) review. The review can result in an affirmation of the decision or return of your claim to the claims examiner for more investigation and/documentation.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • You are welcome, Dianne.

  • Dear Penny,

    A decision has been made on your claim. You should know within the next week to ten days what that decision might be.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Penny,

    If at some point the online status showed a reconsideration pending and then it moved to a medical decision made, the decision, however quick, is probably on the reconsideration. How long it takes them to post the decision is not an indication of approval or denial.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Dianne,

    The guideline for getting a decision after a hearing is sixty days, but often it takes longer. I suggest that you call the hearing office to find out where your claim is in the post-hearing appeal process. (Your local office will only be able to tell you that the hearing decision is pending, that is, in process.)

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Penny,

    As indicated, the status can precede an approval or a denial, whether on an initial claim or on a reconsideration.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Brenda,

    There will be no update until a decision is made on your claim. The status will stay the same and not show their requests or what you submit.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • You are welcome, Dobbi.

  • Dear William,

    Your claim is being actively worked on so you may receive a decision within a few weeks.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • You are welcome, Amanda.

  • Dear Amanda,

    Yours is the first report of the wording “benefit application under review” so I don’t know what it means. If I were give an opinion just on what the plain English means (not what Social Security intends it to mean), I’d say the claim was medically approved and the non-medical requirements were being rechecked so that payment could be calculated and authorized; however, you can’t count on that.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Chelle,

    Social Security will garnish your benefits only if there is a court order on file. Perhaps if the amount you owe is not finalized, there will be no court order. I suggest you try to get some information from the court to clarify with them whether or not a garnishment order would be produced.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Heidi,

    It could mean either an approval or denial. People are reporting both approvals and denials after receiving that status report.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Chelle,

    Not all your benefits will be withheld under the garnishment order.The longer you wait for SSDI payment, the more months of and bigger amount of back pay you will be eligible for. Similarly, if you are not now paying child support each month, the amount of past-due child support increases while you wait for benefits. However, if you think an error is being made, you need to correct it with the court because the Social Security Administration will just follow the court order.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Mia,

    It’s hard to say why essentially the same information is being requested twice, but complete the second form as fully as if the other one had not already been submitted. Also, put on the form that you are still on crutches with a knee cast and that your follow-up care is limited to the essential because of lack of insurance and funds to pay out of pocket.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Sadara,

    People who have received that online status have reported both approvals and denials after receiving that status report, so all it really reveals is that a disability decision has been made on your claim and additional work is required to evaluate the non-medical eligibility requirements if the medical decision was an approval or just get the denial letter out to you, if it was not.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • You are welcome, Mia.

  • Dear Just Me,

    Yes, workers compensation offset is applied first to dependent benefits with any left over offset applied to the wage earner.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • You are welcome, Mari.

  • Dear Elle,

    Medical decisions are not conveyed orally, only by written notification. People have reported both approvals and denials after the status you received.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Mari,

    The quality assurance (QA) reviews are random. The decision has been made and if QA agrees it has been properly documented, it will not be changed. As long as no estimated benefits are showing, it is possible that the decision was an approval. However, if you are denied, you can request a copy of your claim file to see the exact reasons for the denial. You will also be able to check that everything you submitted and all the information you provided is in file.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Just Me,

    I’d say that on February 7, the recalculation was at least assigned to a claims authorizer to work on. I cannot estimate how long it will take, but if your husband has not received the adjustment by the end of April, I suggest that you ask the local office to inquire again.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear ArmyBandWife,

    Social Security Disability can take a couple months to start after SSI is paid. I suggest that you contact the local office to check with the payment center to make sure your claim is on track, which could mean that it is waiting in line to be processed in the order it came in.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Make,

    The information you have provided in earlier questions together with this information would indicte approval. The amount of information available to the representatives in the call center is limited so they would not know whether or not payee was recommended for you.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Nate,

    The letter could be either an approval or a denial. As far as the online status, it appears that there’s been a delay in updating the status.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Nate,

    Some people are reporting approvals after this wording when they have had an appeal at the hearing level.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • You are welcome, Terri.

  • Thank you, Chelle.

  • Dear Terri,

    If your local office doesn’t know yet, then there is really no way to find out the decision until you and the local office are notified of the decision.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Rick,

    Not necessarily. People are reporting both approvals and denials after these online status reports.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • You are welcome, Chelle.

  • You are welcome, Jennifer.

  • Dear Nate,

    The status means that the judge is considering the evidence to make a decision or that the decision has been made and is in the letter writing department. You may be able to get more specific information by calling the hearing office.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Make,

    I would say that the overpayment notice is a sign that things are moving along in the processing of your claim. The letters following your Social Security number are part of the claim number and identify the person who is receiving benefits on the earnings record of the person who holds the Social Security number. I am not familiar with CHA. CH is child of a disabled worker and HA is the suffix that indicates the disabled worker.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Chelle,

    I did receive your question and I answered a very moments ago, so please see that reply. Usually an attorney will say that there’s a strong chance that the appeal will be approved; they will not say that a person has been approved without the judge saying so. However, the judge may have used words that the attorney recognized as an approval. You can ask the attorney what basis he had for saying the claim would be approved. Regarding the letter you needed, the representative cannot say you have been approved until the approval is formalized by an approval letter.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Chelle,

    If the judge told your attorney that he or she was going to approve your claim, it is very unlikely that the claim would be denied. Individuals who have had hearings and received the online status you quote have reported being approved.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • You are welcome, Inastazia.

  • Dear Mia,

    Chances of approval should be good, especially since your health has worsened since then. I suggest that in about a month, you contact the claims examiner to see whether all the records and medical statements you want to have considered have either been received or requested.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • You are welcome, Cindy.

  • Dear Inastazia,

    Yes, your reasons are a basis for submitting a dire need letter.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • DearLisabear,

    I suggest that you call the local office with the exact wording in the status to find out whether our claim has been forwarded to the payment center. If it has, your claim has been approved. If not and if the decision is a denial, you should have a letter in a week to ten days.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Cindy,

    The addition of “benefit application under review” could mean that your claim was medically approved and is being processed in the payment center. I suggest that you check with Social Security to confirm the meaning of the status report.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Latrice,

    “Pending” is a general word meaning that no decision has been finalized by a signed letter mailed out to you. After the hearing, the appeal goes through several pending stages. The most accurate information is obtainable by calling the hearing office, which you did. It may help to know that the guideline for getting a hearing decision is sixty days, but it often takes longer.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Jennifer,

    Yes, pancreatic cancer does qualify for expedited processing under the compassionate allowance procedures. I can’t give you a length of time, partly because processing times vary from one area to another; but if you submit a statement from your physician confirming the diagnosis and how it was diagnosed, the processing time should be significantly shorter than otherwise.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • You are welcome, Penny.

  • Dear Penny,

    If you were approved for both Social Security Disability (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI), it can take a couple months after SSI starts for Social Security to start. If you are due any SSI back pay, you should receive that within a month.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • You are welcome, Heather.

  • Dear Dinah,

    The eleven-month average wait time is an average, so it could take a few months longer. That said, I would think you would hear by May what your hearing date will be.

    Note that your attorney doesn’t have the power to get you an earlier hearing date; however, if you are in dire need, such as on the verge of eviction or foreclosure, you can submit a statement of dire need to the hearing office, which might speed things up a bit. If this is the case, I do, however, suggest you discuss this with your attorney before taking action.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • You are welcome, Nicole.

  • Nicole Alexander

    Dear Kay,

    I am hoping you can help me. Here is how it is listed on the web site…12/06/2016
    Disability Determination Decision Under Review

    Your benefit application is currently under review for processing accuracy. Once the review is complete, we will continue processing your benefit application.

    01/20/2016
    The Disability Determination Service for your state started processing the medical portion of your benefit application.

    12/31/2015
    We started reviewing your Disability benefit application.

    12/31/2015
    Your Disability benefit application was receive

    It makes no sense when going by the dates shown. I did apply on that date though. I called my local office and I was told that it could take 17 months in quality and that it was sent to quality on January 23rd of this year. What in the world is happening here? I do get SSI at this time. Have I been denied?

    Thanks for the insight!
    Nicole

    • Dear Nicole,

      As you describe the situation, I have trouble making sense of it also. Usually, quality assurance (QA) reviews of processing accuracy occur before any benefits are paid and take a month or less. They can be of an approval or denial decision. However, the puzzling part is that you are getting SSI. Did you apply for Social Security Disability (SSDI) after getting Supplemental Security Income (SSI)?

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Dear Cory,

    Your claim may have been randomly selected for a quality assurance (QA) review. The review can agree that the decision is correctly documented or the claim could be returned to claims examiner for more investigation or documentation. The online status reports are sometimes not up-to-date, so it is likely that both claims are under QA review.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear XxXx,

    If you have filed an application and have never gotten a denial, you will not go before a judge to get a decision. Except for in a few parts of the country where a hearing is the first appeal, you would only see a judge if your claim had been denied twice. If youf claim has never been denied, I suggest that you seek clarification from your attorney as a miscommunication may have occurred.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Xx,

    The statement you suggest could help your claim, but the neurologist needs to include in the letter a description of the symptoms and limitations you have, what causes those limitations, and what testing or examination proves the cause, and why he believes you will not improve.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

    • XxXxXxXx

      Would this allow the process to go quicker, or would this only help for me to not get denied?

      • Dear Xx,

        It would help you not get denied. It might also speed things up because receipt of the statement would draw attention to your claim, which might move it along.

        Sincerely,
        Kay

        • XxXxXxXx

          I filed my disability with my lawyer, it’s been 6 months and he still says I’m waiting to go infront of a judge. Could you elaborate on what stage I am in for my disability. And how long I still have left, if only an estimate.

          • Dear Xx,

            Please see my response to your first post of this question. How long you have yet to wait depends on whether you are in appeal or initial claim.

            Sincerely,
            Kay

  • You are welcome, Penny.

  • Dear Make,

    With a July 2016 onset date, benefits would begin to accrue August 2016 if you filed your new application July 2016 or earlier.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Penny,

    It is possible that they overlooked asking for something. Be sure to submit what they asked for.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Joshua,

    To select an attorney, I suggest that you interview two or three attorneys, who list Social Security disability claims as part of their practice. Asking how they would approach the issues in your claim, how and how often they keep you informed, whether they expect you to gather evidence or they will do it, what percentage of their practice is Social Security or SSI claims or how many SSDI/SSI claims they handle a year. Also consider whether you feel comfortable with the person. That will help you pick an attorney. You can perform these interviews in person or by phone if any are not local.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Make Murdock,

    The claim coming out of the review quickly means that the original decision was upheld, but it does not tell you whether the decision was an approval or denial. Some have reported approvals after receiving the wording “process your benefit application.” I suggest that about a week from now that you call your local office to find out whether your claim was approved and, if so, to ask whether any financial update information is needed from you in order to get payment started.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

    • Make. Murdock

      On more question do you think my chances of being approved will be greater due to the fact that I was previously receiving SSI. It was suspended for longer than a year that’s why I had to rr-apply.
      Thank you for your time and patience also

      • Dear Make,

        If your condition has not improved, yes, I would think that your chances of approval would be good.

        Sincerely,
        Kay

  • Dear BB,

    It is possible that your claim has been approved. I suggest that you contact your local office to inquire if you do not hear from them within a week to ten days of when the claim was sent.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Dad,

    It is likely the SSI will be a denial also because the same medical criteria apply for the two benefits. The only possibility of an SSI approval would be if you have been denied SSDI because you became disabled after you were last insured for benefits but are currently disabled. In that circumstance you could be approved for SSI.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • You are welcome, Penny.

  • Dear Burnis,

    Please see my response to your first post.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Joshua,

    I suggest that you appeal and that you hire an experienced Social Security attorney to assist 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 the attorney can charge and the Social Security Administration pays the attorney directly from your back pay.

    It could also be helpful to request a copy of your claim file so that you and your attorney can see the exact reasons for the denial and what evidence was in file and used as the basis of the decision.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Penny,

    In a Social Security claim it consists of checking to be sure you have enough work credits to be insured for benefits, checking for and applying offsets (reductions) to benefits caused by workers compensation, SSI, and certain government pensions.

    In Supplemental Security Income (SSI), it is reviewing each month to see that you are within the resource limit and if so reviewing your income including any in-kind income that comes from your living arrangements to determine each month’s payment amount.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Burnis,

    It can take a month or two for the auxiliary benefits to start.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Penny,

    The letter means you are approved if the final non-medical review of your Social Security Disability claim finds you are insured for benefits.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear JRL,

    It is not uncommon for workers comp recalculations to take six months; most of that time is spent waiting for your claim’s turn to come up for the actual work to be done on it. Ffollow-up by an attorney might or might not have any benefit in regards to speeding things up.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Joshua,

    The February 17, 2017 status says that your SSI claim has been denied. You should receive a letter within a week or a little more. It is likely that your SSDI claim will be denied also because the medical requirements for the programs are the same. The only exception would be if you were found to be eligible for a limited period (closed period) of time that ended before you filed your SSI application. You will likely see an SSDI claim denial in the online status within a week.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Art,

    The decision–medical approval or denial–seems to be showing up online within a week or a little more. The letter if a denial would arrive not long after. An approval for Social Security Disability (SSDI) would be sent to the payment center, where it could take as much as a couple months for the first payment and award letter to be released finalizing approval (longer if you also have a Supplemental Security Income (SSI) claim). With an SSI claim, the local office should call you within a week to ten days of the decision showing up online if they need to update your financial information before payment. The award letter is released about the same time as the payment, finalizing approval.

    Sincerely,
    Kay Derochie

  • Dear Tina,

    Investigation to see whether or not you can work in another occupation from those you have done in the past is part of many disability claim reviews. It does not necessarily mean your claim will be denied.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • You are welcome, Mike.

  • Dear Penny,

    The status initially seemed to indicate a claim approval notice would be following, but now some people are reporting denials, so all I can say for sure is that a decision has been made and you should get additional information before long.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear David,

    Your claim has been randomly selected for a quality assurance review. The review can agree with the decision or send it back for additional investigation or documentation.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Joe,

    Individuals who have received this status have later reported that their claim has been approved. I suggest you keep watching the status online for more information.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Penny,

    Some people are reporting approved claims after receiving the status that says “working to process your benefit application.”

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Joe,

    A decision has been made about whether or not you are disabled. At least some people are reporting approvals after getting the wording “we are working to process your benefit application.” I suggest that you keep watching for status updates.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Nico,

    I don’t know what is being sent to you. Even a hearing decision letter would not weigh nearly a pound and a half. Could it be an 1.4 ounces?

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Penny,

    Living in a different state from where you worked has no effect on your claim because you are applying for federal benefits.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Jen,

    The medical requirements for a determination of disability are the same for SSI and SSD. The only circumstances that you could have an SSD approval with an SSI medical denial would be if you were found disabled for a limited period of time that ended before you filed your claims. If that were the case, SSD could be paid once in a single payment for a closed period of disability.

    If you are denied, I suggest that you request a copy of your claim file to review for the exact reasons for the denials and the evidence on which the decisions were based and that you consult with an experienced Social Security attorney to help determine whether you should appeal again. 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 the attorney can charge and the Social Security Administration pays the attorney directly from your back pay.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear 5 Points,

    The letter may be sitting on the judge’s desk waiting for him or her to review and sign it, or the judge may have reviewed the letter and found errors and sent it back for correction. If you wish, you can call the hearing office again to get a status.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • You are welcome, Anxious.

  • Dear FML64,

    Thank you for the information. Perhaps the wording can go either way or maybe an incorrect status was posted or maybe it depends on the level of appeal.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear F.,

    You can request a copy of your claim file and the hearing transcript, review it carefully, and point out to the Appeals Council any errors that were made in arriving at the last denial by the judge. Also hiring an experienced Social Security attorney could help with the analysis of the basis for your appeal. When you hire a Social Security attorney, you do not have to pay any legal fees up front and you will pay attorney fees only if you are approved for benefits. Social Security law sets the amount the attorney can charge and the Social Security Administration pays the attorney directly from your back pay.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Mike,

    The language “processing the rest of your benefit application” has been indicative of an approval. If you have not been contacted by the local office within ten days, contact them for an appointment to give a financial update to get Supplemental Security Income (SSI) started.

    Social Security Disability (SSDI) benefits begin to accrue the later of twelve months before the month you applied or the sixth full calendar month of disability, as established by Social Security. SSI benefits begin the month following the month of application unless you applied on the first of the month in which case benefits begin with the month of application. SSI will be paid first and SSDI back pay will be reduced by the amount of SSI paid for the same months.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Chica,

    Social Security Disability is not paid in partial payments. I wonder if the payment you received was for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) authorized by the local office. If so, your Social Security Disability (SSDI) back pay will be reduced by SSI back benefits paid for the same months.

    I suggest that you call your local office to clarify the source of the payment you received. If it is SSI, ask the office to double-check that the office notified the payment center of the processing of the SSI. If you have not received your SSDI back pay by the end of March, you might call again and ask for a manager-to-manager call to the payment center to check that your claim is on track for authorization of payment. (If you are due a large amount of back pay, it requires multiple reviews and authorizations.)

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Thank you, Bruce.

  • You are welcome, Corine.

  • Dear Chef Eric,

    Your claim is pending more than the usual amount of time. One factor is likely the change in examiners.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • You are welcome, Heather.

  • You are welcome, Bruce.

  • Dear Tony,

    I have not received any comments with this particular combination of status reports. The language “working to process your benefit application” seems to lead up to notification of approval. Also, it seems as if the SSI and SSDI status updates do not occur at the same time even though the same decision is being made on both. I am uncertain about what the absence of a status signifies; it could just be that they are updating.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Nichole,

    You can request Expedited Reinstatement, which will give up to six months of provisional benefits while it is being determined whether you are again disabled.

    If your benefits are reinstated, after the Expedited Reinstatement, you will begin a period called an Initial Reinstatement Period (IRP), which is the first twenty-four (not necessarily consecutive) months of payment. During this time, you will be paid only for months that you do not perform substantial gainful activity (SGA). After the of the IRP, you are again eligible for a new Trial Work Period, Extended Period of Eligibility and Expedited Reinstatement. You can read about this at https://www.ssa.gov/redbook/en….

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Chrissy,

    Normal processing time for a new claim is two to five months. Currently, your claim is undergoing medical review to determine whether you are disabled as defined by Social Security law. You can submit a statement of dire need based on being close to eviction and processing might be speeded up a little. To help your claim move along, contact your doctors and try to get them to send your records to the claims examiner at the Disability Determination Services (DDS).

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Crystal,

    The claim may have arrived at the DDS on December 6, but not have been assigned to the claims examiner until twenty-eight days ago. I can’t predict how long it will take to get a decision after the second medical records are received. A decision could be made on the records or you could be asked to attend a consultative examination, which would lengthen the time, or there could just be a processing delay due to workload.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Leta,

    Typically the wording “processing the decision” has led up to a medical denial. Also, the Supplemental Security Income (SSI) may have been a medical denial because your Social Security would not count for SSI until you received it.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Debbie,

    If you have never received a decision on your initial application of March 2016, I suggest that you call the local office’s attention to how long your claim has pended and ask if they can do anything to have the Disability Determination Services (DDS) expedite the review now. If they say they cannot help, call the DDS and ask to speak to a manager. Then if you do not have payment within a month, I suggest contacting your congressperson’s office to see if they will follow up for you.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Latonya,

    The language “working to process your application” has been known to lead up to notification of approval. If you are denied, please write back and tell me the language and that you were denied.

    Thank you,
    Kay

  • Dear Corine,

    Some claims get overly delayed and it appears yours is one. The examiner is now working on the claim. Perhaps you can follow up with the doctor to see that the form is completed and returned in a timely fashion. You might also let the examiner know that you are posting medical care for lack of funds and hope to have a decision soon.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Jennifer,

    Be sure to call the claims examiner at the state Disability Determination Services and answer his questions. His statement seems to indicate that he plans to recommend approval but needs to fill in some missing information.

    If you are approved for Social Security Disability (SSD aka SSDI), benefits begin to accrue the later of twelve months before the month you applied or the sixth full calendar month of disability, as established by Social Security. If you are approved for Supplemental Security Income (SSI), your benefits will begin the month following the month of application unless you applied on the first of the month in which case benefits begin with the month of application.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Allen,

    The wording you describe has led up to notification of denial in a couple cases. If you are approved, please write to tell me and reference this status language again.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear FML64,

    The wording “working to process your decision” has led up to a denial in several cases. If you are approved, please write to let us know and refer to this language when you do.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Shondrika,

    It can take a couple months for auxiliary benefits to start. Sometimes the award letters are received after the first payment.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Kesha,

    Probably, the representative hasn’t had time to do the work to enter everything into the computer to calculate and authorize payment. If you don’t receive payment by the end of the month, you might try going to the office to follow up.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Megan,

    It is good that your geographic area is no as backlogged as some others and that your claim has move quickly into active review. The fact that you were asked to attend a consultative examination means that your medical records left some questions about your condition(s) unanswered.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Peter,

    The status you quote does not indicate that your claim has been selected for a quality assurance (QA) review. The wording “working to process your decision” seems to be indicating a denial. If you are approved, please write back referencing the specific wording and let us know about the approval.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Reginald,

    The request for your wife’s pay stubs indicates that you have been approved for Supplemental Security Income (SSI), which is authorized by the local office. It can take a few weeks to a month or more for the local office to authorize the first monthly payment. You may receive payment about a week before the award letter. Back pay is usually issued within less than a month after that.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Guest,

    I suggest that you call Social Security about the date and the entry. If you are already receiving benefits, the status doesn’t make sense. There may be a problem with the automated system if the dates are posted automatically, or it could be a clerical error and someone else’s data was posted to your record.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Chellie,

    Initial claims take from two to five months to process. You apparently did not complete your initial application papers until November 29, so count from that date. You can call the Disability Determination Services (DDS) and inquire whether they are waiting for anything from your medical providers. If so, you can follow up to see it is submitted.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Sarah,

    The scenario you describe seems to indicate a denial, but I can’t be sure.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Jean,

    If you applied for both Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and childhood disability benefits (CDB) for your son on your earnings record, he, if medically approved, will be paid SSI first and then CDB second. Once the CDB starts, the SSI will be reduced or stopped depending on the amount of the CDB.

    It is correct that any CDB paid to your son will not affect the amount of your benefits. If your earnings record allows a 50% auxiliary benefit, the CDB could be up to that amount.

    Processing times vary from office to office and sometimes Supplemental Security Income (SSI) payment is processed quickly, within less than a month of medical approval, and other times it will be more than a month. It can take one to two months after SSI is paid for Security Disability benefits (SSDI) to start and sometimes as much as a couple months longer to get the SSDI back pay. Factors such as offsets and amount of back pay affect how long it takes the payment center to issue SSDI payments.

    If the SSI back pay exceeds $2,205, it will be paid in three installments six months apart. You should get the first installment less than a month from the first monthly payment. SSDI back benefits will be reduced by the amount of SSI back benefits paid (or due in installment) for the months in which SSDI and SSI eligibility overlap. Note that if after your Social Security starts you are no longer eligible for SSI, you can request the remaining SSI installments to be released.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Don,

    I replied suggesting that you follow up with the examiner.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Naomi,

    DDS stands for Disability Determination Services. I do not know what DAS stands for.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Jennifer,

    The status may indicate that your husband has been approved. I suggest that your husband call the local office to see whether they can tell him.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Think Line,

    It is possible that the status is an indication that your claim has been medically approved. It depends on how the status is worded.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Penny,

    There is no good explanation for why your claim was not sent to the Disability Determination Services right after all the application papers were completed.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Lashenda,

    How long you will wait for benefits depends on how busy the office is and how many months of benefits have to be calculated for back pay. The wait could be a couple weeks or a month or more.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear XxXxXxXx,

    I can’t predict for sure how long it will take to get an appointment, but I’ll take a guess of a month. The decision after that could be within a few weeks or a month or two more. It will depend on the workload in the Disability Determination Services at the time.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Cheryl,

    The last status may be an indication that your claim has been medically approved. Try calling the local office to find out.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Conbo2,

    The notice of January 26 is an indication that your claim has been denied.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear California Dreamin’

    A call from the local office after notification that a decision has been made could be an indication of approval.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Naomi,

    The only thing I can think of is that your son’s claim was randomly selected for a quality assurance (QA) review and that the review resulted in the claim being sent back to the DDS for more investigation. I suggest calling the examiner at DDS to try to get a more specific information about the status.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Stephanie,

    Social Security is an earned benefit paid for with Social Security (FICA) taxes on wages. Supplemental Security Income (SSI), is a federal needs-based welfare program. So, yes, you can be denied for having income or assets too high for SSI eligibility and still be eligible for Social Security.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Corine,

    The information you received doesn’t really give a clue as to what the decision will be. It sounds as if it is the consulting physician who needs to redo the form.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Jesse,

    Yes, the invitation to apply for your child means you have been approved for Social Security benefits.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Star,

    I wouldn’t expect an approval so quickly–five days after the claim arriving at the DDS; however, if the condition is severe and the medical documentation is very clear, it is possible. Otherwise, the local office was just routinely following up on information previously requested on the application.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Don,

    The processing of your claim is far outside the norm. I suggest calling the examiner again. If you do not get a sense that the claim is moving along toward a decision, I suggest that you contact your congressperson’s office to request that they follow up for you.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Heather,

    I’d say that the judge wrote a quick approval and currently the appeal is in letter writing for the decision letter to be prepared. I suggest that your husband call the hearing office. He will not be told the decision, but they will say if it is in letter writing. f your husband’s appeal is denied, the judge’s not using the vocational expert could be grounds for an appeal.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear N Lockett,

    This status is just telling you that the DDS has your claim and is reviewing it.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Your claim decision could be an approval and the letter will be requesting additional information about the non-medical aspects of your claim or it could a denial and the letter a denial letter.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • You are welcome, Kimberly.

  • Dear Corine,

    It’s possible that the decision has been made and the online status has not been updated. Hopefully, you got your decision in time to be of help.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Kimberly,

    It is good that the claim is now being actively worked and that the examiner wants your child’s records to consider.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Stressed Out,

    From what you have written, I understand that your husband’s Social Security Disability (SSD aka SSDI) claim was denied because he either did not have enough work earnings to be insured or could not prove disability for an earlier date when he was insured. Your reference to filing amended tax returns to prove earnings seems to indicate that your husband was self-employed and that you believe that with those years of work, your husband would have been insured.My response is based on those assumptions.

    If the denial occurred in the last sixty days, you can file a request for reconsideration and file the 1040X returns and submit copies to support the appeal. If the decision was more than sixty days ago, then you might be able to get a reopening based on correcting the earnings record or depending how all the dates fell, you might be able to file a new claim on behalf of your deceased husband. Whether anything other than an appeal in the appeals period would be successful depends very much on the facts, especially the dates. Another consideration is that there may be a limit on filing amended returns, so I recommend that you first check with the IRS about whether the years in question are open to amendment.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear James,

    The phrase “working to process your benefit application” may be an indication of approval. If it has been ten days since the date the status was posted, I suggest that you get in touch with your local office to confirm the status and if your claim was approved to provide any information needed for payment to be issued.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Jennifer,

    It would appear that the status was not updated. If your husband received an approval letter, there is no need to watch the status with the regard to the medical decision.

    How long it will take to receive benefits depends on whether the approval was for Social Security Disability (SSD aka SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) or both. SSI processing times vary from local office to local office. It can be around three weeks to a month or more. Sometimes Supplemental Security Income (SSI) payments are processed quickly and other times not, while factors such as offsets and amount of back pay affect how long it takes the payment center to issue SSDI payments, so that processing times run from a month to two months or more.

    If your husband was approved for both SSI and SSDI, the SSI will be paid first. The time frames given above will begin after SSI has been processed. SSDI back benefits will be reduced by the amount of SSI back benefits paid or due for the months in which SSDI and SSI eligibility overlap.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Dave,

    The last notice indicates that your claim was transferred to the Disability Determination Services (DDS) from the local office. New claims usually take from two to five months to process. Given the amount of time that has passed, I suggest that you call the DDS and speak to the examiner. Inquire whether they are waiting for anything from your medical providers. If so, you can follow up to get it submitted. If not, you can inquire whether they can give you a ballpark date when you will get a decision.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Linda,

    Yes, your husband has been medically approved.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Claudia,

    If you have not heard anything from the local office about your SSI within about ten days of getting the medical approval, I suggest that you contact the office for an appointment to submit whatever is needed to get benefits started. At that time, you can also ask when you can finish the application for the children. (If you listed them on your application, your application is a protective filing for them.)

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Sassy,

    It is common to have to pay some of the attorney’s out of pocket costs.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Mansion Maid,

    Good question. The online application is the basic application form without the medical or vocational forms or the authorization for SSA to gather information. You can either wait to have them requested or you can download them from the Internet and get started on them now. Once completed, they can be submitted to the local office for association with the basic claim form. (Keep a copy!) The forms can be found at
    https://www.ssa.gov/forms/ssa-3368.pdf
    https://www.ssa.gov/forms/ssa-3369.pdf
    https://www.ssa.gov/forms/ssa-827.pdf

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Tammy,

    Apparently, your husband’s earnings record shows that he was insured for Social Security Disability (SSD aka SSDI) through March 31, 2015. The denial letter is not necessarily saying he does not have the diagnoses. The claim was denied for lack of evidence that he was disabled by that date. I suggest that your husband request a copy of his claim file to see the exact reasons for the denial and the evidence it is based on. That will help him decide whether to appeal and if so what issues to address. If your husband also applied for Supplemental Security Income (SSI), that claim could still be pending or be approved based on your husband’s current medical condition.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Lynn,

    The decision could be an approval or a denial. The status should be updated with the decision before long.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • You are welcome, Bruce.

  • Dear H.

    Yes, I did see it and posted it.

    Thank you,
    Kay

  • Dear Misty,

    I assume you would like to know the meaning of the status report. It is telling you that you will soon get the decision communicated to you. Keep watching the status reports because it won’t be long before the decision will be posted.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Sandra,

    Perhaps the system was being updated or your status was being updated at the time you checked. I suggest that you check again.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Sassy Wife,

    People are reporting updates with either an approval or denial within about a week or a little more of the status you quote.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Lauren,

    Decisions are not supposed to be given out over the phone. I think that “good rating” was the examiner’s code for approved.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Claudia,

    It is possible that your claim is being medically approved. Several people who have received this notice have subsequently been approved. Keep checking online because before long the status will change giving you the decision before you receive a letter.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Michele,

    The claim status would appear to refer to a Social Security Disability (SSD aka SSDI) claim, not to your Supplemental Security Income (SSI) claim which will be denied. It is possible to be denied SSI for financial reasons and still qualify for SSDI.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Lisa,

    The claim status indicates that a decision has not been made. Medical decisions on new claims take from two to five months. You can call the claims examiner at the Disability Determination Services (DDS) to ask whether they are waiting for anything from your physicians. If so, you can follow up to get it submitted.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Brenda,

    It is typical for benefit estimates to unavailable while a claim is being processed.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Kanesmama,

    The status is good in that a decision has been made and you will get a letter soon. There is no way to tell from the status report that whether the appeal was approved or denied.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Ebonie,

    You will receive your first monthly Social Security Disability (SSD aka SSDI) as much as two months after your got your Supplemental Security Income (SSI) back pay. SSD back pay has in many cases been taking another couple of months after the monthly SSD starts. Your SSDI back pay will be reduced by SSI benefits paid for the same months.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Bruce,

    Some people who see this language are approved for benefits, but I still have not gotten information to rule out that the decision could also be a denial. You should get notification soon.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Teeperry,

    I recommend that you call Social Security and ask for an explanation if the file was sent back to the local office more than a week ago. If it was less time than that, you might have called when the file was in transit and not yet updated in the computers. If that is the case you should either be notified of the decision or asked to provide more information.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Naomi,

    If the request for reconsideration is denied, the next level of appeal is a request for hearing.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Victoria,

    If you are unable to perform prior occupations, your age is considered in the context of determining your ability to undertake a new occupation that you have not performed previously.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Lois,

    The online status is telling you that no medical decision has been made on your claim. Typical processing time runs two to five months, so I suggest you call to find out if anything is needed from you or your physicians for a decision to be made. If not, inquire whether you can be given a rough estimate of when the review will be completed. The polite inquiry may move your claim along into active review, but no guarantee, of course.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Felecia,

    You may meet the disability criteria. I suggest that you file a claim. Tips on filing claims can be found in the articles in the drop-down menu beneath the “Apply SSD” tab at the top of this webpage.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Kevin,

    Thank you for letting us know. Unless the local office asks for information from you, your next step is to wait for benefits to be calculated and authorized, which can take a couple months.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Kevin,

    Your claim has either been approved or denied medically, and action is being taken to get a letter out to you or in the case of an approval to move your claim toward authorization of payment. The last sentence of the status seems to imply an approval, but I have not yet gotten confirmation of that. Please let us know what your decision is and reference this online language when you do.

    Thank you,
    Kay

  • Dear Kevin,

    A medical decision has been made on your claim and full processing of your claim including non-medical factors is in progress now. The reference to possible requests for information could mean that the medical decision was an approval. If your claim is denied, please let me know.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Fran,

    Yes, you will get a letter with appeal rights.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Traci,

    Please post the information you are referring to and I will respond.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Corine,

    Typically processing times run between two and five months. You are at the six month mark now and it sounds as if everything requested is in and that maybe you will have a decision fairly soon, possibly within a month.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • You are welcome, Jimmy.

  • Dear Paula,

    I suggest that you request a copy of your claim file, which will have a more detailed decision memo, and review the file with an experienced Social Security attorney to get an opinion on whether or not you might meet the disability requirements and, thus, should appeal.

    Most attorneys will provide a free consultation and 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 the attorney can charge and the Social Security Administration pays the attorney directly from your back pay.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Jim,

    I anticipate that your claim has been denied. You should be getting the letter within a week. If it is a denial, I suggest that you request a copy of the claim file to see the exact reasons for the denial and what evidence was in file. That will help you decide whether or not to appeal and, if you appeal, will give you information to address in the appeal.

    If you do have to appeal, I suggest that you hire an experienced Social Security attorney to assist 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 the attorney can charge and the Social Security Administration pays the attorney directly from your back pay.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Keyonna,

    Errors can be made, but you should have been issued a card only if you were approved. I suggest that you call Social Security to confirm your status.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear DJ,

    I am still working on getting an explanation of each of the new online status reports to be able to respond with assurance. Unless your SSI claim has been denied for non-medical factors, the SSI denial referenced is a medical denial and two possibilities exist: The Social Security claim has been denied and there is a lag time in updating the status online or you will receive a partially favorable decision with benefits paid for a closed (limited) period of time ending before you filed your SSI claim, which has no retroactivity.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Stressed Out,

    I do not know the statistics on percentages of approvals and denials that selected for quality assurance reviews.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Fran,

    The online status means that final actions are being taken to get the claim decision to you after the medical decision has been made. The last sentence may indicate that the decision was an approval. Please let us know if your claim is denied instead of approved.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Sheila,

    I am not sure what your question is, but based on the information you have given, I’d say that you have a good chance for approval.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear StressedOut,

    I think that your claim was randomly selected for a quality assurance review after a decision was made. The decision could be an approval or denial and could be upheld or returned for further investigation or correction. Apparently, the claims examiner favored your treating physician’s report and that is good.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear William,

    Thank you for sharing your outcome. Others have indicated approvals, so that particular online status does not reveal the decision.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Phillip,

    Social Security changed the language of its online status reports last month. The last sentence of your most recent status may indicate that your claim has been approved. Please let me know what the decision is on your claim, especially if the claim is denied.

    Thank you,
    Kay

  • Dear Shell,

    Your claim has been randomly selected for a quality assurance (QA) review to see whether the decision was correctly arrived at. The decision could be either an approval or a denial. The QA review could agree with the decision, overturn it or send it back to the examiner for more investigation. I don’t know whether the representative was just trying to be nice or was trying to send you a signal that the initial decision pending QA was an approval.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Paula,

    A medical decision has been made and you will either be sent a denial letter or your claim will move to the payment center for Social Security authorization for payment and/or to your local Social Security office for a financial eligibility review and authorization of payment.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear July,

    Your prior question and my answer have been posted. If the new system is to remove all status remarks when the claim has been denied and the letter has been sent, then it is possible that your SSDI claim has been denied. (It would take longer to complete a claim to payment.) If the SSDI has been denied, the SSI will be medically denied unless the SSDI was denied because medical evidence showed you are disabled now but not while you were still insured for SSDI.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Julie,

    The status is just telling you that a medical decision has been made. It can be either an approval or a denial. If it is a denial, you will receive a letter; if it is an approval, the application will be reviewed again for non-medical eligibility factors and for payment to be authorized.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Thank you, Henry.

    It is good to know that “medical decision made” and “benefit application being processed” just means that the medical decision has been made and the decision could be either an approval or a denial.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Deb,

    If the posting are correct, either a denial letter was lost in the mail or your SSDI claim is in the payment center awaiting processing to payment. I suggest that you call Social Security and ask them to check on the correct status of the claim. If the call center at 1-800-772-1213 cannot help you, go to your local office.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Shelly,

    Yes, the language is so general that it is ambiguous. We now know from reported experience that the “your benefit application is being process” can mean a denial. Also posting to each system seems to take different lengths of time.

    Sincerely,
    Kay

  • Dear Summer,

    When I answer questions, I do not see the whole thread of conversation; so for me to be able to respond, please tell me what you are referring to when you say “mine says the same thing.” Also, did you apply for SSI or Social Security?

    Thank you,
    Kay

  • Roy

    Hello Kay, Thanks for your site. My wife and I have learned a lot from reading the posts.
    My question relates to waiting time. I am a veteran, rated as 100% permanently and totally disabled, without PTSD, But I deployed 6 times to war and have two bronze stars. I don’t think there will be an issue with the disabilities issue.

    I was told to inform SSA that I was 100% P&T by the VA. When I called to make my appointment to file my application I did and was told expediting was getting an appointment within the week, by the SSA representative I made the appointment with. The rep who took my claim said she listed my claim as 100 P&T%.

    What does this really mean. I was told at the SSA office it will still be 6 months before I hear anything. I read that the SSA now has access to VA records and that they must take VA disability finding as certification of a condition but not as determination of severity. There are comments here and there that identified applications will be expedited in all processes.

    I think that beyond the initial claim all things should be kind of equal. Because the VA determination has already completed a lot of the leg work and it should make things easier for the DDS rater. Maybe only needing updated records.

    So, what does expedited application really mean.

    Thanks for all you do.

    • Dear Roy,

      Your claim should be processed more quickly in the Disability Determination Services (DDS) than one that is not tagged for expediting; however, all processing times vary a great deal around the country depending on how busy each locale is. As far as being told that you would wait six months for a decision, either the representative is not familiar with the procedure of DDS expediting of 100% disabled vets or six months is faster than normal for your geographic area.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Sharon J.

    Hello Kay, after waiting 14 months a decision was made on my case on 12/6/2016. I am now seeing my estimated benefits back on my account. During the pending process I couldn’t see it. So from what I am reading this is a denial of claim when they put the estimated benefit amount back up there and not show a monthly payment amount correct? Please help and explain it.

    Thank you for all you do!

    Sharon J.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Sharon,

      Yes, in approvals typically the status remains pending until payment has been calculated and posted and in medical denials, the estimated earnings show again. If you experience something different please let me know.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Sharon J.

    Hi Kay, Okay the Medical Reviewer needed more information and sent me to a Doctor for a complete physical and x-ray of my hip. I went on 11/8/2016. My Examiner called me on 11/15/2016 and asked if I kept the appt? I told her yes, she said as soon as they get the x-ray and review back from the Social Security Doctor, I should hear something. I just checked the SS website It now says, we are sorry but we can not provide an application status at this time and to check back later. Is that good or bad? At first it just said “a decision has not been made yet”. Is it normal for the Disability Examiner to follow up and call if it looks like I will be denied? I am still thinking positive approval. It has been 14 months now since I became disable. They even paid for my mileage on this Doctor visit this time. I appreciate all of your help!

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Sharon,

      The call from the examiner is routine. I would expect you to have to wait a month or more after the examination to get a decision, partially because the examiner can take up to three weeks to submit the report. I don’t know the exact meaning of the online message; possibly the site was being updated or was between updates. However, the “non-information” does tell you that you have an application, which means it is still pending.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Michelle

    What does it mean when your status says:

    Benefit Application Under Review

    A medical decision has been made and we are working to process your benefit application. A Social Security Representative may contact you directly if we need any additional documents or information

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Michelle,

      The status is likely an indication that your claim has been medically approved. It appears Social Security has recently upgraded the language in the status entries to be much clearer.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Shelly

        Mine said the same thing…then very next day it was gone and said your claim has been denied..ugh..still waitg for letter in mail..that new wording is very misleading

    • Julie

      Does this apply in PA as well?

      • Kay Derochie

        Dear Julie,

        I cannot see where you posted your comment until after it is answered and then it requires a search to locate it. Could you please tell me what you are referring to so I can respond to you.

        Thanks,
        Kay

      • Adriene Odom

        I recieve SSD and my husband applied right after I did he was denied several times and he appealed it all the way to the actual hearing to appear before a judge we logged on to his claim and it’s saying processing I’ve never seen that before what does it mean?

        • Dear Adriene,

          Some aspect of the appeal is being processed. I suggest that your husband call the hearing office to get a more specific status report.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

    • Dear Michelle,

      The last sentence appears to be an indication that the medical decision on your claim was favorable. If the decision is otherwise, please let me know.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Donna Gallup

    Do you know how long it will take to receive the work credit approval after receiving the medical approval for Disability SS?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Donna,

      It seems to be running anywhere from a month to two months or more for the final review of work credits and authorization for payment.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Dear Kay I filed for SSDI and SSI on August 8th, I have faxed tons of medical records and emergency room visits, I was diagnosed with chronic heart failure, Proximal AFib, eessential Hypertension, syncope, Morbid Obesity Obstructive Sleep Apnea and Hypothyroidism. On the 18th of November I faxed updated medical records, two weeks ago I called to check my status and was told to call back on December 9th if I did not get a payment or a letter in the mail. Today I got a phone call from social security asking me if I had recently been to a cardiologist and I told them yes I had seen a specialist on the 18th of November, she then ask for his name and phone number then told me she needed medical records from him and she was sending me something in the mail to sign. Help what is going on?

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Eric,

          The claims examiner is still reviewing your claim to determine whether you meet the medical requirement to be considered disabled. She apparently wants the recent records to help in that determination, or she could have determined that you became disabled and she is trying to determine whether you still are.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  • Dear Mr Kay ,

    Please help me what the meaning of this message

    A decision has been made on your claim. You will receive the official notice of any decision made on your claim by U.S. mail.

    Thanks

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Abdullah,

      The message says that you will get a letter in the mail telling you whether your claim has been approved or denied.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Lisa

        Hi Kay, Had court on oct. 3rd been checking ssa site and it changed yesterday to this,”Appeal Under Review

        A medical decision has been made and we are working to process your decision. A Social Security Representative may contact you or your appointed representative directly if we need any additional documents or information.” Is that bad? Also I get ssd under my husband and that is saying under review too?

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Lisa,

          I would say that your Social Security Disability (SSD aka SSDI) claim has been medically approved and that your SSD non-medical eligibility factors and being reviewed and your SSD benefit calculated. Because you will be paid SSD, your spouse’s benefit will be either reduced or terminated depending on whether your SSD is less or more than your spouse’s benefit.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  • Tonya

    How long does it take for the ssa office to calculate benefits after the dds office approves the case?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Tonya,

      It takes a month or two or sometimes longer for you to receive a Social Security award letter with calculations. If you were approved for Supplemental Security benefits (SSI), benefits are more likely to be calculated and paid within a month to six weeks.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Corine G Smith

    Dear Kay,
    I’m 44 and have been diagnosed with Primary Sjogrens(bluebook), Fibromylagia(bluebook), chronic pancreatitis, neuropathy, chronic fatigue and all the symptoms associated with these diseases as well as the medications. In December 2014, I finally recieved a diagnosis. By, Jan. 2015 I was out on medical leave. I have been out since then and have gotten progressively worse. I applied for social security June 26th, 2016. A couple weeks later I was daily activities forms as well as my husband. WHEN I applied online, I went into the ss office to bring in some medical records, physican note, labs with positive results and my physicia forms that were completed for Sedgwick and Broadspire. I also sent lists of all treating physician, their info as well as specialty and what the treated. I went to 2 CE on Oct. 18 (internist) & Oct. 28 (memory & depression). The Internist focused on the pancreatitis and at the end told me, god bless you. I worked as a surgical tech then in medical staff at a wold renowned medical teaching facility, who also diagnosed and treated me. How do my chances look?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Corine,

      Based on how you describe your illnesses, I would say that you have a reasonable chance for approval. I can’t predict whether your claim has been approved or not. If you are denied, I suggest that you request a copy of your claim file to review the exact reasons for the denial and the evidence on which the decision was based. This information will be helpful in preparing an appeal

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • ron widman

        Dear Kay, in 50 years old, done hard labor all my life, over 30 years, I’ve been diagnosed with DDD in 3 discs in my neck, foraminal stenos in my neck, arthritis neck, back, hips, carpol tunnel in both hands, emphysema, and nerves in my neck are narrowing, bone spurs too, i filed for disability, lost 2 jobs over my condition, 10th grade education, i checked my status, it said they were reviewing medical records, I called a couple days later, they said they were processing my medical records, what exactly does that mean, I filed in July of 2016. Been happening since 2004

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Ron,

          Both phrases, “reviewing medical records” and “processing medical records” mean the same thing. All the documentation that you submitted and that has been collected is being looked over to determine whether you are disabled according to Social Security law. Given your work history and age, if you are unable to perform past occupations, you claim is likely to be approved.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  • Tonya

    If i am approved tomorrow is there a chance i can receive benefits before the new year? I am freaking out because i have bills and taxes due.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Tonya,

      If you are approved soon, there is a chance of receiving benefits this year.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • About how much longer would a ssdi initial claim decision be made and mailed out if psych ce done 10/17, received by dds 10/22, and examiner has sent entire file to dds doctors to review medical and psych portion? Could a decision show up this week? Examiner states he is trying to move it along since applying in 6/2016.

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Stressed Out,

          I would think that you would get a decision within a month from now, but there are no guarantees.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

          • Thanks. Also, when checking the ssa.gov website for application status when a decision is made by the disability determination services how long after that will the results changed from “the dds is currently reviewing the medical portion of your claim” to an approval/denial? Will it say approved or denied or what

            • Kay Derochie

              Dear Stressed Out,

              I don’t know how much lag time there is between the DDS completing the review and the online status being changed. A medical approval does not result in an immediate claim approval. For Social Security Disability (SSDI), the program center double checks insured status and completes authorization for payment before the approval is finalized; that can take a month or two. For Supplemental Security Income (SSI), the local office reviews your income, assets, and living arrangements for all months before authorizing payment and finalizing the approval. That usually occurs within about a month after the favorable medical decision.

              Sincerely,
              Kay

              • But will anything show up differently on the online status check page of the ssa.gov website? Right now it just shows “reviewing medical portion of your claim.” What possible messages would show up when a decision is made on that page?

                • Kay Derochie

                  Dear Stressed Out,

                  I do not know what the next online posting will be. When it changes, you will know the medical decision has been made. If the meaning of the annotation at that time is not clear to you (medical approval or denial), I suggest you contact your local office for clarification.

                  Sincerely,
                  Kay

        • What if the psych consultative exam gives a bad review but all of the treating physicians for medical and psych sent in a review in favor of disability approval? Will the DDS favor the CE results more than all of the treating physicians who have seen me longer?I was hurting really bad when he did my exam and I told him but he didn’t list that in his report. I couldn’t focus or remember well. He used the classic word “malingering” but I wasn’t. Should I expect a denial on my initial claim because of this?

          • Kay Derochie

            Dear Stressed Out,

            Your own doctors’ opinions are supposed to be given as much credence as the consulting physician’s report. However, your doctors have to explain the basis for their opinions, such as test results or clinical examinations. If they don’t, the opinions will not carry as much weight.

            If you are denied and you really believe you cannot work, I suggest requesting a copy of your claim file to see the exact reasons for the denial and the evidence in file on which the denial was based. Also, I recommend hiring an experienced Social Security attorney to assist with your appeal. When you hire a Social Security attorney, you do not have to pay any legal fees up front, and you will pay attorney fees only if you are approved for benefits. Social Security law sets the amount your attorney can charge and the Social Security Administration pays the attorney directly from the retroactive award before they send your back pay to you.

            Sincerely,
            Kay

    • Mike B.

      Hello Kay,
      How do I go about sending you a question?

      Thank You,
      Mike

      • Kay Derochie

        Dear Mike,

        Post the question the same way you asked how to post a question.

        Sincerely,
        Kay

  • David

    I just sent a question and it appears to have been deleted.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear David,

      Questions don’t post until they have been answered. Your question is now posted and answered.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • David

    Kay,

    I am a 100% disabled veteran, P&T. Additionally I have an enlarged spleen, my liver is now rated 4 of 4 (told that its pretty bad). I have thrombocytopenia (low blood platlets) as well arthritis in both hands, severe in right. My hearing is 60/40 with 24/7 sever tinnitus. I am 60 and found myselft unable to work anymore. I applied for SSDI benefits in July and during the interview at the SSA Office and I was told that this would be fast tracked at that time. However, it seems obvious at this point that it hasn’t been and now its October. I get the same thing everytime I check the web site indicating that “a decision has not been made pending medical records” .

    I called the NC investigating office as well as SSA office and received that same info but there is nothing showing pending from any physician.

    I am missing something or does it seem that my claim is caught in netherland?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear David,

      I suggest calling the North Carolina Disability Determination Services and ask to speak to the claims examiner. When you do, ask the examiner what remains to be done on your claim and what is a realistic estimate for completion. The call may draw attention to your claim if it has been sitting in a pile of to-do’s.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • J.L.

    I am a veteran with a disability rating of 70 % which was recently increased in Feb 2016 from 30% for PTSD with depression and anxiety due to MST and a DV assault which resulted in other injuries as well. I got a 0% rating for my other injuries, bursitis and tendinitis of my right shoulder and lower back pain. Between my back and shoulder I feel like a 8 of 10 in pain on a daily basis for the past 17-18 years. I’d like to know if I could apply for ssd?

    • J.L.

      Also if ssd rates different than the VA

      • Kay Derochie

        Dear J.L.,

        Social Security Disability (SSD/SSDI) law does not provide for ratings. To be eligible for benefits, a person has to meet the definition of disability. If eligible the amount paid is based on the individual’s work history (work earnings). The definition of disability is the inability to engage in any substantial gainful activity by reason of any medically determinable physical or mental impairment which can be expected to result in death or which has lasted, or can be expected to last, for a continuous period of not less than twelve months.” Currently, substantial gainful activity (SGA) is usually earnings of $1,130. (See my response to your first post.)

        Sincerely,
        Kay

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear J.L.,

      If you are either not working or are working and are earning less than $1,130 gross wages or net self-employment, you can apply for Social Security disability.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • I filed for SSDI on July 6, 2016 and denied on initial application on Oct 3, 2016. Filed for reconsideration on Oct 6, 2016 and called to check claim status Oct 24, 2016 and was told my file was sent to disability review on Oct 12, 2016. I haven’t received notice of approval or denial yet, why would my file be with disability review? I heard that they review my file at the same office just with a different examiner. Not sure what is happening. Was told they had 120 days to respond from the date is was sent to review. Can you explain the process?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Lisa,

      The process you have described is the reconsideration review process, which can take nearly as long as the original claim. If any new evidence comes up before you get a decision, but sure to submit it for consideration.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Meria

    I am 56 years old and have worked for over 34 years continuiously. I have major depression, anxiety, ADHD, osteoarthritis and spinal disorders which have all been documented. The osteo arthritis and spinal disorders were recently found.

    I had planned to start a career after retiring from being a cashier and finished graduate school in 2014 but because of circumstances at my job, I went into a complete downward spiral (diagnosed with PTSD) and am currently on STD. Finished the SSDI application online in July 2016 when I realized there is no way I could work in any office setting or return to my previous job.

    The SSDI status application states that it is processing the medical portion of my claim and a decision hasn’t been made yet. I have filled out the packet sent to me by the DDS for daily activity, and residual function capacity but seldom leave the house except for daily necessities. What are my chances for an approval letter and when? I have been seeing Therapists whenever needed in the past when I was capable of working. However since the PTSD, spinal disorder, osteoarthritis I have been seeing a psychiatrist and Pain management specialist.

    • Meria

      I began STD the beginning of May 2016.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Meria,

      I can’t say for sure whether you are disabled as defined by Social Security. You indicate that you cannot work in an office environment, but you also say you worked for many years as a cashier. If you have the ability to due past work such as cashiering or to work in a new occupation, you will not quality for benefits. All that said, I don’t have sufficient information about your limitations to be able to assess your eligibility.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Meria

        Thank you for your quick response. The XRAYs and MRIs state that I have: (1) possible perched facet joint at C6-C7, (2) DDDat C5 – C6, cervical spondylosis, (4) bilateral neural forminal stenosis at C5-C6 / C7-T1. I also have an annular buldge and mild bilateral degeneration along with spinal stenosis at the L4-L5 level. Not to mention osteoarthritis in my hands. Because of the pain and symptoms, it doesn’t allow me to perform my previous job.

        My files were sent to the Pennsylvania DDS for a decision and they worked along side my state office. Now it tells me that

        As of today’s date, a decision has not been made on your application. The Disability Determination Service in your State is processing the medical portion of your claim.

        • Meria

          I should be qualified as disabled under the Major Depression and Anxiety which halted my dream for a second career. This is going to take a long time to heal… the criteria from the blue book they use which meets the definition od disability, I have.

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Meria,

          As the status report says, your claim is being reviewed for medical eligibility. If you cannot return to any prior occupation, your condition and work history and education will be evaluated to determine whether you are able to work in another different occupation.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

    • Keisha Todd

      Hey, I didnt know how to make a new post but I was born with Brachial and erb’s palsy in my right arm I recently file for ssdi in June 2016 and ssi in September 2016 I called my local office today and they said they are waiting on medical records. How much longer do I have to wait to get a decision? And whats the chances i’ll get approve because my mother said she applied when I was a baby and they said I wasnt disable at the time?

      • Kay Derochie

        Dear Keisha,

        I can’t predict how long it will take for you to get a decision. I suggest that you find out from the claims examiner which records they are waiting for (which doctor covering what dates). Then contact the medical provider to get the records sent. If your conditions are keeping you from working, you will be approved. You might also simultaneously contact your state’s Department of Vocational Rehabilitation to find out whether you qualify for training or job placement for an occupation that is within your limitations.

        Sincerely,
        Kay

        • Antonio McCoy 26 at yahoo.com I wanted to know if I had a case congestive heart failure and I implant ICD

          • Kay Derochie

            Dear Antonio,

            If you are not now working earning $1,130 gross or more and you believe that you cannot do so because of your health, I suggest that you file an application for disability benefits to get a formal determination.

            Sincerely,
            Kay

  • Sharon J.

    Hi Kay – I became disable Oct 2015, I filed for SSDI Jan 2016. I went to the CE April 2016. Since then, I have had an heart attack, been to a psychiatrist for depression, etc. All of my Doctor notes has been sent in to my Disability Examiner. I call her about once a week and was told that they have all the records they need. I did a physical job as a truck driver for the last 10 years, after breaking my hip, I can no longer do the physical job or work. I just turned 54 years old. When I called today, I was told that my claim went to the Medical Reviewer and he just sent it back to my case worker, but it still shows “pending no decision has been made”. At least I have not received a denial letter. I’m praying I will be approved. What does all of this mean and how much longer do you think I have before a decision is made? Also, what will be my onset date be if I became disable Oct 2015 but didn’t file until Jan 2016?

    Thank you for all you do!

    Sharon J.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Sharon,

      Your claim is moving closer to your getting a decision. Unless the medical reviewer recommended getting more information, I would think you’d have a decision in a couple weeks. If the Social Security Administration finds that you became disabled in October 2015 as you have claimed, your onset will be October 2015 and benefits will begin to accrue April 2016 after the unpaid five-month benefit waiting period.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Sharon J.

        Thank you Kay for your quick response. I called back today to check on my claim. I was told that it went back to the Medical Reviewer on 10/13 from my disability examiner. Does it normally take him a long time to finalize claims? Also, how does the return to work attempt work? I have been disable now for a year, just waiting on a decision. Can I go back to light duty before I am approved or if I go back before I get an approval, will they deny me right away when they see that I am working a few hours to make ends met with the long process that it’s taking.

        Thank you!
        Sharon J

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Sharon,

          How long it will take to finalize your decision depends on the workload in the Disability Determination Services and, therefore, cannot be predicted. Because you have been disabled twelve months (assuming that your alleged date of disability is accepted), the unsuccessful work attempt provision would not come into play. If you earn as much as $810 gross a month, the month will count as one of the nine Trial Work Period (TWP) months during which full benefits are payable. If you stay under $810, you have to report your work, but you will not use up a TWP month. It is unlikely that a small amount of work would affect the outcome of your claim and it would not cause a reopening of a favorable decision.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

          • Sharon J.

            Kay,

            You are wonderful and so helpful!
            Thank you so much…..

            Sharon J.

            • Kay Derochie

              You are welcome, Sharon.

  • Lyla

    My daughter was listed as a third party contact on my original Disability application in June. She completed her own set of paperwork which came at the same time as mine. The problem is, our relationship has eroded over the last couple of months, since finding out she is involved with heroin/heroin users. She abruptly moved out of the home last week, leaving me without the support person she had been until that time. Child Services may have to get involved regarding my grandson. Can I remove my daughter as a third party contact based on this? Will someone be calling her even though she already completed paperwork months ago? I could have listed my elderly father who is also in the home but he cannot hear well at all, especially on the phone. Thank you

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Lyla,

      I think by “third-party contact” you mean your daughter applied to be your representative payee, the person who will receive your benefits, pay your bills, and conduct business with Social Security on your behalf. If so, I suggest that you and your elderly father go to Social Security right away for him to apply to be your payee. He can ask the representative you speak with to speak slowly and loudly, especially slowly. Hopefully, that will help enough that he will be able to file as your payee. Explain that you want the change because you have discovered your daughter is using heroin and she has moved out of the home. (Note that Social Security has a TTY number for the hearing impaired if a phone call is needed.)

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Trisha

    Hi Kay,
    I posted a question on the 27th. It was here immediately after I submitted…now can’t find it!
    I wanted to update my post. Had my hearing the 28th. Judge approved me as of 1-1-13 and stated he was flagging it for “fast track” to get me my benefits as quickly as possible. My question now is…any idea on how “fast” this designation of claim can be?
    Respectfully awaiting an answer,
    Trisha

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Trisha,

      Your question and my reply have been posted. Within the hearing office, I’d say that “fast tracked” would mean a month. After you get an approval letter, it can take a month or six weeks to get Supplemental Security Income (SSI) started or two months to get Social Security Disability (SSDI) started and longer if you have both SSI and SSDI.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Trisha

        Thank you Kay!!

        • Kay Derochie

          You are welcome, Trisha.

          • Pat

            Wat is wait in ny for hearing after initial denial

            • Kay Derochie

              Dear Pat,

              The average wait time is listed as twenty to twenty-one months.

              Sincerely,
              Kay

  • Aris

    Hi Kay,

    I had my hearing on August1,2016 and it is almost 60 days with no answer. I called and was told the judge had already ruled 2 weeks after my hearing and it had to be typed up by a writer. I was told by a former dds worker that denials come pretty fast because I have to appeal within 60 days. What does that mean? 60 from the date of the hearing or from when the letter was mailed out? When they say denial letters are sent quickly how quick are we talking about ?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Aris,

      The appeals period is sixty-five days from the date on the letter (sixty to appeal plus file for mailing time. Judges sometimes make approval decisions as quickly as denials, so there’s no way to know at this point what the judge’s decision will be.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Trisha

    Hello Kay,

    Let me start by thanking you for your time. This is my first post here. Original application filed April 2015. After being denied and filing appeals I requested a hearing this past January. Hoping for your opinion of possible result..I wasn’t expecting a hearing to be scheduled until sometime next spring/summer. Per the current averages posted for odar office I’m assigned to. For some reason my claim was expedited and video hearing is tomorrow. Curious if there was an “on the record review” or “attorney advisor review” of my file. No reason was given as to why I was given a hearing date after only 5 months since putting in my request. Truly happy here regardless of the reason behind expediting. Having no assistance with my application (long story) while going through my file I saw that I was found to have two severe listings and one non severe. While researching the codes found in my file I saw that the two medical experts who did the medical portion overstated my abilities with my two denials as well as being the wrong type doctor for my severe orthopedic disabilities. Also found numerous clerical errors and erroneous statements made by field officer who did my initial application over the phone. I had very little to submit other than the required forms, a letter written by me after first denial and archived medical documents that are old (10years).
    I will be 49 in October, cannot walk without use of a cane (should use walker or scooter but I cannot afford either) and holding on to something due falling so often. Had to quit driving because of not being able to feel when attempting to push gas or break pedals…the list goes on..
    I therefore, as the SS guidelines showed for disabilities at the age group 45-49, should have been approved instantly, although, of the 4 requirements, three of which I met, the fourth shut me out of that category stating I could do some other kind of work since I can understand and speak English while also having higher education (GED and some college).
    The constant pain and suffering (anxiety/depression) I deal with have gone untreated for years. We have had major financial difficulties since going through our savings following horrific vehicle fire (2006) in which my already disabled leg was badly burned with the addition of a new injury to knee. The treating physician told me I should not go back to work after my burns healed and should instead file for ssdi. Although, that became glaringly impossible very quickly. You see the fire was a blessing in disguise as it led doctors to discover my husband had cancer..his treatment and subsequent illnesses necessitating the need for me to go back to work regardless of my disability (2007) having to choose paying bills and feeding my family/children, at the time 3 and 1 years old, instead of going to the doctor. In order to do this I had to ask for an orthotic prescription and then began wearing a custom made titanium leg brace to help me in my massage therapy practice as I couldn’t stand up from a sitting position let alone stand for long or walk very far. Sadly, my main severe listing cannot/will not ever get treated (irreparable) as I had a failed Hauser procedure done to my right knee in 1994, with two previous arthroscopic surgeries before that as well as an attempt to correct the damage done by the Hauser in 1995. My tibia/knee is deformed as well as breaking down. Orthopedics don’t want to even talk to me let alone try to help. Especially when they discover I’m totally broke and have no insurance for surgery to address my other severe issues to hip and back caused by numerous falls over the years. Forgive the lengthiness of this narrative…I’m a bit anxious and stressed as are so many others who go through this process.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Trisha,

      It is possible the judge or attorney staff reviewed your claim thinking it might be approvable without a hearing and decided additional information from you, a medical specialist and/or a vocational specialist is needed before a decision can be made. Maybe the review resulted in an early hearing date. When you look at the listings, be sure to review the findings that must accompany the diagnosis for the diagnosis to meet the listing and to be disabling without consideration of vocational factors.

      Note that open enrollment for insurance under the Affordable Care Act starts in November. I suggest that you investigate possible eligibility. More information is available at http://www.heathcare.gov

      Sincerely,
      Kay

    • I applied for ssi and ssdi right after i had neck surgery like how long do i have to wait too see if i get approved.

      • Kay Derochie

        Dear Timothy,

        New claims take two to five months to process. You may be contacted to provide additional information while the claim is pending.

        Sincerely,
        Kay

  • Lisa A Yates

    I have worked continuous for 28 years I have had problems breathing since last year, I have had pneumonia 7 times in the past year, my Dr sent me for a Copd test I have moderately severe Copd , she told me to change my profession or disability, I’m 46 years old went to the 8th grade of school nursing is all I know , should I apply for ssi

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Lisa,

      I suggest that you both apply for Social Security Disability and apply for services with your state’s Department of Vocational Rehabilitation to see whether you can be trained to work in another occupation within the restrictions that you have. If you can’t be retrained, it will help your claim; and if you can be trained, the training will help you get a job in the event that you are denied Social Security because you are able to work in another occupation.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Randy Brasfield

    I have been awaiting a decision and received the letter that I have been medically disabled from social security “SSI” and I have an appointment to bring proof of address and income. The thing is I got approved for temporary state disability last month and got back pay.. I was approved for 118 per week, will my future payments count towards assets? my last payment date is in December. what would the cash limit be in Los Angeles? would they automatically deny me because i get state disability?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Randy,

      Supplemental Security Income (SSI) payments are calculated on a monthly basis. Income is money or free shelter or food (not counting food stamps or government-subsidized housing received in a month. Your state disability insurance (SDI) will count as income in the months that it was received. This is true of the back pay, too. The federal limit for unearned (non-work) income is below $753. With California’s SSI state supplement, the amount increases to $889 if you are paying for your own shelter and food.

      Social Security also has a resource (countable asset) limit of $3,000 if you are married and living with your spouse or $2,000 if you are single or separated from your spouse. Resources are money and certain things you own that you carry over month to month. Accordingly, any of the back SDI benefits you still have on the first of the money after it is received it will count toward the asset limit. If you are over the asset limit now, when you have spent down to the limit, you can have benefits resumed without a new application as long as you have not been ineligible for twelve months.(Note that giving money away to get below the limit can result in your being ineligible for a time after the money is given away.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • William Reese

    I applied for SS Disability back in April after being medically discharged from the military. It is now 9 Sep, I just visited the office for status and they said it could be 6 more months. Do they really have 12 months to process my claim?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear William,

      The guideline for processing new disability claims is two to five months. Sometimes it takes longer, but it definitely should not be twelve months. If you do not have a decision by the end of September, I suggest that you call the Disability Determination Services (DDS) where your claim is being processed to get a status from the claims examiner. (You can get the number by searching your state’s name and “Disability Determination Services.”) Ask politely whether they have requested any information they have not received, so that you can follow up on getting it submitted. If you are told they have everything they need, ask for a rough estimate of when the review will be completed, mentioning that it has been pending five months.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

    • Sheila

      I have sent the AC a copy of my request for an appeal and relevant documents three times now, all certified mail with return receipt. The first was in November 2015, The second was received in March and the most recent was delivered two days ago. I tracked the mailing and confirmation was given that it was delivered to an agent. To date they are still claiming to not have received it; How is this possible and what kind of game are they playing. I have sought out the assistance from my senator’s office and a caseworker is managing my case but so far this has not resolved any of the issues. I also requested a copy of hearing transcripts back in July and to date have not received anything, not even an acknowledgement of the request. I forwarded a copy of the fax that I sent to the AC having made the request to the senator caseworker. I also mailed a separate copy of the same request to the AC about 1 month ago and even with Congress involved it has not accomplished a resolution to this problem this far.

      • Kay Derochie

        Dear Sheila,

        The only explanation I can think of is that they are so backed up that the requests are not yet logged into their computer system. Appeals Council requests often pend as much as two years before they reviewed, so it is possible that each step in the process is delayed. The congressional office should be able to get some information.

        Sincerely,
        Kay

  • Joe Sherman

    Hello,
    Sorry if this post gets long. Wondering what my chances are at getting approved. (Back issues) all started 22 years ago when I found out I had server scoliosis 49 degree lumbar curve. At the time I had to have surgery on L3 & L5 disc for herniated disc that was pinching nerves, forward a few years ago where i started having reacurring back pain again at which time I had an MRI done. Results = degenerative facet arthropathy, formal stenosis, central canal stenosis, degenerative disc, vertebral body spondylosis, bilateral foraminal canal narrowing, it has got to the point where I can only stand for 10-20 minutes before needing to sit down and then that becomes uncomfortable after about 10 minutes as well at which time I usually need to lay flat on my back in either a bed or floor. I stopped working full time a year ago, I have tried different jobs but can only last a day or two before I’m in so much pain that I am dragging my foot behind me and in tears. 43 year old male. Worked in factory pretty much all my life. Oh I also have type 2 diabetes and high blood pressure. Thanks for reading.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Joe,

      If you have not already filed a disability claim, I suggest that you do so. If you have not had imaging done recently, I suggest you do so to document your current condition. Also see whether you can get a Residual Functional Capacity (RFC) form completed by your physician. Better yet, if you can afford a functional capacities evaluation by a physiatrist, who then completes the RFC, you would have better documentation than just having the form completed based on office visit exams and imaging.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • kathleen

    I was told I have stage 3 non small cell lung cancer.I turned in all my papers to ssi including the biopsy.How long does it take for them to make a decion.I am getting ready to do chemo and radition i hope i can find out if i get it before then.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Kathleen,

      A decision on an initial claim filing can take from two to five months.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Michael Case

    I was just wondering of you could help me. I originaly filed for disability in October of 2010. I suffer from diabetes, nourapathy, sleep apnea, high blood pressure, severe swelling of the legs, chf, copd, obesity, depression, ptsd, anxiety and mild social phobia. I was denied the first tiem went before a law judge and he denied me. I took it to the appeals council and they agreed with the judge. Well i have turned 50 since the judges decision and my attorney said this would help me alot. I didnt graduate i finished 11th grade. I havent really had any jobs that required skills. My dr completed a residual functioning report and stated that i would miss several days of work a month due to my problems. He also stated that i would need to take breaks throughout the day and put my legs up to avoid swelling. He also stated that I had to use a wheelchair to move around and that i couldnt walk withouot getting out of breath. My psycologist stated that i have a GAF score of 45- 50 and he stated in several places that I was not able to work at all and that if I was made to I could become a danger to myself and others. I live alone and my quality of life has gone way down hill since 2009 when I went through a horible divorce. I live alone except for a companion animal. I dont go out except to get grocerys and occasionaly go to my daughters for dinner or to visit. I have become a recluse in my own home. I am on 9 medications and terribly need insurance due to the fact I have been in the hospital every year for the last 4 years. This last time was due to a blood clot in my lungs and 2 days before I was discharged I fell and broke my ankle. I have alot of provblems with mobility, I cant stand for more than a few minutes and I cant walk but maybe 1/4 a block before becoming awfully winded and out of breath. I promise I would rather live a normal life and have a job and people to be around than to lead this lonely life. Do you think I have a chance of getting disability this time around? Any information would be greatly apprieciated. Thank you!!

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Michael,

      Being fifty years old puts you into a different age category with Social Security; so if you file a claim now, you might be approved.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Michael Case

        Thanks Kay!! Im keeping my fingers crossed.

        • Kay Derochie

          You are welcome, Michael.

  • Cecil

    I have multiple myeloma, two stem cell transplants. Currently, taking medication to control the disease. I went back to work after procedures but now I am on short disability because the started a new program to keep the disease under controlled but I am fatigued and now experiencing depression because of everything. What are my chances of being approved?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Cecil,

      You may be eligible for benefits and I recommend that you file a claim. If you returned to work for less than six months, claim your first date off work as your date of disability and list the dates that you returned to work and your medical reason for stopping again. State that the period you returned to work was an unsuccessful work attempt. If you returned to work for more than six months, you will have to claim the second cease work date as your date of disability unless you were off work twelve months or more before the return to work.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Keke

    I applied for ssi for my daughter in april i called the dd office the examiner told me she had made her desion she just waiting for a doctor to sign off on it could that mean a good thing or bad ..please hope me out. Thanks

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Keke,

      All clam decisions have to be finalized. There is no way to know whether the examiner’s recommended decision is an approval or denial.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Keke

        Thanks

        • Kay Derochie

          You are welcome, Keke.

  • Pradeep Donepudi

    I have been diagnosed with multiple sclerosis MS in 2003 in michigan and worked for more than 7 years wih medication after dignosis. I stopped working in 2014 when disease has progressed after issues with my disabilities affecting my work and life and returned to India for good after living and working for about 16 years in US. I have applied for disability benefits in 2015 April from india after a relapse. Claim was denied after 6 months and applied for reconsideration with past medical records and medical reports after returning. Recently in June 2016 i was asked to showup for medical and psychiatry evaluation before consulate selected doctors. I did it with help and the reports are presented to consulate in July 2016. I am not sure how long it takes from here and what should be the steps taken by me based on SSDI decision either ways.Please help me educate and expediteout of country claim processing.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Pradeep,

      You can expect to wait a month to three months for a decision. If you are approved, benefits will be paid a couple months after the medical approval. You may be asked to submit a birth certificate, bank account information for direct deposit, or other documents if you are medically approved. If you are denied, I suggest that you hire an experienced Social Security attorney based in the U.S. to help you with your hearing appeal, which can be held by video teleconference.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Pradeep Donepudi

        Thanks my multiple sclerosis disability application has been approved after 18 months since the date of initial application with one denial at reconsideration with physical and mental tests conducted. My disability income has been deposited in my bank account may be with back pay. I havent received a letter with explanation of the amount deposited yet.
        Thanks and Regards for disability advisor.com which kept my spirits up seeing the replies to many different disabled people going through the process.

        • Kay Derochie

          You are most welcome, Pradeep. You should have the letter within ten days.

          • Monique

            I was told by an administrative law judge on Aug 17th 2016 that I would receive a decision within 60 days. It has been over 60 days. Should I be worried about a denial?

            • Kay Derochie

              Dear Monique,

              How long it takes to get a decision is not an indication of what the decision will be. You might try calling the hearing office to get a status report on the appeal.

              Sincerely,
              Kay

    • Pradeep Donepudi

      Madam,
      As said in my earlier comments my 2014 july 17th disability claim applied in March 2015. I received two amounts from social security on 8/18/16 one lumpsum amount of 40k+ and one monthly payment for 2120. I am assuming lumpsum amount is backpay. But i am not clear on how backpay is calculated. from july 2014 till july 2016. whether lumpsum amount and monthly amount is total family amount including spouse and 2 kids or only for the claimant alone. I have not yet received approval letter or letter with breakup of the amount sent to my indian mailing address yet. Please help me understand how the calculation works.

      • Kay Derochie

        Dear Pradeep,

        I have insufficient information to answer your question, so you will probably have to wait for the approval letter. I can say that if your wife applied for your children, the benefits you received do not include the children’s or your wife’s benefits. If you applied to be payee for the children, the children’s might be included with yours.

        Sincerely,
        Kay

  • Wayne

    I filed back in January for Social Security Disability. I have yet to hear anything. I received additional paper work in March which I had 10 days to return, which I did. I have called the local office and all they will tell me is that it is still being worked on. I ask it they needed additional information and they told me know. It has been almost 9 months and still not answer. The Website just said they are they an not proccess my request at this time to call the local Office which I have… They keep telling me the same thing they are working on it to call back in two weeks, which I do and I am told the same thing again…. Is this normal? Just want an answer.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Wayne,

      I suggest that you ask the local office or the call center at 1-800-772-1213 for the telephone number for the Disability Determination Services (DDS), so you can call the claims examiner who is doing the medical review of your claim to be sure nothing is needed and that the claim has not fallen through the cracks. Be polite, but say that it has been nine months since you filed and five months since their last request. Inquire whether the examiner can give a rough estimate of when the decision will be made. (If you can’t get the number from Social Security, call your state’s Department of Vocational Rehabilitation and ask to speak to the DDS office.)

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Brandy

    I filed for disability in March. Had my phone interview in May. Filled out work papers in June. Had medical exam in July. Called the SSI office today and they have received everything they need. My issue is recurring shoulder dislocations. I can’t raise my right arm straight up, back or make sudden movement with it. It constantly dislocates in my sleep, reaching for something, it’s weak when push, pull or lift heavy things. Not a day goes by that I don’t feel pain and hear cracking noises or feel it shifting inside. It seems like the process is moving quickly. The medical doctor says I definitely have a problem and need surgery. My Orthepedic says even with surgery I would probably still have issues. I’ve been to the hospital about 10 times in the 2 yrs that I’ve had the problem. Plus I was able to put my arm back in the socket myself without going to the ER maybe 12 times.even the lady from the SSI office says the hospital doctors are on my side and that there’s no doubt in her mind that I have a problem. But she not the one that makes the decisions. I know you you can’t give me a definite answer, but do you know of any cases that have been approved for shoulder dislocations?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Brandy,

      You are right; I cannot predict whether you will be approved. The primary questions are whether you can work in some job that would not require full use of your right arm and shoulder and with the pain levels you have and, if you can’t, whether your condition has been or can be expected to be disabling for twelve months.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

    • Tykia Pickard

      I applied for ssi i n March 2016 I have congestive heart failure spinal defect acid reflux high blood pressure asthma will I win my case

      • Kay Derochie

        Dear Tykia,

        Medical conditions exist in different levels of severity. If your medical conditions affect you severely enough that you cannot work, your claim will be approved.

        Sincerely,
        Kay

        • Isabelle hall

          Dear Kat
          Forgive me this is my time. I applied for ssdi on April 2016. I have not worked wversince. I have worked all my life since i was 15 nos i am 52. I have hyperrension heart disease with congestive heart dailuee. Lowwe adema. I have been diognosed with acute asthma. Low potassium thst jas been about 3.2 for the last 18 mosts. Bipolar , manic depression, cushion syndrome, those are just of my main illnesses thst i have jad. I am still waiting and i have cooperated fully with my disabiliry analyst. Do i have a chamxe?
          I can not afford medications, my co pays. I have stated this to my analyst. Sorry nervous. Can you please advise if you i have all i can.

          • Isabelle hall

            Sorry i spelled your name incorrectly. My apology

          • Kay Derochie

            Dear Isabelle,

            You can submit a formal statement of dire need based on not having money for your medication; it might move your claim along a little more rapidly. Also, you might contact the pharmaceutical companies that make your most needed medications to see whether you can receive free medications. Some companies provide free essential medications for a month or two. Also, you might see if you qualify for medication assistance listed at http://www.needymeds.com/

            Sincerely,
            Kay

            • Isabelle hall

              Dear Kay
              Thank you. Do you think I have any chance in winning this. I have trouble sleeping and as well now I have to see a neurologist. Based on brief information and your experience you think I have a chance in winning my case.

              • Kay Derochie

                Dear Isabelle,

                You list several illnesses some of which can have serious symptoms. Based on what you posted, it is possibly that you could be approved, but it will depend on how your conditions limit you, your past work experience, education, and age, and how well your limitations are documented.

                Sincerely,
                Kay

                • Isabelle hall

                  I am 52 yer’s old. I have had same doctors and my documentations are very consistent. I can’t no longer drive because I get panic attacks. I loose time. I no longer can cook bc I almost set the house on hire. I no longer handle money bc I CA not pay bills in a manner thru should get paid. I suffer from chronic fatigue, I sleep a lot, my breathing take a till on met. My palpatations get worse bc my medications have side effets. My adema is so bad my skin cracks. My vision has deteriated immensly. I am not getting better. My blood preassure is constantly high and I can go on and on. I can’t lift my purse bc it is too heavy. I no longer can freely go up and down strais. I crawl like a dog bc my the pain in my muscles are unbearable. I also harm myself when I am really stressed. Jay I can go on and on. I am trying to stick it to the man or take advantage of my country. I just need help and the mney I have put away ad they call it security for time like this. There is nothing more I want to go out their and stand on my bothblegs. I can’t even do that bc I have go use a canr. My potassioum has done a lot of samahe. My credibility is solid. Thank you

                  • Kay Derochie

                    Dear Isabelle,

                    As you describe your limitations, I would expect you to be approved as long as you can document the limitations. Also see my responses to your prior posts, particularly a way to document unsuccessful medication trials.

                    Sincerely,
                    Kay

                • Isabelle hall

                  Dear Kay I am 52 years old. I was a human resources Manger for 20 years. My job was demanding and stressful
                  Long hiurs. I had to make sound decisions and making sure they were accurate. I worked long hours. Now I can not sit down or stand up for no more than 15 minutes top. My muscles ache due to low potassium. I also had lower adema which gers so bad my skin cracks. This can go for days. My mind is foggy. I don’t remember my surroundings names and have a difficult time keeping up with anything. I no longer handle finances . I need a care taker to help me take shower and just notarial duries. I am too weak. I can’t get up . I sleep 12 hours or more. I have more bad days than good. My asthma is weveew. I am constantly on prednisone. Or antibiotics. My svt and high bloof pressure has caused my heart get weaker. I have acid reflux and I am seeing a gastrointestinal dpctor. Also I have high levels of enzymes in my lecell and an on going pain on my right side of my lower abdomen that is unbearable at times. I haven’t gotten better in the past 16 minutes . Mentally I have deteriated more. I am a manic depressive and I am bi polar. I have a fear lwaving my home and dealing with people. I am easily distaste so I no longer drive. My mind can’t put things in a right order. I no longer cook bc I almost burned the kitchen down I can’t semester to know where thkngs gi. Icrem in the freezer? Or I put it in the cabinet. . My husband does all the finances while I just sleep I have this chronic fatigue. My asthma keep me up and my papitations at nifht. I am,always tired and can’t concentrate. So please advise me I have done everything add has asked me of. I am in care of a pacychologist and it is going on two years twice a week. I am extremely hopeless . My purse is too heavy for me to carry. I can go on and on. I have worked all my life. I have been sick on and off but this time it knocked me to my knees and I am the worst I have ever been. My vision has deteriated. Please advise . Kindly hopless isabelle.

                  • Kay Derochie

                    Dear Isabelle,

                    Please see my response to your previous posts.

                    Sincerely,
                    Kay

                • Isabelle hall

                  Thank you. You have been the only true voice in my life for the past 9 months. I truly approximate you taking time to help a s tree anger. Thank you

                  • Kay Derochie

                    You are welcome, Isabelle.

  • Lenny

    I called SSA and was told that my online application was not in their system. How could this be, I applied in January. Is it possible that my initial online application got deleted by me applying for SSI 3 months after I applied for SSD online?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Lenny,

      Your SSI application should not have deleted your SSD application. If it has not already been done, ask the local office to check with the Disability Determination Services to see whether they received the medical portion of your claim before you filed the SSI application. If they did that is proof you filed earlier. Or, did you write down your claim access number that you were given when you filed the claim. If you did, you might be able to prove your filing date. Even if not proof is found, if you have been disabled less than seventeen months, the error will cause a delay, but will not cause any loss of benefits. If no record can be found, start the application again.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Amber

    Hi Kay,
    I have Dystonia, chronic intractable migraines, digestive disorders, degenerative issues in my neck, shoulder knee and hip surgeries coming one after the other, arthritis, tremors of the hands arms and head. I applied for disability 6/1/2015 and just recieved a packet for myself and my husband to fill out today 7/19/2016. I am 32. Does receiving this packet mean that I have a good chance of approval? Thank you

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Amber,

      The packet you received is just to gather information, it is not a sign of approval.It is a sign that your claim is being actively worked on. As an aside, I wonder if you meant that you applied 6/1/16, not 6/1/15.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Paula

    I applied for disability 11/20/15 due to osteoarthritis. After going to the CE appointment for exrays, it was determined by the doctor that I have medial compartment narrowing, femoral tibial subluxation, mild spurring involving the tibial plateaus as well as femoral condyles, and chronic appearing bony prominence involving the patella. This diagnosis was made on 5/26/16. When I check the status of my claim, the site says ‘no decision has been made. The DDS for my state is processing the medical information’. What does this mean? Do you think I will be approved? How much longer before I get a decision? It has been almost 8 months now.

    Thanks for your input!
    Paula

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Paula,

      I am unable to predict the outcome of your claim. It will depend on your limitations, work history, education, and age. If your consultative examination (CE) was at the end of May, I would expect you to have a decision soon. If you do not have a decision by the end of July, you might call the examiner to get a status.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Paula

        Hi Kay! I worked in child care 13 years and restaurant mgmt 3 years (03-06). I stopped working in September as it was difficult to keep up with the toddlers in terms of walking, running, getting up from and down on the floor. I have a degree in education but I am not certified to teach and all of my teaching is related to the daycare industry. I will be 51 in a few days. I have tried calling the examiner but my calls are unreturned.

        Paula

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Paula,

          If you have the capacity to work as a restaurant manager, it is unlikely that you will be considered disabled. If you do not have that ability, your education and transferable skills will be evaluated to determine whether there are other occupations that you can perform. While you are waiting for a decision, you might contact your state’s department of vocational rehabilitation to see if you qualify for retraining or job placement into work within your limitations.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

          • Paula

            Hi Kay! I spoke with the examiner to get an update on my application and she said that they will send out a letter this week. She also asked to verify my phone number. Does this mean that I have been approved and why would they need to call?

            Thanks!

            • Kay Derochie

              Dear Paula,

              The request for a phone number may be an indication of approval, but you can’t be sure until you get the actual decision.

              Sincerely,
              Kay

              • Paula

                Hi Kay! Needless to say, my claim was denied. I have filed the reconsideration. Blood pressure is no longer controlled and I am now on 4 BP meds. I am now diabetic, and I am now experiencing pain and popping in my right knee and pain in right shoulder. Since I already have osteoarthritis in my left knee, could it now be affecting my right knee? I will have xrays on the 9th. If it shows signs of any degeneration would they approve my claim based on degeneration of both knees? I am in a lot of pain and unable to stand long periods of time, walk long distances, bend, stoop, etc… Thanks!

                • Kay Derochie

                  Dear Paula,

                  I am unable to predict the outcome of your claim. Your eligibility will depend on whether or not you can work throughout a work week in occupations you have performed in the past or in a new occupation that you could perform if you did not have medical limitations,for example, in one that is performed seated.

                  Sincerely,
                  Kay

        • Randolph

          Hi Kay i was denied two time by AC they consider me disable aftre ALJ decisión and to file new claim,will i be approve benefit

          • Kay Derochie

            Dear Randolph,

            The decision of the Appeals Council appears to have been that you were not denied anytime up until when the judge made the decision, however, you are disabled now. You should be approved if you claim a disability date after the hearing decision letter (not the Appeal Council’s letter) resubmit the most recent evidence that shows your condition since the hearing denial, and include a statement on the SSA-3368 that the Appeal Council told you to file the claim and a Appeal Council copy of the letter.

            Sincerely,
            Kay

    • tee

      Good afternoon I have received a full favorable decision and my claim when to the processing center on june 24, 2016. it is now july 23 and I have no back pay, no monthly payment, no letter of award nothing. I was told by my attorney they have me on critic needs. I checked the system today and I have estimated amounts on my social security and things have been moved around. It say at the bottom of the page you are not receiving disability at this time. It was on the top of the page now its on the bottom. Does that mean I may have my money on Monday. Please help with my questions thank you.

      • Kay Derochie

        Dear Tee,

        It can take two months or more for payment to start. When a payment is being issued, the amount and the date of issuance will show, so I don’t think benefits have been issued yet.

        Sincerely,
        Kay

  • Meg

    I filed Nov 2015 for ssi for my son’s disability and then had a face to face on Jan 4,2016. I took him for his mental exam on May 24,2016. I called and they said a decision hasn’t been made, so how much longer it’s already been 8 months total.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Meg,

      If you do not have a decision by July 24, I suggest calling your congressperson’s office to request that they follow up on the reason for the excessive delay.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • karen

    I filed for ssi in February 2016 – I have had a phone call from local office then a packet to fill out and also a friend/spouse to fill out about my abilities then a packet to fill out with my work history for past 15 months. I also released all my medical records to SS. Am I getting close to having an answer. Thanks

    • karen

      I applied for disability – not sure if ssi is correct

      • Kay Derochie

        Dear Karen,

        You should have received one or more claim receipt that will tell you what type of disability benefits you applied for.

        Sincerely,
        Kay

        • karen

          I applied for disability. My question is since I have gotten this far in the process do you think I have a good chance and are close to getting an answer

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Karen,

      You have probably submitted all the information that will be needed from you. You might check with the examiner to find out whether your medical records have been received. If so, yes, you should be getting close to receiving a decision.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • karen

        ok thanks – sorry didn’t scroll down far enough. thanks for the answer

        • Kay Derochie

          You are welcome, Karen.

  • Tammy

    I applied for disabillity last month and just made a username online at the social security. I was wondering why it says that I have no benifits and when will I hear if I do or not?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Tammy,

      Usually while a claim is pending, no benefit estimates are shown. Claims typically take two to five months for a medical decision.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Lenny

    Will my children be awarded benefits under my initial online SSD application, or will I need to file a Child’s Health Insurance Benefit form (SSA-4-BK) in order for them to get benefits?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Lenny,

      Your own application for disability benefits protects your children’s filing date if you listed them on the application. The SSA-4 BK asks for more detailed information about the children, so if you have been been approved for benefits yourself and asked to complete the form, be sure to do so.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Taeleen Richardson

        I have been diagnose with major depressive disorder the dds says that I have a fairly decent case I applied 01/25/2016 (4thapp) today is 07/5/2016 my case is taking very long it’s very frustrating.i hope you can give me some insight on my case. I was awarded to the court when I five because of my mother drug use I am now 30 years old. I lost my biological mother on 02/02/2011. I need to know if there’s of getting approve for disability benefits. I am currently seeing my treating doctors and he prescribe medication:Ability(10mg) neurotic(300mg) and mirtazaphine(30mg)That’s all for now hope to here from you soon

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Taeleen,

          I am unable to say whether you are disabled as defined by Social Security law. You say that you have been denied four times, so an approval now may depend on whether your condition has worsened.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  • M.T.

    Hello Kay,

    I had my hearing on June 22 and not sure but my medical problems wasn’t on the impairment list.( arthritis, fibromialgya,asthma and high blood pressure) but the ve said there were no jobs for me to perform.I’m 56 years.
    Is this still good to be approved?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear M.T.,

      Based on the vocational expert’s testimony, your claim will be approved if the judge believes that the limitations you have claimed have been proven.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Kristina Thompson

    Hello .. I applied my son for ssi back in February… He has Autism .. I was just wondering after DDS recieves all the medical info… How long does it usually take for a decision.

    Thank you

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Kristina,

      Claims typically take from two to five months for a decision. You can get a decision within a couple weeks to a couple months or more after all medical and vocational information has been submitted.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Hi I was rewarded partial disability. No monthly payment. I have two aneryisum and depression and tachycardia cardiac I reapply again for disability how long does it take to get an answer back

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Julie,

      New claims and reconsideration appeals typically take from two to five months to process.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • len

    Hi, my question is a followed: is it possible for the local welfare office computer system to see if I got approved for ssi before I was notified from SSA? I get a small amount of food stamp, my caseworker called me today for a medical form she needs and she told me that she see that I had a begin date for ssdi and my stamps will be reduced. I never received a letter, call or anything from SSA. Does this sound possible tpbyou? Thank you

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Len,

      Many states have a computer interface with the Social Security and SSI computer systems. The paperwork you completed to get assistance probably included a consent form. I suggest that you contact the food stamp worker to find out whether they have a delivery date of first payment. If not, request that your food stamp grant not be reduced as yet because you have not actually gotten any benefits nor notification of when they will start.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • M.T.

    Hello Kay,
    I 56 years old, had my hearing today and they said i have no medical condition that matches an impairment listing, The Judge then ask the vocational expert what jobs I can perform and with the help of my Attorney it came out to be none jobs. If this a good sign? and how long to receive an answer?
    Thank you.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear M.T.,

      If the judge accepts the limitations presented by your attorney to the vocational expert, your claim will be approved.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • M.T.

        Thank You!

        • Kay Derochie

          You are welcome, M.T.

  • Ann

    My husband applied back in Jan 2016, for SSDI, The only thing we have gotten was an additional questions packet. Which we filled out and mailed back. We have been checking the online application status and now the only thing is says it that: They can not process We Cannot Process Your Request At This Time We are sorry for the inconvenience but we cannot process your request.

    We have called but they say it is in the local office and they will have them give us a call(which never comes). It is now almost July. We are taking it that no news is good news or that he has been denied. Wish they had more information. An that the local office was not so far away.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Ann,

      If you have a phone number for the local office, try calling there. Say you have been told that the claim is in the local office and your husband wants to know what is needed for him to find out the status of his claim and whether he needs to submit anything to get a decision or payment, if payment is due. Otherwise, visiting the office is the only recourse. If your husband can’t travel, be sure to take written authorization for you to inquire on his behalf.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Billie Jo Thurston

    Hi…just applied for disability 5/2016…diagnosed with digenerative disc and bone spurs with digeneration in shoulders and ankles …have had PET scans…CT scans and whole body bone scans…also have C-Diff which will never go away and i will battle from now on and have all the fecal test done and lab results to prove this also…also was diagnosed with invasive ductal carcinoma in April 2016…have biopsy reports mammograms and ultrasounds for all that…had surgery June 8 for removal of cancer in breast…then as soon as ready will begin chemo and radiation…just high school education…always worked in factor work..so cant really do anything but that…have not worked since Feb.12, 2016..what do u think my chances are in being approved and how long do you think it will take …THANKS !!!

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Billie Jo,

      I think you have a reasonably good chance of approval if you have listed all your illnesses and have provided medical information to support your claim. New claims take from two to five months to process.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

    • Kwann

      I applied for disability March 2016 for severe peripheral neuropathy and depression. They set up mental and physical exams in May. I received a letter from DDS examiner two weeks later after exam. It said findings from medical exam suggest i seek medical attention ASAP. I haven’t heard anything else from them. The doctor at the exam was very concerned about my sugar levels and blood pressure and loss of sensation. Is it normal to receive a letter like this and still get denied? Thanks

      • Kay Derochie

        Dear Kwann,

        A person can be in urgent need of medical care to avoid a stroke or permanent neuropathy and still be able to work until health worsens for lack of medical care, so the agency’s communication may or may not be an indication of an approved claim. That said, it would be a good idea to follow the doctor’s advice and seek medical care.

        Sincerely,
        Kay

  • tim

    I have been diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia, i applied for disability in december of 2014 i went to a ce in october 2015 about a month later i was denied benefits i moved and never recieved an appeal letter and i just gave up on disability and tried to go back to work and that has not been good because i cant hold down a job because im so paranoid that someone is setting me up so i reapplied on may 2016 and im waiting to hear anything back from them, my question is my condition has gotten worse and i wont go in public at all so if they request i see another ce can that doctor come to my house because i cant leave my house, also sense i didnt file an appeal on the first case will i not recieve any back pay, and if i do recieve back pay will it be from the date of the original application or the date of my current application also ive been to the mental hospital 5 times for this condition involuntarily i also had a psychiatrist for 2 years and somehow they still dont have enough medical evidence to see im full blown schizophrenic how is that possible.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Tim,

      You may not be asked to go to a consultative examination (CE) if you have enough current medical records, but it seems unlikely if you never go out unless a mental health provider comes to your home. If you are asked to go to a CE, call the examiner who sent the request and explain that you do not leave your home because of your mental illness and ask whether the doctor can visit your home for the CE. I don’t know that that can be arranged, but it doesn’t hurt to ask.

      If you are approved, payment will be based on the current application. Social Security benefits will begin to accrue the later of twelve months before your current application or the sixth full calendar month after your established date of disability onset as determined by Social Security. SSI benefits begin the month after application if you have proof of disability for that time period.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Amanda

        Hello kay i was worderning since im on ssi an i start to work n get like 9.25 n hour would my pay go down n i was worderning if my daughrer gets approve will she recieve 733 still if i start working

        • Amanda

          I was told my daughter decision was made i should recieve a letter in the mail i was just worderning if the letter would also stating the amount or that letter would be seprat

          • Kay Derochie

            Dear Amanda,

            If the medical decision is an approval, usually the award letter with payment amounts is separate from the notice of medical decision.

            Sincerely,
            Kay

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Amanda,

          If you have no other minor children in the household and the disabled child does not have another parent or step-parent in the household and you work full time and you pay for all the household’s shelter and food costs, your child will receive $733 for months that your receive four weekly paychecks or two bi-weekly paychecks and less for months you receive either five weekly or three bi-weekly paychecks.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  • Lenny

    Does the Explanation of Determination (FORM SSA-4268-C4) always have “DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES” and “Social Security Administration” at the top left corner?

  • Lenny

    Should all decision notices regarding your SSD or SSI claims have the Social Security Administration Regional Commissioner’s name and address on it?

    • Amanda

      Hello kay how long should it take the dds doctors to make a decision and wen do you think i will get a decision on my daughters case

      • Kay Derochie

        Dear Amanda,

        Please see my reply of May 28. The consulting physician’s report would have to be reviewed in context of the other information in file. The decision could be made with a week or it could take a few weeks for the review to be completed. There is really no way to predict it.

        Sincerely,
        Kay

        • Anthony

          Hi,I had my c.e visit 5//20/16 I have not heard from dds,is this a good sign or bad sign that I haven’t heard anything in 2 months,is longer wait better,I ready you said it may take a week or weeks,but 2 months,thanks,any opinions

          • Kay Derochie

            Dear Anthony,

            How long a claim pends is not an indication of approval or denial. I suggest that you call the examiner and ask whether the consultant’s report has been received and, if so, roughly when you can expect a decision.

            Sincerely,
            Kay

          • Anthony

            Hi Kay,thank you for getting back to me,my attorney called me and told me that he just received a copy of my cc visit,the doctor completely ruled in my favor,saying I had PTSD and was permanently disabled, that made me feel so happy,he also told me that it was being reviewed by a supervisor, and then it goes to the medical board for final review, I think my chances are very good since their doctor gave me a very favorable report, would you agree thank you

            • Kay Derochie

              Dear Anthony,

              The consulting physician’s supportive report will definitely act in your favor. If you are denied, I recommend getting a copy of your claim file to review for your appeal, so that you can see both the doctor’s report and the decision memorandum.

              Also, hire an experienced Social Security attorney to assist 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 your retroactive award before they send your back pay to you.

              Sincerely,
              Kay

              Sincerely,

              • Anthony

                Hi Kay, thank you again for your quick response, I already paid for and experienced disability attorney, so that parts finished and out of the way thank you,I called my DDS examine her today and asked what stage my case was at,she told me that she would be getting it back from the assistant director shortly and then she would let me know if she needed anything else, how much longer do you think now before decision is made, today is October 18, 2016, it’s been a long journey, I filed April 20 of 2015 i’m basically waiting for the The Denial or pool but I feel very good about my case and my attorney said the same thing we have a great chance of winning this case, how much longer kay, of course I will update you when the final letter gets to me

                • Kay Derochie

                  Dear Anthony,

                  If the review by the “assistant director” doesn’t result in direction for your claims examiner to gather more information, you could have the decision within a couple weeks of the review. If it is decided more information is needed for a decision, I can’t estimate how long it could take.

                  Sincerely,
                  Kay

  • Bea

    Hi, I applied for ssi/ssdi 3 months ago. I have been calling to check my claim status about once a week. Today I called and the automated system could not find my claim at all and currently I am holding to find out more information. Does this normally mean that decision has been made on a claim? I also have checked the ssa.gov site that I signed up for and usually it would not disclose a benefit amount but today it is listing a claim amount but at the top continues to say I am not recieving benefits (site has always said this). Should I assume I have been denied?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Bea,

      By the time I respond, you will be off hold and have an answer, but my guess is that your claim has been medically denied.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Lecshea

        I got a letter today saying the medical portion of my claim has been approved and that I need to come down to the office and show my id and bank statement what does that mean

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Lecshea,

          It means that when you provide the requested documents your claim will be reviewed fully for the non-medical factors and if meet those, your will receive benefits. Social Security Disability (SSD) non-medical factors such as insured status are reviewed in a regional payment center. Supplemental Security Income (SSI) non-medical criteria are to have assets and income below a certain level. SSI benefits are authorized from the local office.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

      • helene jung

        I sent sent my green card driver’s license all original documents along with my workers compensation packages. The system still ask for age verification and it has been over 2 weeks. I have been calling the office every other day to locate my documentation but nobody can seem to find them or screen them into the system. How long does it take for documents to be screened in the SSA office? Do I need to send a marriage certificate to? I was not born here in the US. I have been getting the runaround for a very long time and I just want to know. Thank you Kay

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Helene,

          I suggest that you clarify the documents required for age verification. Specifically do you have to present a birth certificate? If not, take the documents you already presented to the office again and ask that the data be entered into the computer system while you wait.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  • Lenny

    Is the SSD benefit payment separate from the SSDI benefit payment?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Lenny,

      SSD and SSDI are acronyms for Social Security Disability and Social Security Disability Insurance and though technically SSDI refers to the insurance program not the benefits, the two are informally used interchangeably by many to refer to the same Social Security benefits. Supplemental Security Income (SSI) is a separate benefit program with a separate payment.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Lenny

    Does the maximum family benefit include the claimants SSDI benefit payment? For example if my SSDI payment is $2,000, is that to be considered part of the family benefit?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Lenny,

      Yes, your SSDI benefit before reduction for Medicare premiums or taxes is part of your family maximum benefit.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Lenny

    If i apply for SSD with 110 work credits and I have 4 minor children, will I need to apply for any other benefits, or will my SSD application be enough to qualify me for the maximum benefits for me and my family?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Lenny,

      If twenty of your 110 work credits were earned in the ten years before you became disabled, you will be insured for Social Security Disability (SSDI) benefits. The amount of your life-time work earnings will determine your benefit amount and whether dependent benefits are payable. (SSDI benefits can be a few hundred dollars a month for the worker to over $2,600 a month depending on work history.) You can get an estimate of your benefits by setting up a “My Social Security” account at http://www.ssa.gov and requesting an earnings statement (not a benefit statement). The earnings statement will give an estimate for you and for your family if dependent benefits are payable.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Hi I was just wondering how old you have tii be too collect monies from your social security am 38 declared disable and was working as a manager fir7 years but with my company total of 11 years can I collect monies? From my earnings of the years?

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Dorothy,

          Disability benefits can be paid to anyone who has worked enough in Social Security taxed occupation. As you describe your work, you should be insured. If you are unable to work in your past occupations or in other occupations, I suggest that your file a Social Security Disability claim.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  • Lenny

    If the analyst has all your current medical documentation from your treating physician, couldI still be sent to a CE exam? Are CE exams routine for all cases?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Lenny,

      Consultative examinations (CEs) are not routine for all claims. The CEs are requested when the examiner has some question about your condition(s) or the extent they limit you that is not answered in the medical documentation that has been submitted.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Lenny

    Once the examiner makes a decision on my SSD claim, how long will I be notified if it’s approved or denied? and where should I expect the letter to be coming from?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Lenny,

      You should get a letter of claim denial for medical reasons or a notice of medical approval with the information that non-medical factors are still under review. The letterhead will say it comes from the Social Security Administration, but the letter is trigger by the Disability Determination Services (DDS). The Social Security award letter is triggered by the regional payment center after your insured status and onset date are reviewed and entered into your computer claim record. You should receive initial notice within a week of the medical decision being finalized in DDS.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Lenny

    What happens to my ssdi application if someone reports me for social security disability fraud?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Lenny,

      What happens depends on whether you have been fraudulent. There could be an investigation either way. If you are not, benefits will not be affected. If you have committed fraud to get benefits, your benefits will be stopped and you could be prosecuted.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Lenny

    At what point in the SSD process does the “Disability Determination Transmittal (831)” enter my SSD file? and what exactly does it mean?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Lenny,

      A form 831 is just a cover document for moving a claim from local office to Disability Determination Services (DDS) and back. Nowadays it is used only if your claim is a paper claim. Most claims are filed into an electronic claims program and transferred electronically.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Lenny

    What does: “Disability Determination Explanation (DDE)” mean in my Social security electronic file?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Lenny,

      I don’t know what that annotation means. You might try calling the call center at 1-800-772-1213 to see if they can decode it for you.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Lenny

    How am I supposed to be informed if I must have a CE exam? By letter from social security administration, or by phone call from a cell phone number?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Lenny,

      If a medical examination is required for your claim, you will be notified by a letter from the Disability Determination Services (DDS), which is a state agency contracted by the Social Security Administration to make the medical disability decision. Sometimes an examiner from DDS will call; but in those cases, you should also get a letter.

      Sincerely,
      Kay
      se

  • Lenny

    Who do I report to if I suspect that my local Social Security office is participating in professional misconduct? (Giving me a false denial)

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Lenny,

      I do not know the circumstances that led to your question, but denying a claim is not misconduct. If you disagree with a decision, the appropriate action is to file an appeal. If you exhaust all appeals within the Social Security Administration, you can file suit (appeal) in Federal District Court.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • TashaJ

    Hi. I am an 27-year-old woman and i filled for disability on September 2015. I have an upper right arm amputation. It was my dominant arm. I was wondering do I have a good chance for receiving disability benefits and how long will it take. Right now I am waiting on papers to see when I have to go and see a law judge.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Tashaj,

      What is in question is whether there are occupations you can perform that do not require the use of your dominant arm. I am not a vocational expert (VE), so I do not have the answer to that question. When you are in court, if the VE says anything you don’t agree with about your abilities or about jobs, you have the right to disagree and explain why and to ask questions.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • TashaJ

        Thanks kay, But if the ve says i can perform jobs can i be denied.

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Tashaj,

          At hearings usually the judge asks if there any occupations you can perform. The VE answers based on your education and work experience. Then the judge will ask whether you could do those jobs with the limitations you are claiming. If the vocational expert (VE) says that you can perform occupations with the limitations you are alleging, your claim likely will be denied.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  • Tony

    Hello Kay,

    I’m writing in reference to my recent case. Long story short I am a twice deployed infantry veteran who was diagnosed with extreme PTSD and Schizophrenia about a month ago. I have been receiving 70% disability from the VA for a few years. I tried to work but it didn’t work out too well. I told the VA and they scheduled me for another examination. They agreed that the disability got severely worse. They gave my 100% TP. I now have applied for SSDI last week. They said because of a new law they expedite veterans with 100% TP. My question is do you have an idea of how quick they expedite veterans due to this new law?

    Thank you,
    Tony

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Tony,

      The usual time from for processing new claims is two to five months. I don’t know now much more quickly your claim will be processed now that it has been expedited. I can say that it will wait in line behind other expedited claims that were filed earlier.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Tony

        Thank you for the hasty response.

        • Kay Derochie

          You are welcome, Tony.

  • Suzanne

    Hi, My husband who is 62 applied for ssdi in January of 2016. His case is with DDS who have sent him the function report to fill out. We did return this form to them but the return envelope was addressed to a PO box 30714 in Utah and we live in Minnesota.

    I am confused by this can you offer any clarity?

    Thank you

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Suzanne,

      It is possible that the Disability Determination Service (DDS) in Minnesota is backed up so that your husband’s claim was forwarded to Utah to process. You can call the person who sent out the form to get an explanation.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Suzanne

        Thank you so much Kay!

        • Kay Derochie

          You are welcome, Suzanne.

  • Local ssa office said everything is worked up for my application which is for ssi and its with the medical.i called dds and she said examiner haven’t reviewed it yet but they have all my medical records and everything else.i already than submitted pay stubs twice to my caseworker like she asked.does this sound like approval or denial.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Shon,

      You are financially eligible or a medical review would not be conducted. I have insufficient information to offer an opinion on whether you meet Social Security’s definition of disability to be approved medically.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Amanda

        Hello kay ! If I apply for SSI for my daughter on February 19th 2016 hey I got all the information that they need it but they want me to do two more test on June 2nd 2016 but they have all the other information that they needed but a person at social secuity after she gets those two test done i should get a decision in two weeks in that correct ?

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Amanda,

          If the representative said you would get a decision two weeks after the consultative examination report has been received, then that could be a reasonable estimate. Note that the consulting physician has three weeks to submit his or her report.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

          • Amanda

            Hey kay i was if she was approve for an get the 733 would she get the 87 dollars for the state to

            • Kay Derochie

              Dear Amnanda,

              I am not an expert on how states determine the amount of SSI state supplement they will pay. I suggest that you ask your local Social Security office.

              Sincerely,
              Kay

      • I have severe anxiety that I been struggling with for 15 years on meds I Also have right pulmonary embolism severe chest pain high blood pressure enlarged heart and tachycardia

  • Jennifer

    Hello Kay,

    Thanks for helping so many with questions on this circus that is SSI & SSDI.

    I have been denied no less than 5 times, am waiting on my court date, applied August 2016 right after an involuntary stay in a state psychiatric hospital. My medical records all had the following: Bipolar, Major Depression, OCD, Anxiety Disorder, Borderline Personality Disorder, Schizophrenia, Migraines, tension headaches, epilepsy, seizures, sciatic back pain. All of this was not enough for success and they denied me.

    While waiting on a hearing date, my health has gone from bad to worse. I have now been diagnosed with Fibromyalgia. Woke up morning almost deaf, turns out 60% loss in one ear, 40% in other, drs believe an auto-immune disease is why, my mom died from one. But also I have been diagnosed with Ataxia and also Chorea (while still undergoing tests of what exactly is wrong).

    Now from what I’ve read, the Ataxia, Chorea, and Epilepsy, much less everythi g else, should qualify me for SSDI. My question is, do I drop off medical records to local SS office who may do nothing with it? Do I try to figure out who my case worker is and call them? Do I report it on the 800 # SS line? I am just not sure and this is Detroit, they are in no hurry to be helpful or get things done un a timely fashion. What is my best bet here? I have copies of all relevant medical records and the extensive, numerous tests already done, but there are more coming up. Thanks so much for your assistance and helping so many of us with this nightmare of bureaucracy.

    • Jennifer

      Sorry, August 2015 initially applied, immediately after involuntary psychiatric hospitalization release, my 2nd one. Drs records there too backed up all my diagnoses, still was sent to the bs ss drs. and denied.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Jennifer,

      In theory you could take them to your local Social Security office, but I suggest submitting them directly to the hearing office that is handling your appeal. If you do not already have the address and phone number of the hearing office, you can get it from the local office or by calling Social Security at 1-800-772-1213. Then call the hearing office and get instructions of how to address the packet.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Louise

    Hello,

    I applied for SSD benefits in December 2015 online. Received a call a few days later to set up an interview with my local Social Security office for February 2016 and to put my application in again (not sure why I had to put an application in again if I did it on line already). The interviewer checked the information I had entered on my online application and to see if I had any new information to add. I didn’t at that time. So they told me it would be 4 months give or take till I hear a decesion on my case. Between February 2016 to the present, I have received a large packet in the mail from my local Social Security Office to fill out, it was like a questionaire that I had to returned to them. I called them about a couple of months of not hearing from anyone and the person stated that my case was “Pending”, they are received all medical records needed along with the packet/questionaire I sent them, and nothing more was needed at that time.

    When should I expect to hear a decesion on my case? It’s been about 5-6 months almost.

    Also, what are my chances in getting disability with the types of conditions I have which include: Bipolar Disorder, Severe Depression, Stage 3 Osteoarthritis in both knees, chronic back and leg pain.

    Thank you for your time.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Louise,

      It could easily take two months from when you mailed in the last packets of information for your claim to be processed and perhaps longer. Your claim was started online but the interview in the office completed the initial application. Four months from February would be mid-June. If you don’t have a decision by the end of June, you could try calling the Disability Determination Services (DDS) to find out the progress of the review. Whether or not you are found disabled as defined by Social Security law depends on how severely your conditions limit you and how well your limitations are documented.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Ron

    Hi Kay

    I originally applied for SSDI in September 2011. Was denied, appealed denied, appealed went to ALJ denied, appealed to falls church and again denied. Got that denial in Dec 2015. Yes it took that long
    In the denial they stated to apply again using the date of Sept 14, 2014 as disability date. Due to info in my file

    My lawyer and I applied again, in Jan 2016 denied and currently in appeal on state level since February 2016

    Do you think that I will be waiting another 4 years for this all to go through or have things sped up

    Epilepsy, migraines, cardiomyopathy of heart, peripheral nerve disease, drop foot left foot, (no feeling left leg), degenerative disc disease L4/L5, high blood pressure, congestive heart failure, depression, PTSD

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Ron,

      Because your pending claim is a new claim, processing times will be about the same as before. If you are denied at the reconsideration level, you will likely wait a year for a hearing date. You might talk with your attorney about whether there is any possibility of presenting the Appeals Council’s recommendation to file with a new disability date for your current claim.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Jennifer

    I filed for disability on 9/2015 was denied on 10/2015, filed for reckon within 10 days. It has now been almost 8 months with no answer as to if I will get SSI…I do not qualify for SSD. My case worker calls ever so often to ask about any new medical appointments or medications. When I ask how long until a decision is made I get told he will review the medical records and make a decision, mind you this has happened 3 times. When should I get an answer for approval? Is it normal to take 8 months for a decision on SSI? What can I ask him or say to get some answers? Every time I talk to him he just tells me the case is being reviewed and a decision will be made if there is enough information from the medical records. I feel this is taking longer than it should. I talked with a lawyer who said they will take my case only if the recon for SSI is denied. Thanks

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Jennifer,

      Eight months is longer than usual for a reconsideration appeal. I suggest that you call the claims examiner at DDS and politely ask whether anything is needed from you for a decision to be made. If you are told no, point out that the appeal has been pending eight months and ask what is a realistic time frame for a decision. If you are not given one or you are given a time frame but you don’t get a decision by then, call again and ask to speak to the examiner’s supervisor.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Jennifer

        Thank you, I have asked those questions and each time I am told that my medical records are being rewied and a decision will be made soon. I can’t seem to get a straight answer from my worker. My local office also tells me they can’t give me any information that I need to call the DDS. I feel as if I am just being passed from one to the other with no straight answer from either place. Not to mention when I call my case worker it’s like pulling teeth to get him on the phone or to call me when I leave a voicemail for him.

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Jennifer,

          Given that your reconsideration has been pending eight months, I suggest calling the DDS and asking to be connected to the claims examiner’s supervisor. Then relate that your claim has been pending for eight months and for the last xxx number of months you have been told it was being reviewed. Ask whether the supervisor can get the review unstuck.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

          • Jennifer

            Thank you…do you know if they will take into account that I have some debt that needs to be paid and I have been out of work since may 2014? If I express this will it make a difference in the time frame to which a decision will me made? I will be calling them tomorrow.

            • Kay Derochie

              Dear Jennifer,

              Your situation as you describe it is very similar to many, if not most, people applying for disability benefits. If you are in danger of losing housing, you can submit a statement of dire need and request more expedited handling; but because many people are in that situation, it may not speed things up much.

              Sincerely,
              Kay

    • I had an Aortic Anurysum December 4, 2015. And I filed on December 26, their asking me now to go get a x-ray of my back now. It’s cool I have kidney issues now as well. I had a aortic disection Stanford -A Type. What are my chance of getting disability?

      • Kay Derochie

        Dear Chip,

        You may have a possibility of being approved; it depends on how much and how your conditions limit you and the type of work you have done in the past. Be sure that the DDS has updated information about your kidney condition.

        Sincerely,
        Kay

  • Beth McCarty

    Hello. I filed for disability initially on December 2,2015. I had an evaluation with a psychologist on 4/19/16. I’m coming up on 5 months of waiting for a decision. I haven’t heard anything yet. My disabilities include bipolar one, generalized anxiety disorder, panic disorder, and major depressive disorder. Do you think I should be getting a decision soon?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Beth,

      The consulting psychologist has three weeks after your examination to submit a report. Then your claim will be reviewed again. That review can take from a couple weeks to a couple months.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • A.D.W

    I applied for disability and received work activity papers with a letter in the mail to go see a SSA representative at my local SSC office. The letter said we would review my earning records, my claim for benefits, go over the application with me and whether I wanted direct deposit or direct express. My mom says that mean I’m about to be approved because that’s the letter that sent to her. Is this true or not?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear A.D.W.,

      You do not say how long ago you filed your application; however, if the “work activity papers” are a form on which to record your work history for the past fifteen years, your claim has not been approved.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Jon

        Dear kay,
        I applied for disabilty in november and am wondering, If approved. Will it be by letter or online? Also my application was online

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Jon,

          You will receive a letter as formal notice. The approval will show up online when the payments are authorized.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  • Mandy

    Hi Kay
    I applied for ssdi and ssi four months ago first my claim number was ss#c1 and now it’s ss# hc1 I had applied five years ago and went in front of judge who said I was disabled but I was also disqualified do to my tax return I filed while waiting for hearing my question is do you think I’m approved be ause of change in claim number. I called local office and they said I was in review and most of the time they agree with initial decision.but could not tell me the decision.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Mandy,

      “HC1” means disabled child so it is possible that the decision, which is apparently undergoing a quality assurance review, was an approval.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Mary

    Not sue what is my onset date is my disability reacurred in Sep 2014 i applied for ssdi on dec7 2015

  • Wendy

    I had a stroke Oct 8, 2015. I applied for disability on Oct 18, 2015 now it is April and no denial / just some paperwork from now and then. I have a appointment for mental exam but Dr cancelled the appointment and was told my caseworker would need to reschedule and yet to hear anything. I have already had a FemPop (Aorta replaced back in 2012) but did so back to work but since my stroke I have short term memory loss, hard time speaking, and cry a lot. What do I need to do ?? Was told can’t get a lawyer until I get a denial… It has been 6 months nothing…

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Wendy,

      You can check with the claims examiner to find out which records and doctors’ statements have been received to see if any medical evidence from your own doctors is missing and should be submitted. If you are seeing a psychologist or any other mental health professional be sure those records are submitted. If you have not had a cognitive evaluation, you might try to get one on your own so that you can submit documentation of short-term memory loss. Also, you physician could make a statement about your ability to handle finances because sometimes consultative examination are just for that evaluation. The form your doctor could complete is SSA-787. (Attorneys usually take only denied cases because they are paid from a percentage of back pay and there’s no back pay for the first five full calendar months of disability.)

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Amanda

        Hi i was justed wordeein how long it take for the dds to make a decision one they have all the paper work …is ulster colitis a disibaility my 5 year old suffer from that since the age of 3 an i applied for ssi for her

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Amanda,

          Most new claims are processed in from two to five months after the application has been completed.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

      • Lottie

        Hi I applied for SSI Benefits 8 months ago I have been to the doctor they assigned me to but every time I call the DDS they want call me back I think just keep pulling my leg and and string me along I have no income I am about to get put out on the street if I don’t hear anything from them in June I am going to tell them I don’t want they can have it I am tired of kissing behind

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Lottie,

          The slowness of the processing of your claim is not personal to you. The agencies are often backed up. If you went to the consultative examination more than two months ago, I suggest that you call DDS and ask to speak to your claim examiner’s supervisor. Politely explain the claim has been pending eight months and you are in danger of being evicted. Ask if the supervisor can look into getting a decision on your claim. Don’t withdraw your claim; it may eventually be approved.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  • Olivia Moore

    Hello Kay, I have read many of the questions others have posed in hopes of reading something useful to my husbands circumstances. However not really seeing it. So I’m going to try and keep this brief. My husband Brian originally applied for SSD in January of 2011. Approximately 8 months later was denied. Then appealed and denied second time 8 months later. Got a lawyer and appealed. 10 months later notified of a hearing with judge not sure the exact time frame to hearing date. Then about a year later denied. Then about 6-8 months later stood by decision. Then appealed through court to have another judge review. 10 months later won that to have sent back due to error from original judge. 9 months later just got a letter that he will be scheduled for a new hearing and new doctor information can be submitted due to court notification. The letter states the longer/older a cause the more priority it gets but can still take months to be scheduled. My question is does it normally take this long with each step (5years total). Doesn’t seem to be expedited at any point. What can I expect at this point time wise. My husband is 32 now so I know age is working against him. It just seems crazy that it can take this long. 5 years with no income. Seems like you know your stuff so any thoughts appreciated. Thanks Olivia

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Olivia,

      Eight months for initial claim and reconsideration hearings is longer than the norm. Wait times for hearings and Appeals Council reviews run a year to two years. If the claim was taken to federal court, likewise, the time frames are long. Getting a claim expedited is rare except at initial application based on a terminal illnesses or certain named diagnoses when proofs are submitted or quickly attainable.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Tammie

    My husband received a denial letter today, is it ok to go ahead and file an appeal? Thank you

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Tammie,

      An appeal can be filed as soon as a denial letter is received. It might be a good idea to get the help of an experienced Social Security attorney. When you hire a Social Security attorney, you do not have to pay any legal fees up front and you will pay attorney fees only if you are approved for benefits. Social Security law sets the amount your attorney can charge, and the Social Security Administration pays the attorney directly from your retroactive award before they send your back pay to you.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Lenny

    I applied for SSD online 1/2016. Am I supposed to receive a questionaire from the New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance Division of Disability Determinations office regarding my SSD application? Could this be another agency invading my privacy?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Lenny,

      The Social Security Administration contracts with the states to review and decide medical eligibility for Social Security and Supplemental Security Income disability claims. The name of the state agency varies from state to state, but generally the name will include “Disability Determination.” Accordingly, I would say that the request your receives is valid.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Kara

    Hello,

    This is my first time trying for SSDI.

    I applied in January, but I have been trying to figure out if my injury qualifies me for Compassionate Allowance?

    I have a lower right leg amputation an inch below the knee. I know my type of amputation doesn’t immediately qualify by just that. However, my leg ( knee included) had to be completely reconstructed with skin graphs which has led to extreme pain and discomfort when wearing a prosthetic.

    I have sores on my knee that never goes away and often times get infected which can easily lead to further amputation.

    They are processing my medical claim currently.

    Thanks.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Kara,

      I don’t think that your claim qualifies for a compassionate allowance; however, the amputation and intermittent chronic infections may result in a claim approval.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Jay

        Hi I was wondering my determiner called me and said the decision is made and I’ll receive a letter from my local office, he sent me to a medical examiner also I’m bipolar manic and depression I also have cellulits that I have for life haven’t worked all my life either because of the depression so not a lot of work history or cash no bank accounts nothing like that I also am pregnant with twins and have twins what do you think he came up with he was pretty cool he called if he was supposed to and I did everything he asked I’m obese so most the medical exercise they tried to get me to do what kinda hard

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Jay,

          I am not sure what you are asking. If you would like to pose your question, I will try to respond.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  • denise

    I also forgot to say that my sister advocates lawyers released her as there client because she was denied at the hearing with the judge now that she is at the appeal court she has no representation and know one will take her case unless she gets a decision of denial from the appeal courts. I am praying that she is approved because she has been going through so much and has lost so much weight within 2years she went from being a happy and healthy size 145 to now a size 117. I am trying to find out how I can apply for a home care person for her but she only receive food stamps and IEHP insurance.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Denise,

      Please see my response of a few minutes ago to your first post. You might also look into whether your sister’s insurance would pay for assisted living for her.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • D

    Hey Kay,

    My son was diagnosed with a bone marrow disorder that is a compassionate allowance condition and supposed to be fast tracked. He was diagnosed in August and we applied for him (he is 20) in September. We have his application still with the determination service as of Feb. 19th and I am at a loss why they are taking so long. He has had three bone marrow biopsies that show his bone cellularity (the amount of blood being produced in his bone marrow) is under 5 % and it is supposed to be at 80%. He is taking high dose immunosuppressant medicine right now (that cannot be taken for a lifetime) to help his body reset itself. He will not be off of this medicine for at least another year and if this treatment fails he will get a bone marrow transplant. If he gets a normal sickness like the flu he could crash all of his labs, WBC, RBC, Platelets, Hemaglobin and get an infection and die. He was very active and this condition has totally changed his life. I am wondering if they always take this long with compassionate conditions that have been confirmed from multiple medical locations to include the NIH. Thanks.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear D.,

      Typically a compassionate allowance claim would be processed faster. I suggest that you call the Disability Determination Services handling his claim and ask what else they need for a decision and politely note that you understand that his claim was eligible for quick compassionate allowance and it has been four months. It’s possible that the claim didn’t get flagged for faster processing.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      Sincerely,
      Kay

    • Lottiette Ridley

      Dear Kay.
      I applied for Supplement security income in Oct 15,2015 and I still haven’t heard anything yet everyday I call my case worker but she is never in I feel like they really don’t care about people they pretend like they are helping people but they really are not I no just know I really need this but if they are not going to give it to me and they keep string me along I don’t want it so what should I do I am being treated for cancer but right now I don’t know what to do help

      • Kay Derochie

        Dear Lottiette,

        Social Security claims typically take two to five months for a decision. It can take longer in areas that get a very large influx of claims. You are not quite at the five month mark. Calling every day will not help your claim. If you have not received a decision by the end of March, call the claims examiner at the Disability Determination Services (DDS) and ask whether they are waiting for anything from you or your doctors. If not, ask what remains to be done for a decision to be rendered and when realistically you could expect a decision. Then wait that long to call again. If they are waiting for something from your medical providers, follow up to the medical records department of those providers to see if you can move things along.

        Sincerely,
        Kay

  • N.johnson

    Hello, I went into the local office on 11/20/15 to apply for auxiliary benefits for my newborn to collect off my record.Caseworker said case/claim was at processing center as of 12/10/15 and it was pending.Caseworker followed up on 1/4/16 by sending a message to processing center I’m now under medical review but had applied for ticket to work program case Is now back at local office something about transfer of ownership.Idk what that means and still no award or denial letter! What should I do? Is this a good thing?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear N.,

      It sounds as if you have two actions pending. One is the application for your child and one is a medical review to see whether you are still disabled. Usually, if you have a Ticket to Work, medical reviews are deferred. Your child’s application should be approved for any month that you are eligible. I don’t know what is meant by “transfer of ownership” because I don’t know what is being transferred.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Jackie

        I was in a car accident was in a coma 4 8 weeks I had brain damange broken pelvis 24 surgeriesand I have a 5 yr old son I applied 4 ssi back in july when will I find out I’m a single mom don’t know how I’m going to cont taking care of my son I went thru all my savings I am at the last of my everything idk what 2 do

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Jackie,

          I suggest that you contact the Disability Determination Services and talk to the examiner who is handling your claim. Inquire whether they need anything from you or your doctors to reach a decision. If they say yes, tell them you will take action to get it to them. If you are told no, then politely point out that your claim has been pending six months and ask when you can realistically expect a decision. In the meantime, if you haven’t yet, I suggest applying for sNAp (food stamps) and TANF (Temporary Assistance for Needy Families) at your local state or county social services office.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

      • Nylah Johnson

        Perhaps they meant that the file was back at the local office! Here is an update on Feb.27th I look at my online account and everything was fine as far as my benefits were concerned that were due on March 3. But I still didn’t know if my daughter was on my record. I then called the 800 number and was told that I needed to go in to the local office and turn a function report.So I did on Feb.29.On March 3 I didn’t receive my benefits I went back into the local office on March 4 and asked if I would qualify for critical pay until all this was sorted out.I was told to come back to the office to talk to the caseworker the following Monday.But March 5 I received a letter stating that my benefits have been terminated due to failure to cooperate!Up to this point I’ve never received a closer letter and no one at the local office ever made me aware of this situation as many time I’ve called or went in on behalf of my daughter who was suppose to collect off my record…I have turned in my function report and saw a doctor’s for a CE. Question is can I still qualify for critical pay even though I missed the 19 day period.The cessation letter states that benefits were going to be terminated as of Jan.2016.And my online account States that benefits were suspended as of Jan.2015. I just don’t know what is going on or what I can do? Stressful trying to explain to my landlord,car dealer, etc.that I just don’t have the money to pay.

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Nylah,

          It is unlikely that you can have your benefits extended because you did not file an appeal on the closure of your claim within the ten days following receipt of the letter. You are likely to get an overpayment letter for benefits paid in February for January, if any. However, because your are appealing the closure and, therefore, the fact of the overpayment, there should be no collection efforts until your appeal is settled. The closure letter was probably already in the works by the time you filed the function report. At this point, I suggest that you request a copy of your claim file so you can see exactly everything they wanted and didn’t get. That will let you know whether the recent function report is now in file, so if it is not, you can resubmit it and, anything else that you think you need based on what you read in the file.

          Because you most likely will not be able to have benefits continued during the appeal and some back pay will be due when benefits are reinstated from which they can collect a fee, you might be able to get an attorney to help you with the appeal.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

          • Nylah Johnson

            That’s just it the cessation letter came on March 5 but was dated back to Feb.27 stating as of Jan. 2016 benefits would be terminated.The original adjudicator no longer worked for me them as well as the vendor I was sent to for a CE.I notified the DDS office and I was assigned a new adjudicator and was sent to another vendor for a CE.During this entire process I’ve been in constant contact with local office and #800 on behalf of my newborn who was suppose to be able to collect auxillary benefits off of my record! My question is how could the local office make such an error by not telling me of this situation? FYI my case is pending at the DDS office.

            • Kay Derochie

              Dear Nylah,

              The local office would not know the outcome of the medical review before you did. I do not understand your saying that your case is pending at the DDS unless you mean you have appealed and the appeal is now pending.

              Sincerely,
              Kay

          • N Johnson

            No never started and appeal local office States benefits are terminated I did receive benefits in Feb. I was in the process of a medical review which is pending at DDS in Springfield I went to a CE March 12…that’s y it’s so confusing I was never made aware of benefits suspended/termintaed until the letter came in March for failure to cooperate that goes back to Jan 2016.I was told not allowed to appeal the 10 days because I was suspended back in Jan 2015 #800 number says no its 2016 Jan either way cessation letter dates Feb 27 2016

            • Kay Derochie

              Dear N.,

              I suggest that when you appeal, you request continuation of benefits stating good cause for asking for continuation based on the confusing situation of having a CE scheduled after the date of the termination letter, that is, you still thought you had an open claim.

              Sincerely,
              Kay

  • Cindy Marie

    Great news Kay- I have been approved for SSDI benefits!!..

    I received my letter today and the local office called me too! (Both on the same day) She wanted to set up a time to go over the kids benefits. We will be doing that tomorrow. I got approved faster than most. 8 weeks almost to the day. I should get my first check 2/2016.

    I applied for benefits on 11-13-2015, I put my onset date as 5-14-2014, which I knew was not going to be accepted because I am still working and during all of 2014 and for the first 3 months of 2015 I made over the SGA. (not by much but still over the SGA) Starting in April my SGA dropped down to a few hundred dollars below the monthly SGA and I was given an EOD of 4/1/2015. I am good with this!

    I asked the rep, since I am working and was working when I applied how will that effect the trial work period. She told me it wouldn’t, she told me if I continue to work earning under the SGA it will not effect my disability nor will it count towards any trial work period. When I asked why, she said because I was working and earning less than the SGA when I applied and while waiting for approval.

    She told me that if I was to stop working (this job) and then started to work again, that’s when my trial work period would start. But as long as I continue to work (this job) I could do so. I could not quit this job and go back to it, that too would start my trial work period too.

    Is this correct? It would be great if that was the case because I would love to cut back on my hours, to something I can manage, but try to work so I can manage to pay off some of the debt that has accumulated. I know some might think that because I was approved fast that I don’t have the same financial hardship as them, but nothing could be further from the truth. My bills have been piling up for many years while I have been battling my disability.

    So is she correct that I can continue to work this job and not have it effect my trial work period as long as I continue to work here and earn under the SGA?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Cindy Mae,

      Trial Work Periods (TWPs)apply only after you have been disabled for twelve months. The reason is that you have to be disabled or be expected to be disabled for twelve months to be eligible. Your accepted disability date is April 1, 2015, so any work you do after March 31, 2016 will count toward the nine-month Trial Work Period.

      The information you got is not entirely correct. Specifically, it does not matter what jobs or how many different jobs you work, any month after March 31, 2016 that you earn $780 or more will count as a trial work period. The nine months do not have to be consecutive to count. After the end of the TWP (after nine months of earning $780 or more), there is a thirty-six-month extended period of eligibility (EPE) during which you will be paid for any month you do not perform substantial gainful activity (SGA). In 2016, gross earnings of $1,090 is generally considered SGA. If you perform SGA after those thirty-six months, you claim will be terminated. You can read about these rules and work incentives in the Red Book, available at local offices or online at http://www.ssa.gov.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Angelia

    Kay,

    I applied for my son back in July of 2015. I got a call a few months later to set an appointment to come into the office. My appointment is this month. I was just wondering if I can expect to find out whether or not he is approved at this appointment. I am not sure what is going to happen with this. Do they make a decision at the appointment that’s at the office? If not how long after the appointment do you think it will take?

    Best Regards,
    Angelia

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Angelia,

      I believe that your son has been medically approved for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and that the appointment is to go over your family finances since the date of application to determine payment amount for past and ongoing months.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Les

        I have a question, I applied for Disability. I was diagnosed with Progressive RA, spine nerve damage have a permanent neuro-stimulator in my spine, osteopenia, and have nerve damage in my dominant hand, and chronic pain. I applied for Disability in 2013, then found out I applied for SSI which I did not qualify for when I had a court hearing 2014. A Social Security Rep contacted me, and had me apply for Disability. I had to do paperwork all over again. Was denied 3 times, and had to continue to appeal and was also suggested to obtain a lawyer. After 3rd try of appealing, I received a letter from Social Security to see their doctor’s for an examination, in which I did. I had records from this examination also sent to my primary doctor. My doctor received the reports from these doctors and I have not received any correspondence from Social Security. It has already been a month. I called Social Security 1 week prior to my doctor receiving the reports and was informed that it is still under review by the same people who disapproved me 3 times. Should I contact Social Security again or go in person to an office? I worked and worked till I no longer can, and when I became disabled I have to go through all the red tape and filing to receive Disability. I’m not asking for a hand out, I had Social Security deductions taken out of my pay since 1983 to 2014.

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Les,

          It can take a month or more after the consulting doctor’s report is received for a decision to be made. The examiner at the Disability Determination Services who went you the letter asking your to go to the doctor has the most current and accurate information about your claim, so if you inquire again, I suggest phoning that person.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  • Cindy Marie

    Kay,

    I’ve been reading for hours the questions and responses here. I came across several that refer to the onset date.

    My question is when does SSA or DDS inform you if they are changing or disagree with the onset date that you listed? My claim is still at the initial stage and has been sent back to the local social security office, I will be calling them tomorrow to check the status and see see if they need anything else.

    Would they have told me they were changing the onset date when they did the non-medical part of the claim when I applied, or will the onset date be something they review once they get the claim back at the local office?

    Or do I assume it they haven’t said anything, that they accepted my onset date. (all this is assuming I have been approved at the initial stage, of course!)

    No one has said anything about my onset date, so I am curious when does someone find out if they do disagree with you.

    Thanks

    Cindy

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Cindy Marie,

      If your claim is approved with a later onset date that you claimed, you will receive a notice of partially favorable decision. You can then either accept the date or appeal. The reason for a later date being accepted is lack of medical documentation for the date claimed, but enough documentation for a later date. The onset decision is part of the medical review decision. If the claim is approved on initial application or reconsideration, you would be notified by letter. If the claim is approved at a hearing, usually the judge asks whether you will accept a later date.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Alan

    Hi, I filed my initial claim in March 2014 and I receievd a denial letter in April 2014. I retained an attorney to help me with my appeal and was sent for an IME almost 4 weeks ago. I am a 49 year old male..I have had 3 microdeiscectomies on L4 -L5 & L5- S1. I do suffer from foot drop and do have days where I can’t get around too easily and other days I am doing ok.. I also have DDD, facet arthropathy and spinal stenosis. Do u have any idea how long it will take to get an answer on my case at this point? Thanks

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Alan,

      The consulting physician has three weeks to submit a report and the holidays have intervened so it could be another month or six weeks before you get a decision.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Cindy Marie

    Hi Kay,

    I just called DDS to inquire about the status of my claim. I was told that my claim had been pulled for a quality review and that they agreed with the decision made by the examiner/medical experts.

    She told me the claim was being sent this morning to my local Social Security Office as a priority claim and to check with them in a few days.

    What exactly is a priority claim?

    Could the fact that she told me my claim was being sent back to the local office as a priority claim indicate that I have (will) receive a favorable decision?

    If a priority claim is favorable does that mean payments will start sooner compared to other claims or is the wording priority claim mean nothing at all?

    Thanks for your help!

    Cindy

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Cindy,

      If you didn’t file a statement of dire need, then your claim may have been sent as priority because of the delay caused by the quality assurance review. The implication of “priority” is that another action is required, which presumably would be to pay the claim. So, my cautious opinion is that your claim has been medically approved.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Tami Ham

        My sister law I am helping with her claim, we filed last April 15, she can not get any decision and now the dr. They sent her to has lost her paperwork. She is in Dire need, has zero income relying on others to just survive, living with whom ever she can stay with. Has no place to live, homeless. We have gotten all her records in did all appointments and still no response. They will not even return a phone call, any ideas what I can do to help at least get a first denial do she can get an attorney. She is almost 51.

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Tami,

          I suggest finding out what is being done about the “lost” paperwork. Is a new exam being scheduled? If you do not get any fairly concrete answers, I suggest that your sister-in-law contact her congressperson’s office to do an inquiry. Nine months is too long for a claim to pend.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  • niecey

    hello kay,

    I am 24 years old, I have been suffering from psoriasis since at least the age of eleven. It has worsen over the years. I haven’t worked in over six months, before then I only worked three months. I am very uncomfortable working in public due to my psoriasis appearing all over my face which also causes my joints to ache. I have been to dermatologist, nothing is helping, medication often irritate. I was wondering do you think I have a claim for SSI?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Niecey,

      If you are able to work, you are not disabled. I suggest that you contact a rheumatologist for an evaluation to see whether you have psoriatic arthritis and, if so, to get the doctor’s opinion on what your limitations and restrictions are. You might also see a therapist to help you cope with your feelings about your appearance. Information from these medical professionals might help you decide whether you can or cannot work and whether or not to file a claim. And, of course, if you do, it will provide some documentation for your claim.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Barb

    Hi Kay,
    I’m a 56 year old female. Have worked since I was 17. Most recent job 15 years . Laid off since business closed.
    I applied for disability 12/07/15 on line. Reason being severe anxiety been going on for years. I was very detailed with application. Also a detailed list of Mr doctors. I received a call from disability office asking if I was working. I said no. She said she is sending records on to main office.
    Are my chances better since I’m 56? Also I’m on unemployment. I need income? I have been offered jobs. I worked at one since last layoff. But I could not function? Should I try to work? What is the income limit? How long before the initial decision? Thank you, Barb

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Barb,

      Be sure to let Social Security know that you had an unsuccessful work attempt after the disability date you are claiming. Unemployment does not affect a disability claim. Earnings of less than $1,090 are not likely to affect your claim. It takes two to five months to get a disability decision.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Kay,

    Thank you. I applied locally here in Tx. 3 months went by and I couldn’t get a call back regarding my claim for early progression dementia (I am 50 yo). I finally went to Cleburne and they gave me additional paperwork asking for my work history over the last 5 years (along w all my Taxes for each year) Gave me 15 days to return it and a new Claim Rep. 2 more months went by and my status shows pending a decision but now with DDS Tx. Have Note from my General Physician confirming problems working & genetic , grandmother (passed of Alzheimers , mom is no in stage 6/7 dementia, was diagnosed at 54 yo. Had I not proactively physically gone to the Cleburne office I am not sure if I would still be wondering. But anyway it looks like it is with the state of Tx.. I guess. Totally frustrated as I have no idea how much longer it takes. Thank you for any insight. God Bless

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear John,

      Expect two to five months for a medical decision.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Daisy

    Hi I just wanted to know I apply Monday online Friday I got a letter to go in to the ssi office. And to bring the list of things they ask but they only asking for a bank statement why is this

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Daisy,

      You have apparently applied for Supplemental Security Income (SSI), which is a public assistance program. SSI applications have to be completed in a local office and part of the application is to provide information about the resources you have including money in bank accounts.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Cindy Marie

        Thank you so much for the information!

        • Kay Derochie

          You are welcome, Cindy.

  • Cindy Marie

    My SSDI is at the initial application stage. It has been sent to DDS. I received a letter saying that they would be requesting medical information. I had it all and sent it to them. They received it. I called and asked if they needed anything else and I was told no, they had all the information they needed. How long on average does it take to get a decision once DDS has everything they need?

    Also I called today and found out my adjudicator is on vacation for 2 weeks. Does this mean my case will just sit until they get back from vacation? Or will my case/claim go to someone else? If my case will just sit, will it take priority over new cases when the adjudicator comes back from vacation? any incite would be greatly appreciated

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Cindy Marie,

      Your claim most likely will not be worked on while your claims examiner is out of the office. Its priority will not change because all claims assigned to the examiner will also be waiting for his or her return. The review after all information is in can take a week or two or a month or two. It depends on how many cases had completing information come in before yours.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Michelle

    I applied for disability 4 months ago and never heard anything back so I called them today and they said my application is under special review what does that mean and how long does it take?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Michelle,

      It could mean that a decision was made on your claim and then the claim was randomly picked for a quality assurance review to see if the correct decision was arrived at in the correct way.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • SB

    I was recently diagnosed with MS after seeing my primary care physician who sent me to a Neurologist after an abnormal MRI who sent me back to my PC doctor for another MRI to Dx MS or rule it out. After the second MRI I was diagnosed. I also have neuropathy in both arms, my right leg and in my spine as well as chronic migraines, numbness/tingling/twitching in my hands, fatigue, bad short term and some long term memory and weakness. I just applied for SSD and am wondering if I qualify. I am not sure which type of MS I have at this point, I have an appointment with a different neurology team in January for a treatment plan and probably more tests. I wear a back brace and wrist brace and have trouble even putting my shoes on as well as a lot of pain in my arms, leg and back. I am unable to drive long distances because of this and my medication makes me unable to drive at times as well. I have enough work credits for disability however I have been working on my bachelors degree for 3 years now so the fact I will be unable to do what I was planning on doing is highly disappointing.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear SB,

      There is a possibility that you will qualify for benefits. If no decision is made by the time you have the results of your January appointments, be sure to update your claim with the January information.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Mary W

    Hi Kay, Can you please tell me the difference (if there is one) between DDS and the Hearing office.

    Thank you

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Mary,

      The Disability Determination Services (DDS) is the office that makes medical decisions for Social Security and SSI new claims and reconsideration appeals. The Hearing Office handles second appeals that are decided by an Administration Law Judge typically after a hearing.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Mary W

        I had a hearing already can I find out different information from the DDS than the hearing office or at this point which one would have better/more accurate information.

        Thanks for you time.
        Mary

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Mary,

          Your appeal is now at the hearing level, so the hearing office will have the information, not the DDS.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

          • Mary W

            Thank You for your reply, sorry about the duplicate questions they didn’t seem to post on my computer. thank you so much.
            Mary W

            • Kay Derochie

              You are welcome, Mary.

  • Mary W

    Hi Kay, I went before the ALJ. At the end of the VE testimony the Judge asked her if any of the jobs would allow me to work from a reclined position, lay down for 1 to 2 hours a day, or miss two days of work per month. She answered no to all. My attorneys were very happy and told the judge they had no more question after the 3 answers. I was determined to be disabled in the line of duty by the state I lived in. But I am scared to death of a denial. I have not worked since 2013, credit is maxed and not sure how to afford living from here. Please tell me your opinion. Thank You

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Mary,

      If the judge accepts that your limitations and restrictions are as severe as you have claimed, with the vocational expert’s testimony it is likely your claim will be approved.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Mary W

        Thank You for your reply.

        • Kay Derochie

          You are welcome, Mary

    • ms.t

      Hi, I applied on 1/4/2015. Ive been off work since 10/15/2014 which I put as my onset date. I been diagnosed with arthritis on my knee, and degenerative disc on my back, also with depression, ptsd and anxiety. How likely will I be approved? Also what happens if the dds can not get medical documents from 1 out 6 doctors?

      Thank you,
      Ms.t

      • Kay Derochie

        Dear Ms. T.,

        I cannot predict whether you will be approved. It will depend on the severity of the symptoms from your diagnoses, your work history and education and, to a degree, your age. If one doctor won’t release records and there’s enough information in file to make a decision, they will do so. If not, they will likely send you to a consultative examination. You can request a copy of your records yourself, if the doctor’s office doesn’t want to release to the Social Security Administration, although you would like have to pay for the copying cost.

        Note that if you mean your initial claim has been pending since January 2015, as you stated, not January 2016, it has been pending too long and you should make an inquiry as to the cause. If you do not have a decision a month after your inquiry, you might contact your congressperson’s office to see to ask them to follow up.

        Sincerely,
        Kay

  • Hello, my son was diagnosed with Aspergers a year ago. We’ve applied for disability for him due to the issues he has as a result of Aspergers. I was curious how long it typically takes to get a response and if it was likely that he’d be approved??

    Thanks,
    Jill

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Jill,

      A new claim should not pend for a year. You need to check with the Disability Determination Services (DDS) that is doing the medical review for Social Security to be sure that the claim is still pending and that a letter of denial did not go out in the past and somehow didn’t reach you. If it is still pending, inquire what is needed to move to a decision, specifically if there is anything you can provide.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • denise

        Hello I have a question I am helping my sister with her claim and her Doctor visits and more. She is waiting for a decision from the appeals court since last June in 2015 she has Dementia and has already been denied 2 times before. I don’t understand it when she was let go from her job in 2015 of January because her health had declined and she was unable to remember her duties at work let alone at home. It is like taking care of a 3 or 4 year old and she is 53 years of age she has no income and I am barely getting by. I am in need of help for my sister and resources in the mean time we live in apple valley, California.

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Denise,

          I suggest that you contact your local branch of California’s social services department to find out whether there is any temporary assistance for your sister while the Appeals Council review pends. If the two of you are living together and sharing food, you may be eligible for SNAP (formerly called food stamps). If the Council denies the appeal, you can appeal in District Court, which will require a filing fee. Your sister might also be able to file a new claim with a claimed disability date that is after the Appeals Council Review. (Check this with the Social Security Administration. While new evidence cannot be submitted with the District Court appeal, a new claim could be documented with any worsening of her condition. Should you need to do that, I would advise that your sister have a cognitive workup to document the extent of her limitations due to dementia. You could also submit a statement from her last employer regarding why she was let go–specifically observations of what she could not remember.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  • Sue

    Hello. I was diagnosed with Stage 4 cancer four months ago. My retired parents had always had my brother and me on their bank account so that if they died, they could pass on whatever money was left to us. After my diagnosis, my Mom said I should apply for SSI, and she closed the bank account and opened a new one so that my name would not be on it. Many seem to find this unethical, but this is their retirement money, the only money they have to fall back on, and they are not wealthy people. Now that I am sick, unable to work, and do not qualify for SSDI, I dread the thought of bankrupting my parents. If I apply for SSI, will there be a problem because of the closed account? Is there a set period of time for the account to have been closed for me to qualify for SSI, or will I qualify for it now no matter when the account was closed? Thank you for your time.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Sue,

      The best way to approach this is to file for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and get a formal decision. Answer all the questions honestly and see what happens.

      Usually disposing of funds that could have been used for your support will cause you to be ineligible for SSI benefits for a period of time. However, it is possible that specific circumstances can change this. In this case, the funds were taken away from you in that it was not your decision to close the account and to move the money to where you did not have access. You should provide that information in your interview. If you never had the account number to be able to access the account, you can include that information also as well as your parents not making the money available to you until their deaths. If the account is treated as disposal of resources, the amount in the account divided by $733 will be the number of future months that you will be ineligible.

      Note that if you have no health insurance, try applying for Medicaid at a state or county social services office. If that is not successful, you can apply for medical insurance during the open enrollment period under the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The open enrollment begins in November and insurance will be effective in January. You may be eligible for Medicaid that way or for a premium subsidy for other insurance. More information is available at http://www.healthcare.gov.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Robert Silva

    Hello,

    I applied for SSD in August of this year. I was diagnosed with complex partial seizures (epilepsy), which have not been controlled. I have a M.Ed. and was a teacher for 14 years until December 2012 when I was unable to perform my duties anymore (people thinking I was drunk or high, forgetful of students….) My then neurologist said I was ok to drive, but I crashed my car into a building and was arrested for criminal damage. I was no longer able to live alone in Arizona, so I moved to Mexico City to marry my husband. I had my interview with the SSA office at the Embassy here, and she sent the information in. I am in worse shape. I have seizures several times a week, cannot go out alone, and get severe migraines. The question is, I was in an Epilepsy Monitoring Unit in Phoenix, but they never caught an episode on EEG, just nurse notes upon admission. Will being in Mexico City affect the length of consideration? What are your thoughts?

    I appreciate your time.

    Rob

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Robert,

      How long your claim will pend and how sucessful it will be depends on how well you document your claim and how quickly that documentation is submitted. I assume you are under a doctor’s care in Mexico. Be sure to get those records submitted. If they are in Spanish, have a translator translate the notes and send both the Spanish and English. Also, write a statement that includes the information that you gave me and get statements from former supervisors or co-workers or others who have witnessed the seizures or the on-the-job symptoms you describe.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Robert Silva

        Thank you, Kay for the information. I have already begun gathering it. I had an interview with a woman at the SSA office of the US Embassy here in August. When I get this information, should I make another appoint to give her the documentation?

        Thank you; have a great day!

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Robert,

          I think you do have to submit everything through your embassy contact; however, if that is not the case, she should be able to tell you how to submit it.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

      • Taeleen

        I was just tested positive for HIV, my question is if I take my results to social security today will I be able to receive my benefits within the first month of applying, and if so will I get back payments for when I applied a couple of years ago due to a mental illness

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Taeleen,

          Testing positive for HIV does not necessarily mean that you are disabled. You will have to file a claim, and it can take two to five months for a decision. No benefits would be paid until you were approved. If you are approved, benefits will be paid based on the current application only, none on the prior application.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  • Seeley

    Hello, I applied for SSDI in May for depression, anxiety, bipolarism. My adjudicator recieved my case in June and I was sent for a mental eval in Aug 26 because the 2 psychiatrist I had seen (1 only 1 visit the other 3 visits) never sent back any paperwork. They recieved the report from the SSDI psycologist Sept 3.My case is still pending. I need to add that when I saw the SSDI psycologist she was very concerned about my reaction time and strongly suggested that I be admitted into an intreatment mental facility so I can start treatment. She kept saying she was concerned about my state of being and I should have started treatment a long time ago. I started crying during my exam because she was asking questions about my childhood which still affects me today. So I was in a not so good mood by the time I left and I didn’t ask her anything about if she thought I would get approved for SSDI but she did mention that I had major depression and a case of Postpardum depression because my baby was only 1 month old at the time. Based on the SSDI’s Dr.’s comments do you think I would be approved for SSDI? I have worked since 16 and am now 34 and have enough credits for myself and dependents to recieve benefits if approved.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Seeley,

      I can’t predict whether you will be approved; however, it would appear that the physician’s report will verify that you have symptoms and limitations. The question would be how limited are you by your underlying depression versus the postpartum depression that would not be expected to last a year, which is required to get Social Security Disability.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      Sinc

  • My husband suffered a ruptured brain aneurysm and stroke on Feb 23rd of this year. He had a neuropsychological evaluation done in August that indicated he has short-term memory issues and attention issues. It recommended he not drive or work for an unspecified period of time. He has worked as a duct work installer for all his life. He does not have a high school diploma. He is currently 56 years old. I applied for SSD on 3/13….seven monthss later and I still have not heard anything. What should I do next? Last time we called I was told the “callback” date was 10/17/15 – not sure what that means.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Richard,

      Often in cases of stroke, a decision will be deferred to see how much a person will improve over a period of time. This is done because to receive benefits a person has to be disabled or be expected to be disabled for twelve months. When you call back on October 17, describe your husband’s current limitations and ask if updated medical information is needed to document his current condition.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • rosita

        Hello Kay,
        I have a question I’m 19 years old I was born with vons willebrand diseases which means my blood doesn’t clot and due to it i have been needed iron transfusions becuase of my bleeding disorder i got sever anemia and I have a bipolar disorder and I have siezures I applied last week and I checked on my status today and it says a decision has been made but I haven’t received anything in the mail is a fast decision bad or good? Thanks

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Rosita,

          Usually a denial would not be reached so fast; however, there is no way to know for sure until you get the written decision.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

      • Amanda

        Hi, my son is 8 months developmentally delayed he is receiving services from the counties CDSA. Physical therapy and occupational therapy 4 times a week. He was evaluated and scores in the 3 month and 4 month range. At the time he was 7 months 5 days away from turning 8 months. I applied July 31,2015 what is his chances of being approved?

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Amanda,

          I think there is a reasonably good chance your son could be approved.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

      • ashlynn

        Hi this ashlynn again also wanted to no about my case I was on ssi when I was young then when I got in dhs they stop it so now I’m trying to get back on it as of June 2015 until September 2015 I have hhd learning problem attention -deficit/hyperactivity disorder combined presentation anxiety mood history of asthma do you think I would get it back again

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Ashlynn,

          Disability law for adults is different than for children, so I can predict whether you will approved.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

    • teresa

      It took me three years to get approved once I filed my ititial application. They cheated me out of all my back pay.

  • Tamikia N Beaton

    Hi was told my claim was sent to the automatic departments and is being reviewed by the doctor is that good or news cause every time I call seem,like I’m being told something different.

  • Andrew Kane

    Hi, my dad is 50 years old has had 1 knee replacement and needs another. He has high BP low O2 and also suffers from sleep apnea & possibly narcolepsy. He has already started the application process but he wants to move from Illinois to Colorado with me his oldest son. He doesn’t want to move until he gets his disability. My question is would he be able to transfer all this to Colorado or inform them that he has move instead of having to start everything over. Thanks

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Andrew,

      Yes, your father can have his claim transferred to Colorado and the transfer shouldn’t cause much of a delay because it sounds as if the medical review has not begun or has just begun.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Susan Richmeier

    Hello. I was diagnosed with Stage IV breast cancer in June. I knew I did not have enough work credits to qualify for SSDI, but with our very limited income and a diagnosis that is included on the “compassionate allowance” list, I applied for SSI two weeks ago. Today I received a Notice of Disapproved Claim, stating that I did not quality because I have not worked long enough. And I know for a fact that my oncologist’s office only today received the materials needed for verification of my diagnosis. So does this letter I received apply ONLY to SSDI, and will I receive a second letter with regard to the SSI? The letter also states “You are not due any other Social Security benefits”. Will this change when they receive the medical information from my doctor? Should I file an appeal now or wait for another letter to come about SSI? Thank you so much. -Susan

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Susan,

      The Notice of Disapproved Claim applies only to your Social Security Disability claim, not to your Supplemental Security Income (SSI) claim. The sentence saying that you are not due other Social Security benefits is saying you aren’t currently eligible for Social Security retirement, survivors, or dependent benefits. SSI is not a Social Security benefit, so the letter is not referencing SSI.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Susan Richmeier

        Thank you SO much! Everything is so confusing and it’s hard to find specific information online, even within the SSA’s own documents. Thanks for this wonderful website and for responding so quickly. My level of anxiety has just dropped immensely! -Susan

        • Kay Derochie

          You are welcome, Susan.

  • Sherry

    I was recently approved for SSDI. I had to go before an ADJ judge. In a letter to advise of a favorable decision, it stated my file had been sent to NEPSC DPB, NEPSC Disability Processing in Jamaica Mew York for processing of payment. I live in Florida so why was my SSDI file sent to a Social Security payment Center in New York for processing?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Sherry,

      There are only a few payment centers, not one in every state.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • James

    Dear Kay,

    I am currently receiving 80% disability right now from the Veterans Association for problems caused by my two deployments (PTSD, Sleep Apnea, Knee Problems, Hiatal Hernia, Plantar Fasciitis, etc). I have two army buddies that keep telling me I should apply for SSDI since the VA benefits don’t even cover my monthly bills. Do you think this is a good course of action for me, or will I just be denied since I already receive disability benefits from the VA?

    Sincerely,
    James

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear James,

      I agree with your friend that you should apply for Social Security Disability (SSDI). You can receive both SSDI and VA compensation benefits. You do not say how long you have been disabled, but if it has been seventeen months or more, start the application before the end of the month to avoid possible loss of benefits. You can start the application online at http://www.ssa.gov. You can find tips on filing a claim in the articles under the “Apply SSD” tab on the navigation bar of this website.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • James

        Dear Kay,

        Thank you for your response. I was approved for VA disability in February, but applied for it back in August. I was back paid to August and one additional year because of permanent damage to one of my organs. Does that mean that it has been longer than 17 months, or do they only count back to when I initially applied for VA benefits?

        Sincerely,
        James

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear James,

          The countdown starts with the month you became disabled (not when you applied for VA benefits or were approved for VA benefits). If you became disabled more than seventeen months ago or longer, you should start your application today so that, if you are approved, you will not lose a month of retroactive benefits. You can read about Social Security’s definition of disability under the “SSD Basic Facts” tab on the navigation bar of this website.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

      • robert

        I have 3broking fingers a broken jaw and Restless leg syndrome do you think that I qualify

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Robert,

          To be eligible for Social Security or Supplemental Security Income, you have to be disabled or expect to be disabled for twelve months, so it seems unlikely you would be considered disabled under those two programs. You might check to see whether your state or your employer has a short-term disability program.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  • Angie

    Hi Kay, I have applied for my ssi this year, I have been seen by many doctors, counselors, and a psychologist so I have a lot of medical evidence stating that I am disabled. The psychologist even noted that I have a low iq score and 6 mental impairments also physical impairments and noted that It is recommended that I pursue my ssi. I have a lot of health issues and haven’t worked since 2010. I am kind of worried because I applied on the 19th of June of this year and the state agency said I should be getting a letter here in 5 days. Is it a bad thing with getting the results that quickly?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Angie,

      How long a claim pends is not an indication of whether the claim will be approved or denied.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Natasha

    My husband had a stroke last year, in September. I applied for SSDI on May 2,2015 using a lawyer. I’m still getting requests for paperwork from DDS. He has major speech issues and cannot use his right arm or right foot. I assumed this would be pretty quick since the damage is pretty obvious. How much longer can it take?
    Also, my lawyer said that my two minor children will also get disability – is that true?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Natasha,

      It can take two to five months for an initial claim decision. Also the claims examiner may be waiting to see how much your husband improves within a period of twelve months because disability must last twelve months or be expected to last twelve month for approval.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Samantha

    Kay, I have applied for SSI in feb 2015 I then met with an assigned DR on May16th Since then the website states that my claim has been in the states medical review process portion. How long does this process take? Is 2 months normal once my claim reaches this processing point.
    Thanks, Samanth

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Samantha,

      Processing times vary quite a bit depending on workloads at the time. I suggest that you call the examiner and politely inquire whether he or she received the consultative examination report (mentioning the date of the exam) and, if so, what else needs to be done before a decision can be reached and roughly when can you expect that decision.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • I was unfavored for my seizures nd have reapplied.I know it takes time to process,But as I wait I still have them and worry I may not get them or have worked enough.Mine are life threatning and getting worse.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Andy,

      If you have a question, please post it and I will try to answer.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Gloria

        Hi, Kay. I am 66 years old and, I have a couple of questions. I took early retirement at 62 yrs old back in 2011.
        In March of 2013, I applied for Disability.
        In June of 2015, I had a hearing, the Decision was Fully Favorable.
        My question is; How will my monthly Social Security Retirement check be affected? Also, the ALJ agreed with the date I had applied for disability back in March 2013. Will I also receive Back Pay? I appreciate your time regarding this matter.

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Gloria,

          Your status and benefits will be changed from early retirement to disability beginning September 2013 (if your established disability date is in March 2013). You will receive back pay equal to the difference between the reduced retirement and the disability rates. Then when you reach full retirement age you will be switched back to retirement benefits, which will be less than the full disability rate but more than the original reduced retirement benefit because the ongoing retirement benefit will be reduced for the reduction months from 2011 until your disability benefits started.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

          • Gloria

            Kay, thank you for getting back to me. You have clarified my concerns. I appreciate your quick response.
            One other thing however, I am at full retirement age right now, I’m 66. Does this mean my early retirement benefits will actually become full retirement benefits? In other words, will I receive more monthly as if I haven’t been getting early retirement benefits?
            Thank you kindly.

            • Kay Derochie

              Dear Gloria,

              Based on the information you gave in your prior post, your retirement benefit at full retirement will be reduced at a rate of 5/9s of 1% for each month of reduced retirement benefits that were not later changed to disability benefits. This means your retirement benefits age sixty-six and following will be less than your disability benefits but more than your previous reduced retirement.

              Sincerely,
              Kay

          • Gloria

            Hi again, Kay.
            How is the disability rate vs. early retirement rate figured? Again, thank you!

            • Kay Derochie

              Dear Gloria,

              Please see my response to your second post.

              Thank you,
              Kay

      • ashlynn

        Hi my name is ashlymm I want to no how long it take for the ima to approve my daughter she went 9/24/2015 I applied in June 2015 how long does it take

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Ashlynn,

          Please clarify for me what you mean by “ima” and I will try to respond.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  • jamie

    hi kay my question is if i was told that my medical portion of my claim was passed or approved….does this most likely mean i will be approved for my ssdi benefits? she said she would send me out a letter and that now there just waiting on the rest i dont know if she meant my finances and work credits? although i know i have enough….she asked had anyone contacted me to come into the office?or called me….so i dont know here i guess im kinda mind boggled! or she just pretty much told me in her best way that my case was approved!

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Jamie,

      I think that you have been found disabled and that you filed claims for both Social Security Disability (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI). For the SSDI claim you have to have sufficient work credits to be paid. For the SSI claim, your income and assets have to be below a certain limit. If you applied for both, you will be asked to visit the office to update information about your income and assets for months since you applied. Then the SSI benefits will be paid. After that your Social Security claim will be reviewed and authorized for payment by a central payment center. The back SSDI will be reduced by SSI paid for the same period.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • jamie

        thanks so much for your help kay… also i wanted to ask you..when i first signed up in feb 2015 a woman called me and asked me questions about myself…and asked did i want to sign up for ssi also and i asked her should i and she said she would go ahead but didnt think i would be eligible. so when you said if i recieve benefits my ssdi would be reduced by the ssi i would recieve…does that mean i would get ssi benefits before my full ssdi benefits? the kind lady i spoke with thee other day said she would sent me an explanation about what was happening and i would recieve it within 7 days and wished me goodluck also is it common for the online ssa site to just say the medical portion of your claim is still being processed and nothing for estimated benefits ..just my earnings? thankyou

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Jamie,

          I was providing general information in response to your question, not indicating that you are financially eligible for SSI. I was just describing what would happen if you were eligible for both SSDI and SSI. If you are eligible for both, yes, the SSI will be paid first.I believe that estimated benefits only show up at the point authorization for payment is being made.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

          • jamie

            oh okay i see..well thankyou very much for your help kay. i will keep everyone posted on here of my outcome when i hear something back..hopefully soon! have a great day

            • Kay Derochie

              You are welcome, Jamie, and thank you.

          • jamie

            hello kay jamie here again with a few questions…from the ssa site it seems that i have been awarded my benefits for ssdi..in the amount of 1,187…also i spoke with someone and it looks as if im recieving a one time payment of 2,199 and from what i gather thats for ssi. and there is also now another one time payment coming of 244.35…i was told that being that my ssdi would most likley kick in in august then i most likley would not recieve another ssi payment…and i still have yet to get my ssdi for the months of june and here july! will those checks kick in after the ssdi kicks in the 2nd wednesday of august as stated?also when i first applied for ssdi the first time was that of april 28th 2013 and the second time was febuary 2015 and the letter i recieved says my onset date was december of 2014 how is this im not quite understanding? can you help answer please?

            • Kay Derochie

              Dear Jamie,

              The Social Security Disability (SSDI) benefit that you will receive in August is your July benefit (August’s benefit will be paid in September and so on) and apparently is the first monthly SSDI benefit. That makes June’s benefit back pay. It may be another month or two before you receive the June SSDI back pay and it will be reduced by the SSI paid for the June.

              Sincerely,
              Kay

          • jamie

            hi kay jamie again…my question to you was if my onset date is for dec 2014 and they hold 5 mos then wouldnt my ssdi checks be for may thru now or august when they say ill recieve my 1st payment? and if i first applied in april 2013 my first time and then re applied in feb of 2015 why would i have an on set date of dec 2014 how is that? please help answer this if u can thanks

            • Kay Derochie

              Dear Jamie,

              Your disability onset date is the date Social Security says that your disability is supported by evidence. It is not related to the application date. The five-month waiting period is full calendar months–no partial months–so January through May are unpaid waiting-period months.

              Sincerely,
              Kay

  • Rose

    Can I get approved for ssa or ssdi for having macular dystrophy and also I fall under the legally blind statutory. I am diabetic type 1 metillus poorly controlled blood sugar had a stroke associated with grand mal seizures. Age group 25-30

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Rose,

      It sounds as if you are medically eligible for Social Security Disability (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI). For SSDI, you also have to have enough work including work in the past ten years to be eligible. For SSI, your income and assets have to fall below a certain limit. I suggest that you file a claim if you are not working or are working and earning less than $1,090 gross per month.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Betty

    I am a 54 y/o female who had a heart attack in July of 2014. I still have some blockages that will be addressed in the future as the need arises. I also have multiple heart issues ie…CHF, low EF etc. I was also diagnosed with diverticulitis a few months later. Due to multiple ER visits and these illness, it was suggested that I apply for Disability. I have not been able to work since my heart attack. I applied in Jan 2015 and it has been in medical review for almost a month. How much longer should I expect it to take before I get an answer? My doctors says they will not release me to return to any type of work because of my condition.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Betty,

      Initial disability claims take from two to five months to process.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • jeff

    i filled back in december 2104 got a lawyer straight off the bat went to there doctor and the pscho doctor i have degerating disc in my neck that is supressing on nerves to the point were i have shakiness weak legs and numbness in hands also arthritis in lower part of back i have sugar i have still not heard on my first letter yet when do you think i will hear something or so you think i will even qualify

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Jeff,

      I recommend that you call the Disability Determination Services that sent you to the consultative examinations to find out the status of the claim. If they say they have completed their part, ask the date of completion. Then contact your local Social Security office to find out if your Social Security claim has been forwarded to the payment center for review and payment. If it has not and the claim has been denied, go on record with them that you did not receive a denial letter and request a copy of the letter. The sixty-day appeals period should begin with the date that you get the duplicate letter.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Raquel Vasquez

    Hello my father has been waiting for his disability approval for 4 years already he has done 1 appealings and he just got denied about 2 weeks ago on a second appealing due to the secretary of his lawyer not gathering information from an accident he had more than 15 years ago. How much longer can this take???

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Raquel,

      If your father files an appeal with the Appeals Council, it can take from several months to two years to get a decision from the Council.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Raquel Vasquez

        Thanks for your response. When he went to the last appeal, the joys die told him that everything was approved that he just needed the documents from his accident from 15 years ago because it had erased from the system. Will it still take the same amount as far time to get completely approved. Thanks for this website and for taking time to answer our questions.

        • Raquel Vasquez

          Sorry I meant judge told him.

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Raquel,

          You are welcome. I can’t estimate how long it will take the judge to complete the review and issue a decision after he or she receives the documentation from the accident because many factors, including current workload, affect processing time. You can call the hearing office every three or four weeks to see where the decision is in the process.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  • Janet

    I applied for SSDI but got denied in January 2015. I obtained a lawyer after I appealed. Lawyer told me that I have a good case and have many things wrong with me. She told me it takes a good 9 months to go get a court date, go to court for the appeal case. I was wondering since I put the claim in Sept 2014 and I know once I win the case the money gets retroactive back to the actual month / year the claim was put in but my question is how soon after you win the appeal do you see the money? Lawyer said that SSA turned me down for the same thing that they approved me 20 some yrs ago and yet my hearing loss has gotten worse since along with more health problems I now got from CRS (Congenital Rubella Syndrome causing late manifestation). She said it doesn’t look great for SSA to do this to me 20 yrs later.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Janet,

      It can take sixty to ninety days for the payments to start after you receive a written favorable decision from the judge.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Paula

    I applied for SSD and SSI in Nov 2014. I have pulmonary arterial hypertension. And congestive heart failure. I called Disability Determination Services and they told me that they were done with their part of it back in January. I went to the local office last week and the rep fold me that I was approved for both disability and SSI and that it hasn’t been finalized yet. How long does this take? She couldn’t give me an answer. I explained to her that I was in danger of getting my electric turned off. Things are getting really tough. How long can I expect this to take.
    Thanks!

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Paula,

      The SSI will be paid before your Social Security Disability is paid. The local office authorizes SSI payment. After that then the central payment center authorizes payment of the Social Security claim reducing Social Security back pay by SSI already paid for overlapping months. Call Social Security at 1-800-=772-1213; say that your claim was medically approved in January and you want to make an appointment for the financial update interview for you SSI claim. They will send your request to the local office. If you don’t have an appointment set up by June 10, go into the office and ask to see a claims representative (not a service rep) to get your medically approved SSI started.

      In the meantime, contact the electric company and tell them you have just been approved for Social Security Disability and are awaiting payment. Ask if they have any power assistance for disabled individuals that would pay your bill till you receive benefits. If not, ask if they can leave your electricity on because you will have money to catch up the bill in a month or two when you get your back pay.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • William Byers

    Dear Kay
    I applied for the Disabled Adult Child Program from Social Security on April 23, 2015 i am 19 and getting ready to go to technical school. I applied cause I have seizures but I haven’t had one in a while because of the medicine i take is controlling it and I was wondering if you had any advice about getting approved

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear William,

      It is possible that you claim will be denied if your seizures have been controlled for a substantial period of time. Retroactivity is limited to twelve months before application and you must be disabled twelve months to be approved, so a one-time payment for a closed period of disability does not seem likely.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • markell roy

        Dear Kay,

        I Applied For Ssi On July 23 2015 The Next Day A Woman Called Me Back & Told Me I Am Eligible For ssi. & Asked Alot Of Questions.. Then a day later she sent this packet in the mail. And basically it was a review of all my information.. told me if nothing was wrong to keep the packet .. and if something was wrong with the information contact them.. im 19 with hiv and i was wondering how long does it usually take for a case like this to Get Approved & start receiving payments

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Markell,

          I believe that you have been approved based on presumptive disability, which means given your diagnosis and related information it is presumed that you are disabled. You will be paid provisionally until a full review of your claim has been made and it is determined that the presumption of disability is correct. At that point, you will be moved from presumptive to determined disability status. (The benefits are the same.) As fast as things have moved so far, I would say that your benefits will start within a month.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  • Melissa Arrington

    I have had 3 heart attacks, triple bypass surgery, subsequent irreparable bypass failure, spondylethesis at L5 S1, CHF, Fibromyalgia, and sleep apnea. I applied through a lawyer in 01/15 after quitting work due to excessive pain. Saw the SSD appointed Dr in 4/15. He stated I would require lifelong medical treatment. Talked to the DD caseworker on 5/26 and was told she was forwarding my packet to the medical reviewer. What timeframe am I looking at now? And is the Dr’s statement a good indicator of a positive outcome?
    Thanks!

    • Melissa Arrington

      Oh well, I just received a denial of benefits stating that though I am unable to perform any of my prior jobs due to my age I am able to work.

      • Kay Derochie

        Dear Melissa,

        Please see my response of a few minutes ago to your earlier post. I suggest that you request a copy of your complete claim file so you can read the decision memo. If you disagree with the facts used or the reasons for the denial, you can appeal within the sixty-day appeal period. If you decide to appeal, I recommend that you hire a Social Security lawyer to assist you. 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

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Melissa,

      I would expect you to get a decision within a month or six weeks. The doctor’s statement does not reveal much because people can require lifelong medical treatment and still be able to work. The outcome of your claim will depend on how severely your conditions limit you.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Meredith

    Hello Kay,
    I’ve been diagnosed with bipolar, anxiety, and depression. The bipolar was diagnosed in March of last year. March-October, I had 3 psychiatric hospitalizations and 2 medical hospitalizations (suicide attempts) for the disorders. I’ve been on 7-9 various medications since and seeing a psychiatrist and therapist regularly. I applied Jan 19 and the SS rep on the phone said they had all the medical records (tons and tons of records), plus we sent in the function reports months ago. It’s been over 4 months now. Do you have any idea what might be going on/ what my chances for being approved are/ what I can do? Finances are really problematic right now and I’m in no position to work.
    Thanks.

    • Meredith

      I was also diagnosed and am taking medicine for fibromyalgia since Jan of this year (that’s in my claim and they also have records from my rheumatologist). I have no idea if my psychiatrist/therapist/rheumatologist said I was ok to work, but they all have diagnosed me and are treating me.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Meredith,

      I would think that you would be getting a decision fairly soon; claims are running two to five months. You can call and politely say that your financial situation is getting dire and ask whether the examiner can predict when you will get a decision.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Meredith

        Thank you. If i do happen to get approved, can my husband and 2 yr old child receive benefits? How do I apply for them? We’ve been married 3 yrs but he works… I can’t figure it out.

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Meredith,

          If you are approved for Social Security Disability with an earnings history high enough to provide a family maximum benefit greater than your own benefit, your child will receive benefits on your record. Be sure you listed the child on the original application and when you know you have been approved, check with the local office to be sure that processing of the child’s claim is underway.

          With regard to your husband, if your family maximum is greater than your and your child’s benefits combined, then your husband could potentially receive some benefits, depending on how high his earnings are. Currently, the first $15,720 a year gross earnings will not reduce benefits. Any earnings above that will result in a one-dollar reduction in annual benefits for each two dollars over the limit.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  • Bridget

    Hello Kay
    My husband was born with myelomeningocele spina bifida he has also recently had an MRI that showed he has herniated disc’s & deteriorating disc’s he has worked for 15 years but his condition is worsening. He is in the appeals process he was denied the first time what are his chances of winning this time?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Bridget,

      I can’t predict whether or not your husband will be approved. It will depend on whether his limitations keep him from performing any kind of work that he would otherwise be able to perform. I suggest that he request a copy of his claim file so he can see the exact reasons he was denied so he can refute them if he disagrees with the reasons.

      I would also suggest that he get legal assistance with the appeal. If he is disabled according to Social Security law, being approved may depend on correctly presenting his case. 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

  • Patrick Medlin

    I qualify for expedited proceasing due to being a wounded warrior whos disabilities are a direct result of active duty service. It said up there that expedited claims are often done in less than a month. My claim has already taken almost two months and it has been processing the medical portion of my claim for almost six weeks. At what point should I be concerned. It is fast approaching the 3 month guide line for normal claims and mine is supposed to be expedited. I am not sure of I should be worried.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Patrick,

      It can take from two to five months for an ordinary claim to be processed, so you don’t necessarily need to be worried about the outcome of the claim; however, I would check with the local office to be sure that your claim is, in fact, in the Wounded Warrior track. If it is, you might also call the Disability Determination Services to find out whether they are waiting to receive something that has been requested for your claim. If so, follow-up with the source to get it released.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • nadia

    I live overseas.Ive worked in the u s and have a ssdi hearing soon.My last doctors appointmet was a year ago in the u s.Will ssdi accecpt foreign medical evidance at the hearing ??

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Nadia,

      Yes, the judge will accept foreign evidence but you probably have to gather it all yourself and have it translated to English at your own expense from some formal translation service that will certify it is an accurate translation. Submit both the original in the non-English language and the translation.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Jared

    Hi Kay,
    I have been diagnosed as schizoaffective-bipolar type. I filed for ssdi/ssi and was told I qualify in October of last year. I have had both a consultative and medical exam and have been contacted for more information on a hospital I was checked into a year or so ago and told to call back to check my claim in a couple of days. In your experience can you tell me what my chances are of being approved and if so how much longer my claim will take given the information provided? If denied, should I get a disability lawer?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Jared,

      I can’t predict the outcome of your claim nor do I know why you were told to call back in a couple days. Yes, if you are denied, it would be best to hire an attorney to help with the appeal. I also recommend getting a copy of your claim file so that the appeal can address the exact rationale for the 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 the retroactive award at the time it sends your back pay to you. So, it’s all very easy and risk-free.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Amanda

    Dear Kay,
    I applied for SSDI for a fibromyalgia and bipolar depression, both were diagnosed by a board certified doctors. I have been in treatment for my psychiatric condition for the past 20 years on and off, and the last year and a half with the same doctor. Still SSDI sent me to their Internal medicine doctor and a psychologist. but now they want to send me for imagining examination, I am not sure for what, I am afraid of xray effect and I am not sure what does an Xray, MRI or a C SCAN will show them in regards to my diagnosed case. can I refused to make and appoi9ntment and go to the imaging appointment they want me to go to, or not.
    Can you please answer my question.
    Thank you
    Amanda M

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Amanda,

      You can refuse the imaging; however, your claim may be denied. I suggest that you ask the examiner what kind of imaging is planned, of what part of the body, and what they are looking for. That way you will make an informed decision. I suggest that you also ask the examiner to give you a list of the medical records they have for you from your own doctors just to be sure that your claim file has the medical records and statements in it that you think it does.

      If you decide against allowing the imaging and your claim is denied, you could, of course, try to appeal based on the evidence that does not include imaging.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Amanda

        Hi Kay,
        Thank you very much for the advice, I appreciate it, will call her tomorrow and find out what the Xray is for, I know she has my psychiatrist report with my bipolar depression and and when I went to SSDI psychologist she explained to me that aside from my psychiatrist diagnosis, she said that I have a PTSD due to my childhood molestation trauma, I am not sure if she stated that in her report to them or not, also, I was not aware that PTSD is for childhood sexual trauma, and if she stated that in their report that by itself should be ground for my approval. do not you think.
        Have a great afternoon

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Amanda,

          Any severely traumatic event can cause PTSD. Whether or not it is disabling depends on how severe it is.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

          • Amanda

            Thank you so very much.

            • Kay Derochie

              You are welcome, Amanda.

  • Lynda

    I sent in my activity report and work history on 3/1/15 and have provided many doctors as i’m currently in treatment for mental health and a leg disability from removal of a liposarcoma in 1995. My psychiatrist filled the paperwork out stating I was to be disabled for at least a year. I called for the status of my application today as I did not receive any letters for a Consultative exam which i was expecting. Does this imply that i’m being denied with such a quick decision?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Lynda,

      You do not say directly that you were told a decision had been made, but your question implies you were. A quick decision does not necessarily mean a denial.Consultative examinations are arranged only when there is insufficient medical information available.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • sandra

    Hi kay!
    I had my hearing on 1/28/15 and the judge verbally said i won…but needed recent medical info…i had to request for my medical records which took me 15 days to received them…when i did get them i faxed them to my lawyer and she passed them down to the judge on 2/26/15…last week i called to check my status and was told it was with the decision writers…now i called today to the 800# and was told my claim is pending and to check back on 4/28/15 what does all this means…#confusing

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Sandra,

      The number 800-772-1213 goes into the Social Security Administration’s teleservice center, which offers some of informational services available in local offices. The teleservice center has only general information on pending appeals. The information you received from the hearings office is more detailed. The decision has been made and the appeal has gone to the letter writing department. When the letter has been prepared, it will go back to the judge for review for accuracy and signature.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Sabrina

    I was born with club foot in both feet. I Had corrective surgery when I was a baby however I’ve struggled with my feet ever since I was little and I’ve been to tons of doctors and I have tons of pain and can only stand for a little while and I can’t walk long distances without feeling like my bones are going to come out of my feet <– truly that horrible. I'm about to be 21 and I applied around the first of January 2015. The only time I'm comfortable is when my feet are elevated. I just got a pack that said for me to fill out some more Information such as my work history and just personal info. I'm wondering how much longer it will take to get an answer! Thank you!

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Sabrina,

      Claims take two to five months for a medical decision. You can help move things along by carefully completing all the paperwork and returning it promptly.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • veronica

    Hi, Kay
    I’m very anxious I’m in the reconsideration stage of my claim and its taking way longer that my initial denial I submitted a mental RFC from my psychtrist I have not been sent any information to see one of their psychiatrist why haven’t they? I’ve been seeing my psychiatrist for over 10 years.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Veronica,

      Social Security pays for you to see a physician only if you do not have sufficient documentation from your own medical providers.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Theresa

    Hi Kay –
    I was diagnosed with Cardiomyopathy with an Ejection Fraction of approximately 25%, Congestive Heart Failure and COPD in April of 2013. It was treated medically until January of 2014, when a pacemaker and defibrillator were implanted. The defibrillator was implanted due to my very low Ejection Fraction and the risk of a “Sudden Cardiac Event” I have been employed as a school bus driver for 20 years and am 60 years old. In March of 2014 I went to renew my Federal DOT medical card. I was deemed “medically unfit” due to the defibrillator and my employment was terminated. I can never again drive a commercial vehicle. Any other skills I had prior to driving were left by the side long ago. I applied to the Federal and State government for medical waivers which were both denied . Once the final waiver denial came in I applied for SSD. I am now going into my 5 month of waiting on my initial application. When I check on this I get the same message: No decision has been made on your application, the State disability division is processing the medical portion of your claim. Not asking for anything in stone, but what are your thoughts on my application and chance of approval?
    Thank you ,
    Teri

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Theresa,

      You have a good chance of approval because of your severe condition, your age, and your long work history in a single occupation you can’t perform. I suggest that you call the Disability Determination Services and speak to the examiner. Ask if he or she is waiting for anything such as medical records that you can help get. If not, ask what remains to be done to complete the claim review.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Theresa

        Good morning Kay –
        Thank you for your response. I have called the Disability Examiner as you suggested. He told me that he had completed his portion and had “sent it on.” I am assuming that means back to Social Security. If I am reading this all correctly, I’m hoping I will have a decision in the near future.
        Thank you for your assistance and thoughts.
        Teri

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Theresa,

          The examiner’s statement could mean that he sent your claim on to the physician at the Disability Determination Services (DDS) to review the examiner’s recommended decision. I suggest that you call your local office or the Social Security call center at 1-800-772-1213 and inquire whether the claim has left the DDS; and, if so, it was sent to the payment center or the local office. If it is at the payment center you have been approved. If it is at the local office, the claim could be an approval or denied.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

          Sincerely,
          Kay

          • Theresa

            Hi Kay –
            Well I did as you suggested. I spoke with a very nice lady named Tammy who told me they did not have it and I should get back to the State Disability Examiner. She was also concerned since we are past the 120 days and I have not heard anything. I am 2 weeks shy of entering the 6th month. So onward I go. I will let you know who this turns out! Thank you!

            • Kay Derochie

              You are welcome, Theresa.

          • Theresa

            Good Morning Kay – When checking my checking account this morning I found a deposit from the SSA. Then I checked where you can find out about decisions. It had changed to one “had been made”. So I am assuming I have received some monies before any paperwork, also assuming I have been approved. Thank you for all your help. Just for the record – I started my claim on Sept. 17, 2014 and just today apparently received an answer. March 20th would have made the wait 6 months. When I called SSA, the very nice lady said they were back logged and understaffed. So it looks like wait times (at least in New Hampshire) are closer to 6 months. Thanks again for everything.
            Teri

            • Kay Derochie

              You are welcome Theresa.

              Thanks for the update.

              Sincerely,
              Kay

  • sph683

    My wife was diagnosed with epilepsy about 3 years ago. The seizures were controlled by medication, and she continued working. She is 21 now. Last summer, the seizures returned, to the point that she was having at least one everyday. She was taken to the ER several times during this period. Her neurologist said that the seizures were psych related. Not epilelptic. She finally had to quit working in September. She filed a disability claim that month. She has been to 3 other neurologists since then, and still cannot find the cause of the seizures. They have tried several different medications, and dosages. She has been to a therapist, who said there was nothing they could do to help her. She was denied SSI due to my income, but her lawyer saif she should still be able to get SSDI. This month, she received a letter saying that the SS office has scheduled her to speak to a psychiatrist about her claim.

    Would you consider that a good, or bad sign? It’s been 4 months since she filed. About how much longer should it take, and about how much should she get?

    I make about 37000 a year. Supporting 2 people with a mortgage, and multiple specialist, and ER visits has been trying.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear sph683,

      The request for a medical examination is only a sign that the your wife’s claim is being actively working on. By the time she attends the examination, the report is delivered, and the review completed, I would expect it will be at least another two months before she gets a decision.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • greg

    I have a partial disability rating from a back injury and later developed PTSD. SSD is sending me to a psychiatrist. I have panic attacks and and recently had an auto accident because of it. Will I be turned down?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Greg,

      I cannot predict whether your claim will be approved or denied. If the claim is denied and really think there are not any occupations you can perform, appeal with 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 it sends your back pay to you. So, it’s all very easy and risk-free.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • lynne

    Received a denial notice for ssi but nothing on my ssd, when I check the website it says no decision has been made. What does this mean?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Lynne,

      Was the denial for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) a medical denial or a denial for excess income or resources? If it was the latter, then your Social Security Disability (SSD) is still probably waiting for a medical decision. If the SSI was a medical denial, your SSD has probably been denied also and a letter will be coming soon.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Shederrion Lewis

    I applied for ssi for my son that is one he has really bad asthma and always back and forth to the hospital I am unable to work because I keep close eye on him do you think he will be appoved

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Shederrion,

      I cannot predict whether your son will be medically approved for Supplemental Security Income (SSI). It depends on whether his illness keeps him from developing and functioning within normal limits for a child of his age. If he is medically approved and his income and the income and countable of his parents living with him is below the limits for SSI eligiblity, he will be eligible.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Cassie

    Hello, Kay. I have really gained a lot of insite reading your replies to posts that people have sent to you. I have a couple of questions that I hope you can help me with. My case has been a long drawn out process, but I will try to give you as much information as I can.

    I filed an original claim in March, 2012 and with that claim, I have an attorney who has taken it to the level of Federal Court, which they told me could take another year. When I received the denial from the Appeals Council in October, 2014, I was informed that I could file a new claim in which I could claim disability starting the day after the Administrative Judge’s decision. I have accumulated a lot more medical evidence since the judges decision, and I filed a new claim on October 13, 2014.

    In the middle of December, I decided to call the main SS office because I had not heard one word from anybody. I had gotten married and moved since my first claim from 2012, and even though I used the most updated information on my new claim, the representative I spoke to informed me that they did not have the updated information in their system even though my lawyer had sent them the updated information when I submitted it to them. He said he was updating everything while we were on the phone.

    Anyway, the representative said he updated the information, and that they were needing a Work History Report filled out by me and sent to the SS office in our area. He said he was mailing it to me that day. Well, since I have been trying for my benifits for so long, I found the form on their website, filled it out, and mailed it to the office in our area. A couple of days later, a representative from that office called me and verified all of my information: name, address, phone number, doctors, etc.

    A couple of days after this phone call, I was able to see a change in my status when I check their website, which now says that the DDS is processing the medical portion of my claim. So, my first question is, do you have any idea how long it may take for them to make that decision since they had my contact information wrong for the first 2 months?

    About a week after I spoke to the representative in our area, I finally received the report from the representative from the main SSA office. However, the information on the envelope was still my OLD name and address, and the only reason it ever reached me was because our Post Office forwarded it to the new address. So, my second question is, do I need to worry that they have not corrected all of my information yet, or should I believe that the second representative that was from our area, who verified everything was able to get it correctly updated in their system?

    Thank you in advance for your reply. This is a great service that you have provided for people who have so many questions about the confusing process of disibility. I hope you had a very Merry Christmas, and I hope you have a fantastic New Year!!

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Cassie,

      It is important that the DDS and all Social Security offices have your correct address. I suggest taking a look at the date on the letter and the postmark to see if it was prepared and sent before your last conversation with the local office about your address. Also, I’m not sure what you mean by “main SSA office.” What address did the letter come from, what in general was the content of the letter, and was the letter dated before or after the representative assured you the address had been changed. With that information, I might be able to offer some more concrete suggestion.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Cassie

        Hello there, Kay. Thanks for responding to my post. What I meant when I said the first representative was from the main SSA office, I meant I called the phone number that comes up on their web site when you check the status of your claim. It says if you have questions to call 800-772-1213, and that is what I did. The gentleman I talked to said he would correct my information and send the report that I needed to fill out. There was no letter enclosed with this blank report, but the envelope was postmarked with a date that was BEFORE I spoke to the representative in our area office. I am really assuming that they now have the correct information since the representive in our area called me a few days later.

        I guess now, my only question is if you know if it will take even longer for a decision since they didn’t change my infomormation when it was submitted and they should have requested that information from me sooner?

        Thank again for your assistance. You offer very important information for so many people.

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Cassie,

          Now that all the requested information has been submitted, the prior mix-up about your address should not affect future processing times.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  • Celine

    Hi Kay,

    Adding on to an earlier post. I went to my CE mental exam on Tuesday 12/16/14. She asked the usual questions I guess, it lasted about 30 to 40 min. She stated that I do have Anxiety and Depression but it has a lot to do with my medical condition and then proceeded to say with back on the right medication and counseling and the proper medical care I maybe able to work. Is this a good or bad sign that I will be approved or denied? Also is it normal for the psychologist to call me three times to remind me of my appointment( 4 days before, day before and day of)? Another question my SS DDS approved a taxi to and from my appt. is this also normal case?

    Thanks
    Celine

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Celine,

      The doctor’s office wanted to make sure you were not a no-show, which wastes their time, so they reminded you a lot. I can’t say for sure, but as you describe what psychologist said, I interpret that she is of the opinion you can’t work now; but with the proper treatment, you could regain your ability to be self-supporting. Whether or not you are approved will depend on the exact form her report takes and on all the other information in your claim file.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Celine

        Okay Thanks

      • Celine

        Okay spoke with my DDS worker and she said that the psychologist is usually fast with her reports. She said they should have it bought a week and then it goes to medical for review, and then back to SSA Office to send out letter. I thought the DDS makes the decision if approved or denied is this not the case?

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Celine,

          The DDS is a state agency under contract with the federal government to make the medical decision but the letter is issued by the Social Security Administration. If the claim is an approval, the award letter will include payment amounts.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

          • Celine

            Hi Kay, this is Celine. I was denied then did a the reconsideration it was denied. So waited tried to back to work in June 2015 had problems once again just could not work. Refresher I have High blood pressure, arthritis all over body, Hypothyroidism, Anxiety, Smoldrting Multiple Myeloma and finally diagnosis with Tachycardia in September 2015, also along with other issues. I had to reapply for ssdi the lawyer said yes this time I got a lawyer they did the online application for me on October 8, 2015. I got a call Oct. 28 the CR said she was calling me about the ssi application and stated ” I will not be eligible for the $733 since my ssdi will be $1161 and if I still wanted to do interview. I told I’m not sure since I have a lawyer then she in turn said OK yes you should let them handle that since they are getting 25%” So I looked at the site to check status and it now say DDS is processing the medical portion. I know you can’t say but does this look good in my favor.

            • Kay Derochie

              Dear Celine,

              I think that your claims are being medically approved. If you signed an agreement with the attorney to represent you in both Social Security and SSI claims, you may not be able to withdraw your SSI application because the attorney is due a fee from the back pay. I suggest that you discuss this with the attorney.

              Sincerely,
              Kay

          • Celine

            I would also like to ask this question. I spoke to my lawyer today and they are not sure. She said it sounds like they will approve me this time since the cr gave me my benefit amount and my claim is already at the DDS. But this is my question, will I get back pay for when I first applied in July 2014 to now, even though I went back to work in June 22, 2015 to August 17 as a PRN and then went full time until I resigned on Sept.15. As stated the lawyers filed a new claim in Oct. Not sure how this will work, but I did make a little over $3500 in those few months of working

            • Kay Derochie

              Dear Celine,

              If in your new claim, you claimed an earlier disability date and listed the work from June to October as an unsuccessful work attempt, you may be paid based on yoru original stop work date; however, benefits cannot go back farther than the later of October 2014 and your sixth full calendar month of disability.

              Sincerely,
              Kay

  • Carlos

    Hey, I have my mother in law who applied for disability about two years ago and still have not been approved. She was in a wreck and had to have surgery on her heart, and leg that will never completely heal and other injuries that she deals with daily. She have been waiting on a response with her lawyer, but nothing yet. What should she do from here to get an answer?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Carlos,

      I need more information to respond. Has your mother-in-law’s claim been denied so that it is in appeal? If so, what level of appeal? Is she waiting for a hearing date and, if so, how long has it been since she requested the hearing.

      Thanks,
      Kay

  • Diane Van

    I have had Parkinson’s for 16 years. I am 60. I worked as a nurse for 30 + years, and just applied for disability. I also have essential tremors, mild cognitive impairment, restless leg syndrome and periodic limb movement disorder. I live in Florida. Is Parkinson’s a disease that social security considers a disability?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Diane,

      The Social Security Administration does recognize Parkinson’s as a medical condition. Whether or not you are approved will depend on the severity of your symptoms. If you did not already do so, make up a list of all your symptoms and submit it to supplement your claim. List the things in your life that you are unable to do or do with difficulty, both in your job as a nurse and personally. For example, fine motor control required to insert IVs and give injections.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Diane Van

        Thank you

        • Kay Derochie

          You are welcome, Diane.

  • cynthia m groover

    I have a question if I file for Social Security benefits how long does it take once the reconsideration has finished for my letter to go out and how do I know if I’ve been approved or denied they say it takes 30 days to get the letter? And also if there’s a way that I could find out before I get the letterso can you tell me what’s the procedure after they made the decision of approval or after they made the decision for denial

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Cynthia,

      You mention a reconsideration, which is the first level of appeal; but the time frame of thirty days seems more like the time to prepare a hearing decision. Either way, appeal decisions are usually not divulged prior to receipt of the medical approval or denial letter when everything has been finalized.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Frederick Moore

    I h ave been denied once but I am on appeal now and I have gone to a consultive and and an internist I also went to my psychirotris and he said that I am diagnose with the Schizophrenia thingy and I am taking medication called risperdone I guess I am also mentally retardation as well and I am was wandering when will I hear from social security about my decision plus I have a bad back it hurts when I lay down or bend over and I cant pick up stuff even if I wanted to or not. what I need to know I have been waiting since decemebr of last year

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Frederick,

      If it has been more than two months since you went to the two consultative examinations, I suggest calling the claims examiner who requested you attend the examinations and ask him or her the status of your claim and what else needs to be done to get a decision.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Carl

    Hi kat, I got a question. I applied for social security desability on June 30-2014. I’ve been suffering from hiperthyrodism for the last 3 years also depression, anxiety attacks, psychosis and paranoia. I worked till Abril 2014. I had my physical and psychological test from SSD on November 20-2014. It has been 6 months since I applied and I haven’t heard from them after the November appointment. I was wondering how much more should I wait to get an answer or should I get in touch with their office to get an update. Thank you

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Carl,

      Consulting physicians have up to three weeks to send their reports to the Social Security claims examiner and then it will take a while for the reports to be reviewed in the context of all the information in your claim file. If you don’t have a decision by the first of the year, you might call the claims examiner and ask what remains to be done before a decision can be rendered.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Carl

        Kay, thanks a lot for your help!

        • Kay Derochie

          You are welcome, Carl.

  • How does someone get copies of what was submitted to the social security office? My son’s wife applied for benefits after being diagnosed with a terminal illness. Her parents used forms and or documents that may have been in question during the process. My son, the husband and father of a infant child wasn’t included in the process. Let us know how we can obtain copies of all documents submitted. Thanks!

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Timothy,

      You do not have the right to obtain information about someone else’s claim. You can, however, report to Social Security anything that you suspect being fraudulent.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Laura

    Hi, I applied in October of 2013 and am still waiting for an initial decision. My claim has gone through 3 different case workers. The latest one said she didn’t know why the case has taken so long, that maybe the last worker was slow. They now want me to go to two more doctor appointments, even though I have a very detailed letter/report from a specialist, which I had updated 3 months ago since they are taking so long. One of the appointment is not until 1/15. It seems to me they could have scheduled these appointments a year ago if they needed them. Have you ever known a case to take well over a year for an initial decision? Thanks.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Laura,

      I would say that your claim slipped through the cracks with no one looking at it. Certainly attend the examinations; however, you might also call the current examiner’s attention to the specialists two reports.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Brandi

    Hi Kay. I got a virus that turned into a terminal lung disease. My pulmonary function tests are horrible and I have not been able to work in almost a year. I turned in all hospital paperwork, lung function tests and cat scans I have. However I am only 35 years old. I had a phone interview today and was told that I qualified for a compassionate expedited review? (Not sure if that’s the proper term) I’m just wondering my chances of getting approved. I included letters that my doctor wrote stating I cannot work. Do you think the information will be sufficient for a pulmonary case? I have heard those are very hard to get approved. Thank you for your time.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Brandi,

      Given that your claim has been tagged for a compassionate expedited review, changes of approval are good.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • kayla

    Hi kay I have a question my son ssi was medical approved but the financial was denied . If I apply again will his benefits start since he was medical approved I mean when they disabled him or will it start from when I apply again?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Kayla,

      Benefits will be paid based on the current application. If your child became financially eligible within twelve months of the prior application, you may not have to have a new medical approval.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • haz

        Okay well this was the problem Kay . The reason my son was denied was because in Feb of this year my sister was going threw a divorce and she had a property which she had bought before she got married in fear her xhusband take that away from her she put it under my name . That was the reason I was denied I told the sscr and I told her I was going to change it back under her name cuz its really not mine so she advise me that when its done and I have the papers in my hand to apply again. That the medical was approved so all I needed was to do the financial update again…So the next day we changed the property back to my sister I called and set an appointment to apply again in Nov.18 and they gave me an appointment until January 12,2015. now that day is for the application only I will get another appointment for the financial update? Since my case won’t be send to an examiner no more cuz hes medically approve.how long can it take ? And last does my application count since I called in for a appointment on nov18,2014 or when I get the interview on January 12.2015? Thank you for your time and feedback.

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Haz,

          I would expect the January 12 appointment to be the financial review. If benefits are reinstated due to the transfer of the property without prorated out the value of the property and Social Security treats your request as a new application, benefits will begin December 2014, the first full month after the application was initiated.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  • Janet

    I applied for Social Security early October, I have enough credits if I became disabled. Now my question is that I once received SSI years ago for about 2 yrs or so. Then I worked for many years and gotten laid off twice, last time due to my health problems that I suffered in past 4 yrs with many MRI’s, tests, surgeries and also I was born profoundly deaf from birth due to Congenital Rubella Syndrome. I haven’t worked in a year and was wondering even though I am 42 yrs old. I wonder if you once received SSI years ago and now I can qualify for SSDI, is the determination easier to process even I have qualified disability until I die because I can’t hear anything. – See more at: http://www.disabilityadvisor.com/social-security-office/#comment-41395

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Janet,

      Your claim will be evaluated based on your current medical condition; however, if you have not already done so, be sure that the claims examiner at the Disability Determination Services (DDS) knows that you received Supplemental Security Income (SSI) in the past.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Frenda Baker

    Good evening,

    I applied for disability July 2014 on the advice of my primary care physician. I have not worked since May 2014. I am 61. Past work 30 years RN and 7 years health occupations teacher. I have BSN and MAT. I have moderate severe RA. I also have moderate did (OA) in both hips, both knees and severe in both ankles. Last Wednesday the NC SSA site changed to a decision had been made and I would be sent a letter. My question is how long does it take for them to get the letters out? Thanks and have a great day. Frensa

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Frenda,

      If you applied for Social Security Disability (SSDI), it can take from one to three months. Supplemental Security Income (SSI) claim take somewhat less time.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • sky

    Hi kay I have several questions I want to ask you. First of all I applied for ssi for my child in june 2014 and the medical part was approved. My case was sent to the local office and a SSCI send me a phone appointment to update my financial status from june 2014 to present. This is where the problem came. In february of2014 my sister was going threw a divorce she had a property before she got married and in fear her husband would want to fight that in the divorce she put it under my name . So the ssi for my child was denied I explained to the SSCR it wasnt mine and she recommended to me to change it back and for me to reapply again. My questions are do I still have to go threw the whole process of the 5 months waiting time ? If not what do I say when I reapply again that I only want to update my financial status? Other question is the backpaid lost from june 2014 when I first applied because I have to reapply again?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Sky,

      Please see my response of a few minutes ago to most of your questions. I will add that you would tell Social Security that your child was medically approved for SSI, but was not financially eligible and now is. If this happens before June 2015, you should not have to obtain a new medical approval.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • sky

    Hi kay I have several questions I hope u can help me with. I applied for ssi for my child in june of 2014. The medical part was approved so my case was sent the local office where we are from. After 2 weeks I received a phone appointment with a SSCR to update financia status. This is where the problem came. My sister was going threw divorce and she had a property she didn’t want to get involved in her divorce so back in february of 2014 she transfer the properly under my name but its not my property because of that my sons ssi w denied. The sscr told me to change tha property and reapply again just for the financial part because the medical was already approved. My questions are does it take along time to get a appointment again with a sscr after I reapply again? And are my backpaid lost of when I applied back in june2014 because I’m reapplying again? And last what do I say when I reapply again?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Sky,

      Transferring the property out of your name may not immediately make your child financially eligible for Supplemental Security Income (SSI). It is effectively giving away an asset that could be sold to support you and your child. (I understand that ethically it doesn’t belong to you, but legally it does.) This means that if the property has, say, $10,000 equity in it, Social Security would prorate the value of the property out over a certain number of months that the money (had the property been sold) would have supported your family at the SSI income levels. After the proration ends, your child would be financially eligible. Benefits would begin the month after the month of re-application unless you applied on the first of the month and then benefits would start in the month of application.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Janet

    I applied for Social Security early October, I have enough credits if I became disabled. Now my question is that I once received SSI years ago for about 2 yrs or so. Then I worked for many years and gotten laid off twice, last time due to my health problems that I suffered in past 4 yrs with many MRI’s, tests, surgeries and also I was born profoundly deaf from birth due to Congenital Rubella Syndrome. I haven’t worked in a year and was wondering even though I am 42 yrs old. I wonder if you once received SSI years ago and now I can qualify for SSDI, is the determination easier to process even I have qualified disability until I die because I can’t hear anything.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Janet,

      You have to go through the full claim process for your current claim. I do suggest that you list on your application the approximate dates for which you received Supplemental Security Income (SSI) in the past, the conditions for which they were paid, and the fact that benefits stopped because you attempted to work. Indicate which of those conditions you still have and whether they are the same, better or worse. Be specific regarding why your health caused you to stop work this time.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Janet

        Thanks Kay, They did ask about SSI and I put down YES I received it before but it don’t ask why or when I had it. I am assuming they can go back into their records for it because due to that I am Profoundly deaf which that condition is not changed as I am still Profoundly deaf. I had worked for a long time and now with many other health problem along w/ my hearing makes it difficult for me to talk on phones because I can’t lip read and have great difficulty understanding certain people. My school sent over all of my IEP that I was under the whole time I was in school due to my deafness. I submitted a whole 2 huge folders to SS of all medical test, surgeries I have had. I had 15 surgeries all together over the years, 4 surgeries in a 2 yr period and will require more surgery down the line as well.

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Janet,

          It sounds as if you have done a good job of presenting your case.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

          • Janet

            I got denied by SSA for my case. I now have obtained a lawyer to appeal. She said it does not look Good for SSA to turn me down for the same condition that I had awhile back when I had the SSI and I applied for the SSDI for the same condition plus more health problems.

  • John Smith

    Hello, Please advise if the Adjudicator applies the GRID RULES first when you apply for the disability or GRID RULES are applied in the final stage when you go in front of the Judge after denial. Thanks

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear John,

      The same rules on the evaluation of disability apply at the original claim and in appeals. A judge may go deeper into vocational issues considered in using the grid by consulting a vocational expert. Otherwise the evaluations should be the same.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Manav

    Dear Kay, I cannot tell you how helpful your advise is to me and how many times i come back to check your website if you already have answered to my request. I want to be clear which i am not – does my JUDICATOR (person who is deciding my disability case at the first attempt) CONSIDER and apply the GRID RULES in the first attempt OR GRID RULES ARE ONLY WHEN YOU GO IN FRONT OF THE JUDGE in the final steps of the process. I have multiple conditions + my age (57) + depression/anxiety/panic attacks + me taking LYRICA, INSULIN, 3 ANTIDEPRESSANTS, and High Blood Pressure Meds is that all not enough for them to qualify me under GRID RULES?
    Thanks for your help.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Manav,

      The rules for determining whether someone is disabled are the same at original claims and all appeals. At a hearing, the judge goes more deeply into the issues, especially vocational often with the use of a vocational expert’s testimony. I cannot say whether you qualify or not because I have not read your complete claim file.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Manav

        Kay, No Offence, but I have tried to ask the same question from you at three different occasion and you have DODGED my actual question every time, instead filling your reply with useless text.. here again I am writing the question for the 4th time … please reply to it to the point if you can I appreciate it … When a Disability Claim is Filed for the First Time does the Adjudicator (the person who decides if the claim is approved or denied) takes into consideration THE GRID RULES because there is one way to be approved is if the Listing at its full severity applies or can be proved with the evidence – another way is when the claimant’s AGE (if above 55) along with the RFC is taken into consideration and the claimant is approved or disapproved based on THE GRID RULES. Does The Adjudicator APPLY THE GRID RULE when the LISTING SEVERITY could not be proved due The Doctor’s Offices were not being Co-operative in submitting the Medical Records despite repeat requests by SSA and the Claimant. Your reply should be either YES or No.
        Thanks
        Sincerely
        Manav

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Manav,

          The disability evaluation goes through five steps. If the evaluation does not result in an approval in the first four steps and reaches the fifth step that requires evaluation of a person’s ability to do a new occupation not previously performed, then yes, the grid rules will be used in the assessment.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

          • Manav

            Thanks for clarifying Kay that means the Adjudicator in the first step does not pay any attention to the GRID RULES.

            The GRID RULES are considered in the last step when you go in front of the Judge.

            Thanks
            Manav

            • Kay Derochie

              Dear Manav,

              No, all the rules apply at the initial claim and at all the appeal levels. The steps I referred to are not the levels of appeal. They are the disability evaluation steps. You can read about them in the article “How Does Social Security Apply Social Security Disability Laws to Determine If I Am Disabled?” under the “Claim Process” tab on the navigation bar on this website, http://www.disabilityadvisor.com. The grid is a tool used in Step 5.

              Sincerely,
              Kay

  • Debra

    Hi Kay, when I went to the social security office and received the denial a very helpful social worker to me to his office and did the appeal for me, he could see I had difficulty walking and I gave him my side affects, he also mentioned my appointments for the thyroid problem found. He asked about all my ct scans and pet scans after the date of my first filing which I gave him, he also went ahead and completed his portion for non medical he said and this way if I am approved the back pay will be issued immediately. I asked him if I should get an attorney and he said no not at this time that he will do this appeal for me and he did the very nexted day. So I will see my radiation oncologist in Febuary and ask for another letter. she did do a letter last time saying I couldn’t walk stand or sit for any length of time but I guess it made no difference to the claim examiner. Thank you for your help
    Sincerely,

    Debra

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Debra,

      Please see my response of earlier today. Your appeal may be decided before February. If you want to submit another letter from the oncologist, be sure that the letter explains why you can’t stand or sit long, that is what medical findings support that. If you are denied again, be sure to get 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 at the time they send your back pay to you. So, it’s all very easy and risk-free.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Debra

        Ok I will make a sooner appointment. Oh the social security worker called it a reconsideration. Is there a difference?

        Thank you Kay,

        Sincerely,

        Debra

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Debra,

          The first level of appeal is a reconsideration and is a file review of the original decision and any new information you submit; the second is a hearing and you have the opportunity to present your case to a judge. The third appeal is an Appeals Council Review. Your best opportunities to be approved are at the reconsideration if you have new or better information, if not, the best opportunity is at a hearing. If your reconsideration is denied, be sure to have a qualified Social Security attorney represent you. 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

          • Debra

            Hi Kay, thank you so much for the info. I was just told by my radiation oncologist that I have Peripheral neuropathy (nerve damage) and I am being referred to a neurologist for an examine,
            How will I now who to send the updated information to for my disability? Please advise! Thank you so much!

            Sincerely,

            Debra

            • Kay Derochie

              Dear Debra,

              You need to send it to the claims examiner assigned to your appeal at the Disability Determination Services (DDS). If you do not have the contact information for DDS in your state, you can get it from your local Social Security office or perhaps by call Social Security at 1-800-772-1213. I suggest calling to get the examiner’s name so that you can personally address the letter to the examiner. Do this soon!

              Sincerely,
              Kay

              • Debra

                Hi Kay, I have the doctor appt set for Dec 5 that is the soonest I can get in and then after my check up she will refer me to the neurologist. I will call next week to find out who was assigned to my case it was sent for reconsideration a little over 2 weeks ago by the social security worker. Thank you again for all your help!

                Sincerely,

                Debra

              • Debra

                Hi Kay, and Happy Thanksgiving! My case has not been assigned to an examiner as of last week, I would like to know if the examiner will request documentation from me or the doctors in a reconsideration case if needed? And do you know approx. how long a reconsideration will take? Thank you again for all your help!

                Sincerely,

                Debra

                • Kay Derochie

                  Dear Debra,

                  A reconsideration decision can take from a month to a few months. The examiner may or may not request documentation. If there is something you want the claims examiner to consider, I suggest getting copies and submitting them yourself.

                  Sincerely,
                  Kay

                  • Debra

                    Thank you Kay, Merry Christmas!

                    • Kay Derochie

                      You are welcome, Debra. Merry Christmas to you, too.

  • hazzel

    Hi kay I wanted to ask I received a letter from my local office for a phone appointment my son has been medical approval for ssi . Its a phone appointment with a SSCR I guess to review my financial status. After that appointment how long does it take to start receiving benefits ?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Hazzel,

      The processing time after the financial-update interview varies greatly from about a week to a month or more depending mostly on workloads.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • hazzel

        Ty kay

        • Kay Derochie

          You are welcome, Hazzel.

  • Ozell Powell

    I am a 46 yr old 12 yr veteran as a deputy sheriff. I was diagnosed with severe remitting multiple sclerosis in 2008. I was accomodated a position at the front desk until my employer discriminated against me forcing me to resign. I tried vocational rehabilitation , but when the rehabilitation psychologist evaluated me, I failed it due to memory problems as well. He said I was na strong candidate for disability because of those issues. I applied a few days ago. I submitted an abundance of medical records along with the psychologists evaluation. Do you think I will be granted disability based on these?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Ozwell,

      There is a reasonable possibility that you will be approved. If you are not, do appeal and get legal assistance with the appeal. 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

      • Ozell Powell

        Hi Kay, I just recieved a couple of letters fro SSA. They want me to complete form SSA-3369-BK(I’ve completed and submitted one already) ,M-44P D0044P, and a 0075. I just completed them and will fax them tomorrow. Is this a sign that I can be denied?

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Ozell,

          The forms you were sent are a sign that your claim is being thoroughly investigated to gather information to make a decision.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  • Manav

    Dear Kay I forgot to mention about my jobs – my last job was of a Teacher mostly standing and teaching in a classroom only for 6 months (I had no prior teaching experience or training) I lost my job because I could not keep up with the stress level because of which my classroom management was poor and my employer gave me an opportunity to resign because of my health. Before that I drove School Bus for 1.5 years with kids on wheel chairs (which I cannot do now since I am on Insulin). Before that I worked as a Computer Operator for 13 years in which 7 hours out of 8 hour shift I was standing or walking mounting tapes on 24×7 Giant Multiple Computer Operation Center. In all three jobs I was not sitting in an office I was standing walking or running around all day. My today’s physical condition is I lay in bed all day and night with body aches all over, depressed getting panic attacks, unable to sleep, constipated, making bathroom trips unable to empty bladder due to urinary uti and incontinent. My A1C runs into 9 and I have Protein in my urine (Proteinuria – CKD iii condition), my EGr is 40 (which is supposed to be 60 plus)

  • Manav

    Dear Kay, I have had diabetes 17 years, High Blood Pressure and High Cholesterol/Triglycerides 20 years, suffered a heart attack in 1994, have CKD (Chronic Kidney Disease) Stage III since 200. Due to these long term conditions I suffer from Body Aches all over (diabetic neuropathy), Urinary incontinent and chronic constipation (diabetic neuropathy) and Depression, Panic Attacks, Sleep Disorder. I have documented my application and forms 3369 and 3373 (which were sent to me) in details also my friend received form 3380 which also has been submitted. I had lots of medical records which i submitted, but 50% of my doctor’s offices have not been very co-operative in sending in my medical records. I did describe in details my job duties and how much physically I had to do what and what my physical limitations are. I am 57 years old and have a Bachelor Degree, but no Techincal Training or Education. I am on Insulin, Lyrica, Atwan, couple of other antidepressants, metoprolol, simvastastatin, diovan, lisinopril, and antibiotics for UTI and urinary incontinent. All above mentioned paperwork/forms were submitted with SSA by OCT 10, 2014.. I applied for SSDI claim online on Sept 02, 2014. How long will it be before I would hear from SSA and what are my prospects of getting approved … thanks for your advise. Manav

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Manav,

      I cannot predict how long it will take to get a decision on your claim. I suggest that you do everything you can to get the remaining doctors to provide a copy of the records, even if it means paying for the copies yourself and submitting them yourself. If you are denied, I recommend appealing with legal assistance. 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

      • Manav

        Thanks for your reply. The medical records I had with me and I submitted already are basically the same which the doctor’s offices are not sending saying that they do not keep records that old (from before year 2008). Once the Examiner has all the paperwork together how long does it take for him/her to make a decision. Also, looking at my disabilities what you think are the chances of my claim approval at the first attempt. Does the Examiner take it into account the Grid Rules my age being above 55 having diabetes for more than 17 years suffering from Neuropathy causing body aches all over, chronic constipation, Bladder infections UTI and Urinary Incontinence. Thanks for your advise and help again.

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Manav,

          You should have a better chance having submitted all your records. Yes, the grid rules will apply unless your medical records show a condition so severe that the disability evaluation does not have to go to the final step.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  • Sara

    Hi, I originally applied for SS Disability in 2001 during a life threatening lupus crash. I was denied- i suppose because the crash had not been for 12 months. Anyways, i didn’t appeal because I just wanted to focus on getting more strong and getting back to work. Prior to that, i worked about 50 hours per week, was 43 years old, and had worked since i was 15 years old. Fast forward 13 years, i have never been able to return to work full time or keep a job with consistant work of 20 hours per week or more. I am now 55 years old, have decreased mobility, cannot stand, walk long distance, tremendous fatigue, and only have a high school diploma and cannot use a computer (my friend is helping me with this). I applied about 14 weeks ago and SSA entered my application date back to the original application in 2001. I guess i am wondering what my chances are of being approved this time, if SSA is not considering this my first application, and if approved- how far back would they go? My two children are now both over 18; but in 2001 would have gotten a check too since i am 100% sole custodial parent….and is there a chance my claim will process soon?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Sara,

      My guess is that Social Security is going back to 2001 only for your disability date. (This is assuming that you never made over the substantial gainful activity (SGA) level, which currently is $1,070 gross per month. The purpose is to see whether you can be found disabled while you were still insured for Social Security Disability. If you are approved, your benefits will go back a maximum of twelve months before the current application. As such your children will be eligible for benefits only if they were under eighteen sometime in the twelve months before your more recent application.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Sara

        Thank you Kay, unfortunately, since the original 2001 application, I’ve never made it back to work full time and haven’t made more than $1,070 a YEAR, any year, from 2001-2014. What do you mean “purpose to see if I could be found disabled while I was still insured for soc sec disability”? Since most are rejected the first application, is there an improved chance of being approved this time since now now SGA for 13 years, age 55, HS education, no computer skills, lupus? Would the govt invest in teaching me a new trade at my age?

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Sara,

          Social Security requires that you have twenty quarters of coverage (work credits) in the last ten years before disability began. Because you indicated that as of this date you are no longer insured (no longer have twenty credits in the past ten years, you need to prove that you became disabled within the period of time you still had enough credits. Your chances on appeal depend on whether the new information you provide shows you are disabled. While your claim is pending and whether or not you are approved for benefits, you can contact your state’s Department of Vocational Rehabilitation for an evaluation to see whether they will offer you retraining or other employment services.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

          • Sara

            Oh, I know what you’re meaning now. Yes, I have more than enough credits. Thank you.

  • Stephanie J.

    I was diagnosed with degenerative ankle joints in both legs and arthritis in both feet. I was born with partial club feet but was told when I was 5 I no longer need treatment. fast forward 40 years and after over 20 years in retail I can no longer work. I applied for disability in the state of Georgia in September 2013 and was immediately turned down. I am on my 4th appeal and just found out that I may have thyroid cancer and or kidney failure. I wonder if that could impact my case? I have limited history about arthritis but have x-rays and orthopedic doctor support (it is very hard to walk, stand, lift and even sit for long periods of time) and have had a long documented history of thyroid and autoimmune problems. What are my chances?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Stephanie,

      If you have an attorney, consult with the attorney regarding the best way to handle the new medical diagnoses if they have not been reported for the appeal. If you have no attorney, submit the medical documentation you have. Whether or not it is considered depends on the appeals level you are at. (You say you are at fourth appeal, but there are only three appeal levels–two within the Social Security system and a lawsuit in District Court.)

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Tammy

    Why do the DDS ask for a 15 year work history and where does this fit in with the process of the decision. I was diagnosed with stage
    3 breast cancer and i have lymphodema in my arm , chest and back

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Tammy,

      The disability evaluation includes determining whether you can work in occupations that you have performed in the past; therefore, they need a list of those occupations and the duties you had to perform. Do you best to provide your jobs in detail.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Debra

    Continued from last post. Hi Kay, i forgot to,give you my age, I turned 60 this year.

    Thank you for all your time!!

  • Debra

    Hi Kay, i have stage 3 C2 Grade 3 endometrioid, adencariconoma, and serous cariconoma, received my pet scan which now shows me in remission however it shows something on my throid. I filed my claim March 2014. I spoke with my social security examiner today and I told her that blood work is being done then I will have an ultra sound and then back to the hospital for biopsy I asked for status and this is what she said. The examiner received my petscan back from the social security doctor today and that she would be sending my file to the local social security office for which I filed and I should have a letter in 3 to 4 weeks as to the decision on my claim. With your experenice, can you give me an idea as to the possibility of me being approved.

    Sincerely,

    Debra

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Debra,

      A medical decision has been made on your claim. The way the examiner worded the information, I cannot tell whether your claim has been approved or denied.I suggest that you call the local office if you have not received a letter by the end of November to ask if you have been medically approved, and if so, whether they need anything additional from you to start payment. Be sure to mention that the examiner said that the file was being sent to their office.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Debra

        Hi Kay, I called the 800 number to ask how long it normally takes for the file to leave the disability examiners desk to the local office which I was just told that there is no real time as to when they get it but the customer service person told me that a decision was made by the local office yesterday and I should get a letter by the end of nexted week. Now the disabilty examiner told me on Wednesday that she was sending my file to the local office and it should be 3 to 4 weeks before I get a letter so now I am worried because the local office has sent a letter out to me just 1 day after the disability examiner told me. Is this bad? I thought the local office would have to do their non medical portion and I thought that would take a couple of weeks is that correct?? Please advice

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Debra,

          Apparently the local office is caught up on at least some of their work and able to respond quickly to the receipt of the file. If you have been medically approved, the letter might only be a request for an appointment.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

          • Debra

            Hi Kay, thank you so much for all your help with my questions, I went ahead and contacted my local social security office and told her how concerned I was that the decision letter was sent out so fast after speaking to my social security examiner on Wednesday and she said sometimes they fast track letters after decision’s are made on some cases and she said if I want to come down to the local office on Monday and they will tell me the decision right then and there before getting the letter and she gave me directions as well. She was very helpful and sorry she could not tell me over the phone so that is what I intend to do Monday morning, again thank you so much you are very helpful and I pray I get approved.

            Sincerely,

            Debra

          • Debra

            Hi Kay, well after everything I went through, they denied me this week, I am so shocked, I have state 3 grade 3 adencarisanoma, and serous carcinoma uterine cancer with serious side affects from all the treatment and I have just gone in remission but the side affects will be there a very long time, I am 60 years old and have paid into this system for over 43 years and haven’t been able to work for 16mos and the doctor just found something on my thriod. And I was still denied after 7 1/2 mos waiting. Go figure!

            • Kay Derochie

              Dear Debra,

              File an appeal stating that you cannot work due to the side effects of the medicine. Have your oncologist write a letter that describes the side effects and an opinion of whether you can work or not and the reasons for the opinion. If you are going to a more testing of the thyroid, you might wait to appeal until you have the results of the test, but be sure you do not miss the deadline to appeal.

              Sincerely,
              Kay

  • hazzel

    Hi kay I wanted to ask you I applied for ssi for my child . I called my local office they said the medical has been approved but now my case was sent with a SSCR. What does that mean? Its been almost 2 weeks since there decision and I haven’t even received an award letter.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Hazzel,

      I believe that SSCR stands for Social Security Claims Representative. If so, it means that your son’s Supplemental Security Income (SSI) claim has to be reviewed to determine how much he is eligible to receive based on family income and assets. This usually requires an interview to update your financial information. I suggest that you call Social Security at 1-800-772-1213 to request an appointment for a post-approval SSI update interview.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • hazzel

        Thank u kay!

        • Kay Derochie

          You are welcome, Hazzel.

  • Susan

    I filed for disability benefits on June 24, 2014. I was in a MVA July 15, 1994. Since then I have had 3 surgeries on my left hip including a total hip replacement, 3 on my left knee including a partial knee replacement and 2 on my left forearm. I also have 3 small bulging discs in my lower back. I cannot sit for more than a few minutes without changing positions, when standing after sitting it takes me a few minutes to work out the “kinks” to stand up straight and start walking. I hurt all the time, I can’t even put my own socks and shoes on because of the pain and restrictions. My mom told me to call and see if they were waiting on anything from me so I did that on Friday 10-24-14 and was told they weren’t sure why it hadn’t been sent to my local state office yet for review. So yesterday 10-27-14 I called the local state office, they verified a bunch of information, the lady told me I qualified and also told me in the meantime to go the office and apply for SSI benefits. She told me the soonest my benefits could begin would be December 1, 2014 and pay would be begin January 1, 2015. She made it sound as though it was going to be approved. When I logged in prior to yesterday it would say a decision has not yet been made. This morning it says this “The Disability Determination Service in your State is processing the medical portion of your claim.” So what does this mean? Does this mean it will take another 4 months or longer or should I assume what she told me about December 1st is correct?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Susan,

      It sounds as if your Social Security claim has been approved and that monthly payments are set up to start with the month of December to be received in January. There is no reason to doubt specific dates given you. It is also possible that you have Social Security back pay coming for the period July 2013 through November 2014. You may have been invited to apply for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) due to a low Social Security benefit or to pay you benefits for the months before January. It also sounds as if the computer tracking system may not have been updated. Wait a couple weeks and if you haven’t gotten a confirming letter, call 1-800-772-1213 to see whether the payment has been set up. If it has not, recontact the representative you talked with in the local office to find out if your claim is on track to pay you benefits in January.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Susan

        Kay,

        Thank you for your reply, I am still waiting for an answer from SSA. I did call the number you gave me and was told they are still processing the medical portion of my claim. They then told me I had to contact the local office where I applied for SSI to find out the status of that which I did. The local office told me the SSI was pending the medical portion of my disability claim. No one can seem to give me a clear cut answer as to how long this will take or what the hold up is. They did confirm with me the places they have received medical records from which is pretty much all the places I listed on my application. Any suggestions on what to do know other than wait?

        Thank you,
        Susan

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Susan,

          As you describe the situation, you are in the waiting portion of the claim process. You could have a decision in a few weeks or much longer. Now that all your medical records are in, the wait time depends a lot on the size of your particular Disability Determination Services’ back log of claims.

          It is possible to receive both ongoing Social Security and SSI benefits if your Social Security is low enough (below $810 for a federal SSI benefit). Even if you are not eligible for both benefits ongoing, if you qualify for SSI financially, it will be paid for the months in which you didn’t receive Social Security while the claim pended. Your Social Security back pay will be reduced by the amount of SSI back pay you received for the same months.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

      • Susan

        I forgot to mention that when I called the state office back they told me when the lady said that I “qualified” what she mean was that I met the qualifications to apply for disability, whatever that is suppose to mean. I have been told a few different things and really am just at my wits end. I know a few other people who have applied and received a denial letter within 2-4 months. One friend was denied twice and now a third time and she has breast cancer which she has now been cleared cancer free so I am assuming that is why she didn’t qualify. I just don’t understand why mine is taking so long.

      • Susan

        I forgot one more thing, can you receive SSI and disability? your previous post made it sound that way. I wasn’t sure and I did ask but did not get a clear cut answer from SSA.

  • Jack

    I have had a permanent disability since I was 19 from a car accident in which I have 5 metal pins in my left ankle. There was a defect with the car, got some monies, now ran out of money, both parents passed away, have had 3 surgeries on ankle, 1983, 1996, 1997. I just applied for SSDI and applied for SSI. I heard from the rep SSI can be approved within 2 months after they get all my medical records. I called hospital and they have medical records for 1996 and 97. SSI rep said they will get records and I might have to go see one of there doctors. I have not worked for many years. Have trouble walking, permanent swelling of the ankle, pain, ankle does not move alot, nerve damage, numbness in toes, loss of feeling. I am single parent to young child, not married, child lives with me. Does SSI allow extra monies for single parent? I am running out of money, what can I do until SSI approves me?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Jack,

      SSI does not pay dependent benefits. If you can prove that you were disabled when you last worked, you might qualify for Social Security Disability (SSDI), which pays dependent benefits if your benefit is high enough. You might also contact your state’s Department of Vocational Rehabilitation to see if you qualify for job placement or job training for work that would not require you to be on your feet.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Hi Kay , My name is Isaac and am 42, I have HX of Liver Cirrhosis (alcohol abuse)and have had 3 esophagus varices banding and also have an ear malformation in which have had 2 aer Embolizations ,I had applied in June 2014 and have not heard from SSI, I cannot work since I feel weak and cannot balance my self, Do you know if I can qualify for disability?
    I have called and they tell me everuthing is going well

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Isaac,

      I cannot tell you whether you will qualify for Social Security or SSI disability. Benefits are not paid for alcohol abuse. I do not know how that restriction will factor into the evaluation of your alcohol-caused cirrhosis and esophageal erosion.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • veronica

    Forgot to mention he has been in medication since the age of 4 years old.

  • veronica

    Hi kay I have a question I applied for ssi for my child back in 2011 or 2010 don’t really remember but I was denied and I never appealed.I just applied again this past june I think I have a strong case and this time he will be approved. He has been dignosed with adhd severe depression he is bipolar and back in 2011 school diagnosed him with a emotional disturbance. My question is if he does get approved do they disabled him since he was first diagnosed with adhd at the age of 4 he is currently 12 now or does it count since I applied for the second time back of june of this year?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Veronica,

      Your son’s benefits, if he is approved, will be based on his current application; benefits will not be paid for months prior to the application.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Karen

    Kay,

    Is it true that an orginal SSDI claim decision can only be an approval or denial? Or can an original claim decision be partcially favorable due alleged onset date?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Karen,

      An original decision can be partially favorable. The examiner can find that the medical evidence supports that your disability began later than your claimed or that you were eligible but recovered so only back pay is due. Both of those decisions would be partially favorable.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Karen

        Thank you! You’re awesome at being helpful to others and may our God continue to bless you.

        • Kay Derochie

          Thank you, Karen.

  • veronica

    Hi I wanted to ask I applied for my son in july for social security . I called my examiner she said the medical had reached a decision already. She said that my case was sent to my local office and she gave me the name of my case worker. What does that mean why was it sent to a case worker is that good or bad?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Veronica,

      If you applied for disability for your child and he is a minor, you have applied for Supplemental Security Income (SSI), not Social Security. If that is the case and his claim was sent to the local office, the claim has probably been approved. The local office should contact you to update your financial information before starting payment. If you are not contacted in two weeks, contact them.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • veronica

        Thank you so much!

        • Kay Derochie

          You are welcome, Veronica.

  • Lin

    In June, I received my determination letter. It read that I met the medical conditions for disability with an effective date of 12/31/2013. Later in the letter was an explanation that the non-medical determination would be made “soon”. There were instructions not to call about my claim until the second letter is received.

    It is now October and I’m still waiting for the second letter. Weekly, I check SSA’s website and find that I am “currently not receiving benefits.”

    Is it unusual to wait this long for a non-medical determination?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Lin,

      You should call your local Social Security office. If you applied for Social Security only, ask the office to send a follow-up memo to the payment center because you should have gotten monthly payments started by now and be close to getting the back pay. Ask them to make sure that the payment center knows that Supplemental Security Income (SSI) was not involved. If you did also apply for SSI, you should have been contacted for an updating financial interview and received payment of SSI.

      Sincerely.
      Kay

  • TY

    Kay, I applied for SSD 5 months ago. I have an attorney, but he requires clients to do their own application initially, and if it is denied, then his office takes over the appeals. I am 3 months shy of 55 and I’ve suffered from severe DDD for 30 yrs. Had MRI done by ortho surgeon in Jan and was told every disc is deteriorated, and my back was inoperable and if I had surgery it would be worse and I could be left paralyzed. This is what the MRI summary was “Multilevel cervical spondylosis with with disc bulges and uncovertebral joint hypertrophy as Multilevel facet arthropathy changes also demonstrated with approximately 2 mm degenerative spondylolisthesis of C4 on C5. There is mild to moderate spondylotic thecal sac encroachment at the C3-C4 disc level,and to a milder extent rest of the cervical disc levels.Mild lumbar spine levoscoliosis with mild to minor degree of multilevel degenerative lumbar disc bulges as described above without any evidence for lumbar disc herniation nor spinal stenosis. These is mild to moderate left L4-L5, mild right L4-L5 and right L3-L4 forminal stenosis”. I also have been diagnosed w/Fibromyalgia by a Rheumatologist, which in my case not only causes pain, but CHRONIC sweating all over my body in all temperatures, to the point where I have to change clothes at work several times. (I sell clothing in a very UPSCALE men’s store) My Vascular Surgeon has diagnosed me with Chronic Vascular Insufficiency in my legs using ultrasound. I’ve been treated by the same Pain Management Dr for 20 years and he is backing me 100% and sent in with his records a Diminished Capacity Report saying that of all patients he’s treated I needed to be on Disability the most. I am also being treated by a Psychiatrist and a Therapist for Chronic Depression and Anxiety. I have personally sent in records from all these DRs. I have tried to work a few hrs a week, but it’s getting harder and harder. For the last five months I’ve gone from making $600 a month to about $300 now. (25 hrs a MONTH) I live in Baton ROuge. I’ve called and spoken with my case worker and she says ‘looks like we have everything we need, we’ll let you know if we need anything else”! I have to pay for my health insurance, and dr visits and meds. That uses up my entire $300 income a month. I don’t know how much longer I can even work 25 hrs a month. What is your advice? My lawyer’s office says “don’t bother them, you’ll tick them off. Your MRI alone and your age and lack of education (GED) is enough for an approval, not to mention the vascular issues/ Depression/Anxiety/Fibromyalgia.’ What do you think. Sorry this was so long!

    • TY

      Sorry, may I add when I check status I get: The Disability Determination Service in your State is processing the medical portion of your claim. I forgot to tell you that my job requires me to stand with no sit down breaks, lift heavy mannequins and boxes and dress in a coat and tie. Every day I work, My pain becomes unbearable ..I take Oxycontin 3 a day, Norco 3 a day, Flexeril 2 a day, Lyrica, Effexeron 3 a day, Adderall 2 on work days, Klonopin 2 a day, Seroquel 1 a day, 3 pain patches a day, Compound Pharmacy Pain Cream 2 times daily. Still unable to work more than 4 hrs without increasing my pain, and inability to sleep. I have Chronic Fatigue from the fibro and spend most of my time in bed. This all went into my application and the other forms that SSA sent me.

    • TY

      Sorry, may I add when I check status I get: The Disability Determination Service in your State is processing the medical portion of your claim. I forgot to tell you that my job requires me to stand with no sit down breaks, lift heavy mannequins and boxes and dress in a coat and tie. Every day I work, My pain becomes unbearable ..I take Oxycontin 3 a day, Norco 3 a day, Flexeril 2 a day, Lyrica, Effexeron 3 a day, Adderall 2 on work days, Klonopin 2 a day, Seroquel 1 a day, 3 pain patches a day, Compound Pharmacy Pain Cream 2 times daily. Still unable to work more than 4 hrs without increasing my pain, and inability to sleep. I have Chronic Fatigue from the fibro and spend most of my time in bed. Up one hr in bed one hr. Can not SIT . This all went into my application and the other forms that SSA sent me.

      • Kay Derochie

        Dear Ty,

        I am responding to your three postings. I suggest that your follow the advice of your attorney. The only exception would be if you are homeless (including temporary staying with others or are unable to access food); then you might ask your attorney to file a dire need request for critical (faster) handling.

        Sincerely,
        Kay

  • James

    Hello, I was just found unfit for the Military “The voard finds the Soldier is physically unfit and recommends a rating of 90% and that the Soldier’s disposition be Permanent Disability Retirement”. Disabilities are (1) PTSD, (2) Lumbar spine, degenerative disc disease with lumbar stenosis, sacolilitis, herniated nucleus pulposus, and post lamectomy syndrome, (3) Right lower extremity, sciatic nerve radiculopathy with myositis and extertional compartment syndrome, (4) Cervical spine, DDD, (5) Left lower extremity, sciatic nerve dadiculopathy with myositis and extertional compartment syndrome. I have been in the Army for almost 14 yrs and will not be able to stay in the Military. I have been working on a limited basis until Medical Evaluation Board stuff is completed. I have applied for SSD but was wondering how my working will affect everything because the Army has to pay you not like other jobs the you would be fired or quit. I know that I will be expidited because of Military but was wondering how long this might take as well. Thanks

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear James,

      I don’t have estimated processing time for critical case handling. If you are earning $1,070 gross monthly, you will not qualify for Social Security Disability. Please note that I said “earning.” If you getting full pay but not earning it because of very reduced work hours, I suggest that you talk to Social Security about this. It is possible that the portion of your pay that you are not earning might not be counted.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Susan

    ** I lleft out some important information. The last orthopedic we saw stated that based on the overal multilevel cahges he did not feel surgery was a good option. The other two orthopedics also stated that surgery was not an opition and basically he would just have to live with it. Which is the reason we traveled to another town to see anyother specialist in hopes for if not a cure some relief. We hope that SSA will not have to wait for the report from these other two physicians before makes a decision.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Susan,

      Be sure that they know about the additional medical and have the contact information for the medical provider; however, if they have enough information to approve your husband’s claim, they will not wait for the report.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Susan

    Ms. Kay,
    My husband will be 59 in a month. He has had to work since he was a teenage and the only work that he has every done has been in the textile industry and the tire industry. He had worked in the tire production plant for 30 years. He would have worked longer, but the pain from his back problem got to the point he could not longer continue on. He had hoped that he cold rest his back for a couple of months and be able to some type of work. Unfortunately, the rest did not work. He still has the chronic back pain. He has been seen by three different orthopedics and all in agreement with his dx. He has had 4-5 epidural injections that have offered every little relief in the beginning and non after that. He has been dx with multilevel spondylosis, disc bulge with associated neuroforaminal stenosis, severe disk collapse at 4-5 with retrolisthesis, 5 non rib bearing lumbar vertebra and multileve mild disk narrowing, multilevel Schmorl’s nodes with disk signal loss. The MRI showed bone on bone collapse at 4-5 He can’t sit, stand, walk or lay down for any length of time without changing positions. The last orthopedic we say state that based on the multilevel changes in his back condition thHe suffers from anxiety due to witnessing his mother attempts as suicide during his younger years. He also had mitravalve prolapse with regurgitation, for which he had valve repair in May 2014. He has not seemed to bounce back from this surgery still has palipations, dizziness, fatigue, and after the surgery has developed a vocal problem that does not allow him to speak more than 5 minutes without becoming very hoarse. He was seen by an ENT for this and it would discovered that one side of his vocal cords does not move. On top of this, since the surgery they have been unable to get his thyroid levels back with medication. The last blood test showed the Thyroid level at over 900 and they increased his medicaton. He has memory issues, that at first we thought were just a resulf of being sedated and on the ventilator, which after repeated visits to the doctor it is felt this is not the case. We have been referred to a nuerologist that we can’t get into see until November. We completed his initial claim, online, the first part of September. We hand delivered all the medical notes that we had concerning back treatment and his heart to date. We have since advised them of the visit with the ENT. The referral to a endocronologist which we will not see until Dec. as well as a neurologist that will can’t see until November. We have been living off my salary this entire time and things are tough. We could possible lose our home. I know everyone gets anxious about this. We are concerned that he will not qualify. He only has a high school diploma. I read in an early post mentioned about something to the effect as critical need. How do you request this? Also, I realize you are not an examiner but can you provide us with your opinion. We have been told and I have read on different website on this subject to expect denial the first tme. We are concerned about our finances and I worry about the toll the stress will add to his heart. We have left this is God’s hands and know he will provide.
    Thanks for your assistance with us and offering this outlet for others.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Susan,

      A lot of claims are approved on first application. Your husband has many conditions. If he is physically unable to do what he has done in the past and has speech limitations also, he may well be approved. If he is denied, you should definitely get a knowledgeable Social Security attorney and appeal. 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.

      Dire need processing is granted to the homeless, to those whose utilities have been cut off so their dwelling is inhabitable, those going without food, or those unable to access necessary medication or medical care.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • emily

    My friend has stage 4 ovarian cancer. Even though it’s on the list of compassionate allowances she’s been waiting over 4 months. She’s spoken with them they have everything they need. Why would they make someone with end stage metastatic cancer wait this long?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Emily,

      I do not know why the claim has pended so long. I suggest that your friend call again and ask whether her claim is being fast-tracked as a compassionate allowance. It is is not, ask what she needs to submit to get it on that track. When she gets the medical decision, she also needs to ask that the payment center fast track it due to her condition.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • David

    hello, Ive been suffering from major depressive disorder, OCD, PTSD, panic attacks, bi polar and borderline personality disorder as well as cervical spondylosis, cervical radicultis, cervical-optical neugia, migraines, DDD, high blood pressure, ashtma, obstructive sleep apnea and joint hypermobility syndrome. I have been fired from every job for not getting along with supervisors and co-workers and being agressive towards others. I have been seeing a licensed social worker for 15 months, a phyciatric nurse prat. for 1 year, a licensed pchycologist for 4 months, pschiatrist recently as well as a neurologist, neurosurgeon, pain management, primary dr and a rheumatoloist. I was wondering if you have any feedback if I would have enough evidence with these diagnosis. (I was also placed on FMLA since FEB 2014 on reduced work schedule and only sedentary work not lifting more then 20 lbs and no excessive walking/running)

    Thanks

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear David,

      Please clarify the following for me so I can respond: Are you currently working and, if so, how much is your gross pay per month?

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Angell

    My bf has chirrossis of the liver and Cancer.He filed disability almost 5months ago but no letters have came yet.So I would like to know how much longer for a response. Because his rent is draining my pockets dry as well as his medicines.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Angell,

      I suggest that your friend call the Disability Determination Services (DDS) where his claim is being processed and ask what else is needed to complete review of his claim and whether they need anything from him or his doctors. If he has a limited life expectancy, he could also apply for expedited handling of the claim. If he does not have the DDS phone number, the local Social Security office can give it to him.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Ashley

    Hi Kay. I’m a 30 year old woman who suffers from severe double vision, balance problems, muscle weakness, trouble breathing and fall frequently. I’ve had these symptoms for over 10 years but still no diagnosis. I applied for SSDI 2 months ago. Will my chances of being approved be affected because I don’t have a definitive diagnosis?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Ashley,

      I suggest that you supplement the medical evidence submitted for your claim by also submitting statements from family members, friends, clergy, and past employers that describe the symptoms they have seen. For example, perhaps people have seen you fall and could state the circumstances and frequency of their observations. It would also be helpful if your physicians made a statement that your reported symptoms are credible.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Debra

    Dear Kay, my paperwork was submitted to the doctors for review on August 8, 2014. I have been in contact with my disability examiner and last week she said they all updated info was given to the doctors to make a decision. Today I received a phone call from the examiner requesting a copy of my pet scan which will not be down until next week. She said this will tell them if there is any other type of work I can do, so I asked her if I would still qualify if I was in remission and she said oh yes you will the doctor just wants to know how far the Cancer has spread. With this info can you tell me if it sounds like I will be approved?? Thank you so much for your help.

    Sincerely,

    Deb

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Debra,

      Your conversation with the examiner seems a bit self-contradictory. If you can perform work other than you have done in the past and you are under age fifty, your claim will be denied. Whether or not your claim would be approved while you are in remission, depends on the residual limitations you have such as severe fatigue.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Debra

        Dear Kay, I know it did sound like that, I am 60 yrs old with stageIII C2 Grade 3 uterine cancer. After she mentioned the work, I then said would I still qualify for ssdi and that’s when she said oh yes you will the doctor just wants the pet scan to see how far the cancer spread. So yes I was confused as well. My cancer metastosis to pelvis and para-aortic nodes. Please advice. Thank you so much for your time

        Sincerely,

        Deb

        • Debra

          Continue from last post. Also the doctor has letters that I cannot sit, stand, or walk for any length of time do to the chemo and radiation treatments and yes I am fatigue. I forgot to mention this in my last post to you.
          Maybe the claims examiner had another file in her head when she responded to me about his request for the pet scan who knows but I do know I cannot return to the work force. Thank you again Kay for all your help!

          Sincerely,

          Deb

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Debra,

          Of course I can’t say for sure, but it sounds as if your claim is being approved and that the doctor is reviewing to decide if and when your claim will be reviewed for recovery in the future.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

          • Debra

            Dear Kay, Thank you so very much for all your knowledge and help it is so appreciated.

            Sincerely,

            Debra

            • Kay Derochie

              You are welcome, Debra.

  • Alicia

    Hello,
    I’ve been talking to my ssa, and have an attorney. My ssa has all information and is very kind. He told me they will make a decision within this week. I started this process in august. He sent me to see social security psychologist, as well as getting info from my treating lpn and hospital visits ( I suffer from anxiety and bipolar disorder). I know only being 24 is difficult to get disability, but its been 2 years i havent worked and it doesnt look like i will get much better. So, is it a good thing that theyre going to make a decision so quickly?

    – Alicia

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Alicia,

      It is good to have a timely processing of your claim because you will get an answer without waiting a long time; how long the claim pends is not an indication of either approval or denial. If you are denied and you really believe that you cannot work, ask your attorney to appeal for you.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Alicia

        Thank you for the reply. Is it true that the analyst makes a decision as well as the doctor at the social security determination department?

        -Alicia

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Alicia,

          The disability examiner, who is trained in Social Security Disability law and to a degree in medical conditions, investigates and analyzes your claim and makes the decision, but in many kinds of claims the examiners decision is a recommendation for approval or denial that has to be reviewed by an in-house physician to be sure the interpretation of the medical information is correct.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

          • Alicia

            Thank you so much Kay, i will be receiving a decision in the mail this week, fingers crossed

            – Alicia

            • Kay Derochie

              You are welcome, Alicia.

  • Cindy Barrett Buchanan

    Hi Kay, First let me applaud you for this website. I’m 56, applied for SSDI on 6/9/14. Haven’t worked since 5/10. Didn’t file earlier due to my spouse being very ill and I was his caregiver until he passed in May. I have plantar spurs with mild Haglund‘s deformity in both heels, DDD in both hips with spurring, osteoarthritis and space narrowing of the bilateral hip joint. There is spinal narrowing, spinal stenosis, joint arthrosis, disc herniation, kyphosis, bilateral foramina stenosis and unconvertebral joint arthrosis of my spine. The disc disease at C5 and C6 is now progressed to being severe from significant (2007). This is due to the uncovertebral joint arthrosis. I provided all the doctors information along with MRI’s and Xray’s that included the radiologist reports back as far as 2007.

    DDS sent me for a consultative medical exam on 8/5/14. I called DDS at the three month mark, 9/9/14 and was told the report from the doctor was received on 8/11/14. Last Friday, 9/26/14, I called DDS again and was told the application was sent to review on 9/12/14 and normally that takes only a couple weeks so I was at the two week mark when I called.

    Any ideas as to timeframe for a decision? And should I call again this week if I don’t hear anything. I don’t want to be a pest. Do you think I have enough issues for an approval?

    Thanks in advance for you time.

    • Cindy Barrett Buchanan

      I haven’t worked since 5/17/2010. Not 5/10 of this year.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Cindy,

      It is good that your claim has progressed every time you have called. I suggest waiting another week before calling because time frames quoted are estimates. Whether or not you are approved will depend on your functional limitations as related to the demands of occupations you have done in the past. If you are denied, I recommend obtaining 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 your retroactive award at the time they send your back pay to you. So, it’s all very easy and risk-free.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • cynthia martinez

    Hi i wanted to ask a question when i was pregnant with my daughter i had difficulty with her and i had her at 8months and know she is 10 years old but since she was born she had alot of problems like she was delayed alot on her walking and crawling and talking and sitting and stuff like that and we had a physical therapies come to the house every week to work with her she even went to child development place to help her with her physical therapy and with her motor skills and with helping to show her how to eat with a spoon and grasp well and she had to start going to a special school for her at the age of 3 years old and then from their tell know she been having I.E.P at the school and she is still delayed with her writing and with all of her school work right know she is in 4th grade but she is doing 1st grade work so she is doing very bad in school so i took her to a regional center to get help for her and we got approved and i found out that she has boarderline intellectual deficit and symptoms of ADHD do you think she will qualify for SSI she is having alot of problems with her work in school and she also has like mood fluctuations and anger issues can you please respond back and let me know if i should go apply for her for SSI because i applied before and they denied us like 2 times because then i didn’t know why she was so behind but know i know her problem can she qualify? ???? Thanks for your time you can email me back thanks

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Cynthia,

      It is worth a try to apply again. Submit the medical report with diagnoses and any school assessments. Then if she is denied, discuss the claim with a knowledgeable Social Security lawyer about the possible viability of an appeal. 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

  • Debra

    Hi Kay, just an fyi to my previous email, my friend has indicated that his irs debt is not a lien and does not show on his credit report, so would he have to pay irs with his disability income and back pay? But he does think the child support will show up on his credit report.. Thank you for your time.

    Sincerely,

    Debra

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Debra,

      The Social Security computer payment systems interfaces with the Internal Revenue Service computer to check for back taxes, so the garninsh will occur whether or not the tax debt shows up on his credit report. The same is true of state child support computers and the Social Security payment system.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Debra

        Thank you Kay, can you tell me what percentage they will take for an irs debt

        Thank you

        Debra

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Debra,

          Garnishment for a federal tax debt occurs if your Social Security is more than $750 monthly. If it is, the usual amount garnished is fifteen percent and the garnishment is accomplished by an automated process. Theoretically, a manually initiated garnishment for more than fifteen percent could occur, but I don’t know how often that actually happens.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

          • Debra

            Dear Kay,
            he is currently in an uncollectable status with irs, so he was told irs would not collect. I am not sure how true that is. Thank you so much for all your help in this matter

            Thank you
            Debra

            • Kay Derochie

              Dear Debra,

              The information is likely to be correct.

              Sincerely,
              Kay

  • Debra

    Hi Kay, a friend of mine was just approved for ssdi and he was told that if he owes any money to irs or money for child support it will be taken out of his back pay that ssdi is giving him? Is that correct? Or would he get all his back pay first and then deal with the money owed?
    I told him I would check with you because you know how the ssa works! Thank you

    Debra

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Debra,

      Back federal taxes and back child support can be withheld from your friend’s Social Security Disability back pay.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Debra

        Hi Kay, does ssdi research to see if you have back federal taxes and back child support before they issue your back pay? How does that work?

        Thank You,

        Debra

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Debra,

          Yes, before Social Security Disability (SSDI) back pay is released, the Social Security payment system interfaces with the Internal Revenue’s computer system and your state’s child-support computer system to search for back taxes and child support that is owed. If one of these debts exists, collection will be made from back benefits.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  • Lauren

    Also Kay. I have read that babies born before the 40 weeks. Premature. Down the line in life develop health issues.

  • Lauren

    Hi Kay,

    My 14 month old daughter was born at 36 weeks premature. We both were really sick and stayed in the hospital for 6 days. After that, my daughter has been really sick. She can’t fight any infection off by herself without medicine. She was diagnosed with bronchitis and takes a breathing treatment as needed. We have it under control, but she Doesn’t get seen for it. As if she’s sick. Just as needed. In addition in the past month she was diagnosed by a neurologist that she has a tic disorder. But the doctor she saw, said he Dosnt see any further medicial issue down the line. My question is, that she is a baby. Tic’s don’t go away or who is to say this is to get better or worse. They are bad for her right now. We did see a ssi doctor. But they mainly focused on her brontictis disorder. Is it possible that she can get approved by ssi if she has a tic disorder but the doctor thinks it’s not serious? And can she get approved if she has never been seen by a doctor for her brontictis ? Thanks Kay. Please help. She was a premie but her weight was okay.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Lauren,

      Your daughter’s SSI disability claim will be evaluated based on her current condition. If the tic is not serious, then it is unlikely she will be approved based on it. The consultative examination she was sent to could result in her being approved if her condition is serious enough.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Bill

    I’m almost 60 and have a history of heart problems. From 5 bypass cardiovascular surgery in 2004. In 2012 I had a heart attack and since I have had to have several stints and one angioplasty procedures.

    My cardiologist says my EKG readings show my heart is like a major interstate system with many detours* I need to go on SSDI has I cannot hold onto my job much longer as I cannot meet the physical requirements. I have worked for this employer 17 years.

    Also, I am being treated for a new health issue, skin cancers. Do you think I might qualify for a rapid evaluation with Social Security. I am going to be able to continue working much longer.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Bill,

      You have to either stop work or reduce your earnings to less than $1,070 before you apply or your claim will be denied. Your claim will probably not qualify for expedited handling, but you can help the processing of your claim by being thorough in the completion of the application papers and attaching copies of your most recent EKG and other cardiac test reports. It is also important to list all the duties and physical requirements of your job. You might discuss the physical requirements with your cardiologist to see if he or she will make a statement supporting disability. Also check with your employer to find out if you are covered by a short-term disability policy through your employment.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Alexis

    Hi,
    I applied for disability due to pregnancy a month ago, and its still says pending processing. I am not due until Dec but due to medical conditions due to my pregnancy I cant work. I live on my own and have no income at the time… how long until I receive my check?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Alexis,

      To be eligible for disability payments under the Social Security or Supplemental Security Income programs, you must be expected to be disabled for a period of twelve months or more. If your disability will end when you deliver the baby, your claim will likely be denied. I suggest that you contact your state or county health and human services to see whether any benefits are payable because you are pregnant.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Lawrence

    On what grounds can it be determined that a disability is expected to last twelve months? In December 2013, I fell while working and severely dislocated my elbow, requiring surgery, and as a result, developed adhesive capsulitis (frozen shoulder) which still, despite non anesthetical manipulation and over 100 visits to physical therapy, is not working properly. Considering that it has been only 9 months, how do is it determined that I will be unable to return to work in three months? My last compensation report (May 2014) from the compensation doctor stated a “marked degree of paratial disability”. I have another compensation doctor visit in October. Given my current job skills and qualifications, I am unable to find gainful employment. How is such a determination made?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Lawrence,

      If you believe that you are not physically able to do any occupation for which you are qualified (whether or not a job is available), then I suggest that you apply for Social Security Disability benefits now. By the time you complete the application and it gets reviewed, it will be close to twelve months and it is likely that a prognosis can be made. It could be helpful for your physician to write up a statement about if or when your condition will improve. (Frozen shoulders can spontaneously resolve themselves within one to two years.) You can also get your workers comp records and submit them.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Megan

    Hello. My husband is 34 and had to resign his surveying job due to extreme fatigue and numbness in his arms and legs. We thought it was due to his herniated discs and nerve root impingement. After he resigned in July, he was diagnosed with MS. He has applied for disability benefits. Is he likely to be approved? If so, what is the five-month unpaid period? Does that mean the payments, if approved, would not start until five months after his resignations? I work but cannot completely cover all of our bills. I got a second job but the hours and pay is not enough to help cover everything either. We are about to exhaust all of our savings plus the bills are coming in from all the tests that were done on him. I don’t think he can manage to work full time. If he was able to work part time but made less than $1070 a month, could he do that and still be approved for benefits? Thank you for your help.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Megan,

      Your husband will be approved if his MS condition is so severe that he cannot perform substantial work in any occupation for which he is qualified. If he works and makes less than $1,070 gross and is working at his full capacity, then his work should not interfere with approval. The five-month unpaid waiting period for Social Security Disability begins the month after he resigned unless his first day off work was the first of the month, so benefits if payable would begin to accrue January 2015. Your husband might check with his employer to find out whether the company has a short-term disability policy that covers him or whether he can withdraw his resignation and receive accrued sick pay.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Debra

    Dear Kay, Can you tell me if you received my comment last night? I was having computer problems and thought I sent it twice, not sure. I notice that you have answered other comments that were sent after mine so I am worries you did not get it, please let me know. Thank you for your time, Debra

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Debra,

      Please see my response to your first inquiry, which I posted on September 11 at 5:32 p.m. Pacific Daylight Time.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • ron cee

    My claim has been looked at in Harrisburg and now has been sent to my local ssi dept….do you know how much longer it will take for a determination

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Ron,

      If your claim has been medically approved, it can take from a couple weeks to a couple months after a medical decision has been made for payment to start. If you have not heard from the local office within two weeks of the date the claim was sent to the office, I suggest calling to make an appointment to review what else needs to be done to finish your claim and to see whether the Social Security Administration needs anything from you.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Debra

    Dear Kay, if of all I did send you this earlier but it disappeared so I am sending another one. I am 60 years old and I have stage IIIC2 Grade 3 endometriosis/ uterine cancer I had a radical hyst. Nov 2013 and completed 6 rounds of chemo, 25 external radiation, 3 internal radiation the end of July 2014. I filed for disability March 2014. My disability examiner said she has sent all my records and information to the medical team to review and make a decision. I did tell her that 2 of my doctors would be faxing her updated info because I am having sever side affects which will be long term, the consist of constant back pain and i cannot stand, sit or walk any length of time do to the aggressive treatment I was given. My examiner did say she felt she had enough information to make a determination but that she would forward it once she received it. I would like to know if you feel I would be approved with the information I have given you. Also I have been unemployed for 14 months now. My claim was put on hold in June because they wanted to wait for the 12 month period to be up before proceeding with my claim and it opened up again and back in process as of July 2014. My disability ordered me to see one of their doctors for my depression which was done on Aug 5th and the examiner has received the report. Could you please advise as to your thought on me being approved with my condition. Thank you. Debra

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Debra,

      Please see my reply to your previous posting.

      Thank you,

      Kay

    • Michael

      sorry to hear about the long wait, i myself have pancreatic cancer as of this august and a case worker at my hospital help me apply for ssi and 2 weeks later i had a check in my mail box, although i think my cancer is far worse then yours i still cant imagine having to wait that long,you need to keep on them, from your case worker to your doctors to even your local politicians. i hope everything works out for you soon. have a nice day and better tomorrows.

  • Debra

    Dear Kay, I am 60 years old. I filed for disability March 2014, I have Stage III C2 Grade 3 endometriosis / uterine cancer. I did get a letter stating my case is on hold until the 12 month period which was met in July 2014 and it was being worked on again at that time. I have been in contact with my social security disability examiner and helping to make sure she has all paper work needed from my 3 doctors and hospital. I have completed all treatment which were 6 rounds of chemo, 25 external radiation treatments and 3 internal radiation treatments. Now I am suffering from the side affects which I am unable to sit, stand or walk any length of time because of the aggressive cancer treatment I was given, my back hurts all the time and I do not sleep well because of this. I still have fatigue just from the treatments. I told my examiner that one of my doctors was updating my records to show this problem and she would have them soon and my other doctor was writing a letter stating my problem and that it would be long term, the examiner did say she felt they had enough information to make a decision but she can still send it in and she will forward to the medical team because she has turn my paper work over to them already. I just need to know your opinion about me getting approved. I have not had my pet scan as of yet still waiting for insurance to approved the request. Then I will know if I am in remission. Please advise. Thank you

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Debra,

      Of course, I can’t be sure; but usually an examiner will not proceed with a denial when a claimant says that she has more documentation to submit. So, the decision in process may be an approval.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Debra

        Dear Kay, Thank you so much for you response. I appreciate your time and the job you are doing by helping us all.

        Sincerely,

        Debra

        • Kay Derochie

          You are welcome, Debra.

  • Tiffany Oliver

    Hi, I filed for disability in April 2014 , I’m taking meds from the mental health center for depression, anexiety attacks, and for help sleeping at night my meds are buspirone hcl, hydroxzine pam, and risperidone. I received a phone call from the disability determiation the lady I talked with mention to me about my vision from a claim I filed in 2011 she said my vision wasn’t 20/20 so she sent me to one of there doctors I do were glasses but I didn’t mention my vision in my claim this round and I’m on blood pressure meds for chronic hypertenion. Is there a chance I can be aproved.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Tiffany,

      I am not able to predict whether or not your claim will be approved.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • jess

    I tried applying for disability after having brain surgery is that a medical condition? cause the have denied me several times i went to apply i cant do a lot of work hours or handle much noise wasnt able to complete school 10yrs from it.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Jess,

      I suggest that you discuss your condition and any limitations or symptoms you have with a knowledgeable Social Security attorney to determine whether to appeal a second time and to have legal assistance if you do appeal. 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

  • Jennifer

    I have signed up for SSI, I have a kidney disease since I was born, a hearing impairment due to ear infections when I was about 5 or 6, speech impairment. And now nerve damage and chronic shoulder pain. I was denied because they said I can’t get benefits after I have gotten an injury at 22? I don’t believe this to be true? I have filed for reconsideration stage and it’s been at least 6 months. What are my chances of being approved?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Jennifer,

      It sounds as if the benefit for which you have been denied is Disabled Adult Child (DAC) benefits payable on a parent’s earnings record. The DAC benefits requires that you become disabled before age twenty-two. For your appeal, you need to show how you were disabled not considering the nerve damage and chronic shoulder pain if they began at age twenty-two or later.If you also applied for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) disability, all medical conditions will be considered regardless of when the conditions began. Therefore, you may still have an SSI claim pending.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Jennifer

        So then I still should have a SSI claim pending from the application stage then? They really should make this more clear in the denial letter. All I got was the reason for denial. Should I ask what claim is pending?

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Jennifer,

          Yes, it would be a good idea to check to see if you still have an SSI claim being processed. If not, request a copy of the letter of decision, which you have not received.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  • Kim

    I had my hearing in April, it’s been almost 5 months and I haven’t heard anything. My lawyer hasn’t either. What should I do?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Kim,

      You can call the hearing office to find out where you are in the hearing process. You may find that the decision has been made and you claim is in the letter writing department, meaning that you are moving toward getting a decision letter.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • angela

    I have a reconsideration claim pending since June 12th. I have spoken to the dds examiner and she tells me it is in its final process and a decision should be made shortly. She has also told me that have everything they need to make a decision. I have went through the SSA bluebook and have found my listed impairment and its criteria to qualify. I have my case file from our local SSA office and I have found in my medical records the evidence to support the I pairment listing and the criteria to support the listing. With this evidence do I have a shot at getting my reconsideration approved

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Angela,

      Assuming that you presented all this information to Social Security in support of your reconsideration, it does look as if you would have a chance to be approved.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Tramaine

    I faxed all my documents for my appeal back to my DDS on a Tuesday and they made a decision on a Friday , is that a good or bad thing…. I’m just waiting on my results now in the mail , my child has ADHD

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Tremaine,

      It is excellent that the DDS examiner acted so quickly to get you a decision. The quick action, however, is not an indicator of whether your son has been approved or denied.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Jay

    My question is I was told a decision had been made by the specialist that was handling my claim. So when I called the 800 number I was told it’s on hold can you explain to me what that means.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Jay,

      It is possible that your claim was randomly selected for a quality assurance review. I suggest that you call the specialist or 800 number again to get a clarification of what “on hold” means.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Crystal

    Hi kay, I’m 35 and i was diagnosed 11/2013 with full blown AIDS. I haven’t worked since 2008, when i became a full time mom. I worked before that, by not having worked in so long will i still be eligible for benefits?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Crystal,

      To be insured for Social Security Disability (SSD), you have to have earned twenty quarters of coverage (work credits) in the five years immediately preceding the onset of your disability. Your might be insured if you earned four quarters in each of the five years before you stopped work. If you are not insured and if your family income is limited, you might be eligible for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) disability. If you are expected to be disabled for twelve months, I suggest that you file an SSD claim. The Social Security office will screen for SSI financial eligibility at the same time.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • april c

    I am 39yrs old was dx with lupus about 17 yrs ago. I have worked the whole time. In feb 2014 I had a bad flare up which caused me to not be able to walk. I did get better. I applied for ssdi in march this year online. No decision has been made it just keep telling me, medical processing. They have all the records how long do u think for a definate decision?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear April,

      I suggest that you call the Disability Determination Services (DDS) and talk with the examiner. Politely point out that your claim has been pending five months. Ask her what remains to be done to get a decision on your claim and whether she needs anything from you or your medical providers. Then ask for an estimated completion date. If you aren’t notified within ten days of the estimated date, call again and ask the same.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • april c

        Thank you, I have never called to speak with anyone.

        • Kay Derochie

          You are welcome, April.

  • Debbi

    Hello Kay,
    I filled for Disability in March 2014 for Sever back and neck pain, Osteo & Rheumatoid Arthritis, Chronic Migraines, Chronic numbness in hands & Fibromyalgia. They sent me to one of their doctors Aug 13th, I didn’t think it went well with him, he never even asked me about arthritis or hand numbness only about Fibromyalgia. I thought for sure I was going to be denied and need to hire an attorney. Then yesterday I received a call from SSD wanting to know my job descriptions for the last several years, she said it wasn’t completed on my application. Why would they ask that type of question if they doctor they sent me to didn’t verify my condition? I called this morning for a status update and was told a decision was made yesterday and I would be getting an email. Do you think it is a good sign that they asked additional questions? Who knows how long it will take to get the letter.
    Thank you in advance for your response.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Debbi,

      All claims have to include information about past work. Limitations caused by your medical conditions have to be compared to the physical and mental demands of your past jobs. Also past jobs provide information about skills you could transfer to other jobs. The fact that you were told you would get an email rather than a letter leads me to believe that you may have been medically approved.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • shelly

    Hello…I applied online for disability on aug. 6 2014 for the first time so I dnt really know the process..on aug.13 I chked online status and it said a decision has been made. And I will get a letter. Im separated from my husband and I have no work history. I had knee surgery in april and have osteoarthritis in my knee along with terrible pain and swelling just as bfor surg. I now hav post phlebetic syndrome. Depression and a buldging disc..is that time frame too quick for an approval? How long may it be bfor I get a decision letter?
    Thank you.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Shelly,

      You may get two decision letters–one saying that you are not insured for Social Security Disability and one for Supplemental Security Income (SSI). The decision that has been made is probably only for Social Security because not enough time has passed for a medical evaluation for the SSI.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Jeannette knight

    I just called SSA to find out the status of my claim. They said a recommendation was made and I will get a letter. What does that mean? Could that mean I was approved?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Jeannette,

      It sounds as if the examiner made a recommendation that is being reviewed by a physician at the Disability Determination Services. When the recommendation has been approved, you will be notified. It is not possible to know whether the recommendation is an approval or denial.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • aimie

    Dear Kay,
    I applied almost 120 days ago. . Exact date I can not remember. I am 25 yrs old and I have been diagnosed with Ocd, severe depression and PTSD. Basically due to the extremity of my PTSD and depression I dont and cant leave my house due to attacks (panic, anxiety etc) I have been treated for this for 5 years plus (a 3 yr gap in counseling due to no insurance) . I have recently talked to my counselor about my claim and she said she definitely will vouche for me as it would be near impossible to find an employer that would be understanding to everything I have. Should I call my claim worker and tell him? It being so long is that a good sign? I should also state I I have done the mental ce and such.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Aime,

      Have your counselor write a letter supporting your claim. The letter should indicate the specific reasons that you cannot work. Then submit the letter to the examiner.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Josh

    Hello, In 2006 I applied for temporary disability and was denied. After getting a lawyer and appealing the case I was awarded the temporary disability backpay. Now in March of this year I applied for permanent disability. I have a doctor appointment sit up by my caseworker in a couple of weeks. My question is, does the fact that I was once awarded temporary disability and having a doctor appointment sit up by my caseworker, make my chances of being approved positive?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Josh,

      You should be sure that Social Security has your medical history and your previous period of disability; however, your claim will be evaluated based on your current condition, not what is was in 2006. I assume the medical appointment you reference was requested by Social Security. If so, the appointment is to gather information that was not in your claim file. It is neither a good nor bad sign.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Sarah

    Hello, I have a 9 year old son with bipolar, schizophrenia, ADHD, ODD, and anxiety along with mild autism and tourrettes. I applied for SSI for him. My husband makes good money. His doctor ways if we are denied we’ll appeal. My son has already been at Mayo Clinic’s Generose twice.
    He is in need of weekly therapy and I have to homeschool him because he is not able to function as a normal child outside the home. The local school district does not have the correct special education license to help him and isn’t even returning my emails or phone calls. He was previously in a private Lutheran school who also doesn’t have the correct state license for him.
    I am wondering what our chances of getting an approval is?
    I applied for him online and have had the interview.
    Thank you. Sarah

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Sarah,

      You said that your husband makes “good money.” If your family income is too high for the number of people being supported (you, your husband, and other non-disabled children), your son will not be eligible for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) because SSI is a benefit for disabled children whose family has limited income and assets. If your son qualifies financially, as you describe his condition, I would expect him to be approved.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Bree

    Hello, I have applied for SSDI and SSI. It has been about four months and my status on the SSA website has gone from “..processing the medical portion of your application..a decision has not yet been made” to just “a decision has not yet been made”. I recently moved and received a call from my former address that I just got two letters from the FL dept of health (DDS) and one might have been from SSA directly. I called the DDS and was told my case has been sent back to Social security and I will be receiving a letter from them (DDS) and from SSA and I should update my address with SS. I asked if the letters contained time sensitive information that needed action from me and he said no and to wait for the letter.. I am being sent the letters from my old address but it could take a while and the anticipation is killing me. Would I get two denial letters, one from DDS and one from SS?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Bree,

      You would not ordinarily get two medical denial letters. One possibility is that you could be denied Social Security because they didn’t find you disabled while you were insured (a letter from DDS) and be approved for Supplemental Security Income (SSI), which would result in a letter from the Social Security office. Do contact your local Social Security office to report your new address for your still-pending claim.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

      • Bree

        Thank you for your response. I first applied in VA and got a letter saying I have enough credits from working to qualify if I am found to be disabled. I did not finish the application because I moved to florida and completed it down here but when I looked at my old letters from the SSA in VA it said I claimed my alleged date of onset was march 24 2014. I am hoping when I completed the application I corrected that but the SS website has disabled my online access. If that is the date it is a mistake, is there any way I wan correct that date, whether I am denied or approved?

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Bree,

          Contact Social Security in Florida and tell them you may have made an error in listing the date that you became disabled and that you want to be sure that your pending claim shows the correct date. They can look this up and tell you. If it is wrong, ask to submit a written statement to correct the date. If you have the phone number of the Disability Determination Services (DDS) call DDS about ten days after you submit the corrective statement to be sure they know about the change.

          Sincerely,

          Kay

  • Lilitaly

    My mom got ssi for me because my dad till I was 18 (survival pay). I’m 29 and I applyed for ssdi and ssi the beginning of 2014. I found out in 3/2014 that I have a peraspinal mass in my lower back. Lost my job and insurance. Took me till June to get my insurance worked out bit still not working and now have to have surgery to get it removed in 3 weeks aug. I was born with PTSD of the womb due to my dads suicide, PTSD as a kid due to parents fighting and step dad’s addiction problems, diagnosed depression since 2001 anxiety, insomnia, separation problems and have had nerve pain/muscle spasms over ten years. Moving back with my parents wouldn’t help me. I’m losing all options, my unemployment is out and I have no income and the doctors still don’t know how long recovery will be before I can go back to work. I took a test on the SS website and it said I could qualify for surval disability and ssi. Is that possibal? Also is there anything I can do to find anything out from the disability determination people?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Lilitaly,

      I suggest talking with your doctor to see if there is a possibility that you will be disabled for twelve months or more. If so, you might be eligible. The only way to find out for sure is to apply. If you worked for a length of time, more than three to six months, and your earnings were substantial, you probably will not qualify for disabled adult child survivor benefits because to be eligible you must be continuously disabled since prior to age twenty-two. You might however qualify for Social Security Disability (SSDI) on your own earnings record if you have enough work or for Supplemental Security Income (SSI).

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  • Mary

    Dear Kay,
    I am 59 years old and applied for disability in June 2014. I had a thyroidectomy in 2006 and endometrial cancer in 2004. The thyroidectomy has left me exhausted and with a lot of mental confusion. I worked for many years and was laid off in 2012. This was a job that accommodated my disability with allowing me to take time off when needed, ticketing department for an arts organization. What are your thoughts about possibility for approval? I am exhausted and primarily emphasized hypothyroidism as a result of the thyroidectomy.
    Any advise would be helpful. If rejected, which I expect should I appeal?
    Thanks very much.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Mary,

      If you have not applied for benefits, I suggest that you do so. If you are denied, get a copy of your claim file to see the exact reasons for the denial. If you think the decision is wrong and really believe you cannot work, hire an attorney to help with the reconsideration appeal. 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

  • Anna

    Hello,
    I started my claim Feburary 2014. My application is for Mental disorders;depression, anxiety, manic bipolar and agoraphobia The individual handling my claim told me that my application had been reviewed and signed off on by their medical doctors. He said that he would be finished with it by the end of July and it would be sent to my local office for review and that I should here something from them in a week or two after they received it.He sounded positive but obviously he couldn’t tell me anything. He said my age is a benefit in my case. I am 55 and have worked for 38 years. Are things looking in my favor or am I reading hope into what he is saying. Also the onset of my disability is stated as being February of 2013, is there a chance I could receive back benefits? As lots of others in these situations Ive not a penny to my name and my savings is gone.
    Thank you for your time
    Anna

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Anna,

      The person you spoke to makes it sound as if you have been medically approved. If Social Security accepts February 2013 as the onset of your disability, your benefits will begin to accrue August 2013.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  • Kathy

    Dear Kay, My husband has been unable to work since a deep vein thrombosis in 2011…subsequently he developed RSD in his right ankle although it wasn’t discovered until over a year later. He can’t stand or walk for long periods of time, and he has to elevate his leg several times a day to limit swelling. He’s in constant pain and takes Nerve medication, anti-depressant, and hydrocodone for pain. He is often in a high state from the meds and sleeps at least 11 hours out of a day. I have seen him have flare ups from a couple hours of work. He is currently awaiting disability hearing and his new pain specialist is suggesting a spinal cord stimulator… My question is will the fact that they want to try this procedure which may or may not work, delay his case? His hearing is in about 6 weeks and I’m really curious about how this upcoming scs trial may affect his claim.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Kathy,

      Your husband’s planned treatment will not delay his hearing date as long as it doesn’t keep him from attending the hearing.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  • Lori

    I applied for disability in April 2014. I had 2 strokes on 6/1/13 and in August 2013 I returned to my job of 10 yrs and had to quit after 4 weeks because of issues. I suffer short term memory loss, headaches, depression, anxiety and OCD and PBA. I saw 2 state doctors last week, one for a physical and one for the memory and depression. I am under the care of my family doctor and a neurologist. I can’t drive or do most work in the home. I suffer with dizzy spells and balance issues. Since it has been a year since my strokes and I am still not working due to the issues I am having will I have an easier time in receiving disability? I am 53 year old and have a high school diploma. I was in accounting when my strokes occured. Thank you

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Lori,

      The deficits that you indicate you still have a year after your strokes occurred could qualify you for benefits.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

      • Lori

        Thank you for your answer. They called today and said they would have an answer by the end of the week. Keeping fingers crossed. I have using my 401K for income.

        • Kay Derochie

          Thanks for the update, Lori.

          • Lori

            Received the denial letter today. They said there is a job I could do. I wish they would tell me what it is since I have been trying for a year and no one wants to hire me.

            • Kay Derochie

              Dear Lori,

              Having trouble finding a job does not necessarily mean that you are disabled. However, you have the right to request a copy of your claim file. The file will show the occupations they have identified that they believe you can do. If you disagree, then it would be appropriate to file an appeal stating exactly why you cannot do the jobs they identified. You might also discuss your case with a Social Security attorney to get an attorney’s opinion on whether you qualify for benefits.

              Sincerely,

              Kay

  • shaureenmccord

    I applied 3/7/2014..im 41 years old with severe asthma and COPD..i seen the doctors which prove i have asthma and COPD..i also sent all the medical records about my asthma and COPD..i haven’t worked since 2013 cause my asthma and COPD is really taken affected and its hard to breathe. Im always in ER or been hospitalized.i checked my claim status it says processing medical records in my state…how long does it takes to know if i been denied or approved. .do you think i will be eligible

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Shaureen,

      It is typically taking two to five months for initial claim processing. If you have not received a decision by mid-August, I suggest that you call the Disability Determination Services (DDS) to ask if they need anything from you, what still has to be done, and when they expect completion. Your local office can give you the DDS phone number.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  • JD Flinn

    Hi,
    I was born with a left arm injury know as “Partial bracial palsy” All muscle and tendons were torn out. I’m 50 now and my left arm quit growing at 16 yrs old. I have worked for 32 yrs and about 12 yrs ago, a Dr in Ohio told me I have carpal tunnel in my right hand. A lot of the activities that I attempted are getting near impossible to preform. getting dressed is a job in it’s self. My left foot is also numb all the time for about 2 yrs now. My Dr said I need back surgery. T get surgery, I would need help with even the simple stuff, like using restroom. I also have PTSD from a horrible abusive ex, I went to SSI Drs in early June.
    how long does it take to hear a determination? And if I need a lawyer if turned down, can you recommend a good one in Georgia?

    Thank you,
    JD

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear JD,

      How long it will take to complete processing your claim is hard to predict. I suggest that, if you have not heard by about August 15, you call the examiner that asked you to attend the consultative examination. Remind him or her of the date you saw the doctors and ask what else is needed to complete review of your claim and for an anticipated completion date.

      If you are denied, obtain and 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 your retroactive award at the time they send your back pay to you. So, it’s all very easy and risk-free.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  • Nicole

    Hi, I started filing back in February of this year. I have agoraphobia and can’t leave the house due to it. A few weeks ago they sent a doctor here for an appointment/evaluation. I was wondering how much longer do you think it will take for me to find out after my evaluation?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Nicole,

      The guideline for the doctor to submit his report is three weeks. After that, it can take a month or more to get a decision.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  • Dutch

    I started my ssi claim in 12/12/2013. I saw 2 docs n both agree,I have psychiatric issues.My primary doc prescribe me cymbalta, carbamazepine n quotaIapine fumarate.Its been 7 months with know decision.I called ssi n talked to my case worker, but she said,”their doc have to review my case, then they will make a decision”.Also,when i was 5yrs old i had 6 operation done on my head:long story, but i used to get ssi:meds:Prozac,etc.Until the age of 17yrs old.It stop because as I got older,I wanted more thangs for myself,so I started working different jobs.Will that info help my case(use to get ssi in the past) n what do u think will happen with my claim . Meaning how long it’s going to take n what decision they might make on my claim…..

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Dutch,

      If the claim has been sent to an in-house physician for review, it is in the final stages of the review. If you have not told the examiner about your childhood brain surgeries and the fact that your received SSI in the past, you should do so; but you also need to explain why you had to stop work after working as an adult, that is, what is worse about your condition now than when you started to work when you were a young adult.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  • Joleesah

    Hi Kay. I am 22 yrs old and when I was 20 yrs old in 2012 I had a brain tumor. So I had to have surgery and they didn’t get to move all of the tumor…Plus I had radiation and had to be in a rehabiliton center for two months to learn how to walk again and learn how to feed myself and hold myself up again.Which means I was in a will chair..But after all that I ‘m still continuing to have seizures and it’s now 2014.And I am mostly in out the hospital.I called the disability determination services in my state which is Charlotte NC and they said all of my doctors responded back to them and I had my interview May 27,2014 what do you think the results will be or are you not sure…

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Jeleesah,

      I cannot predict the outcome of your claim for sure, but it may be approved. If it is not, I recommend getting a copy of your claim file and a knowledgeable Social Security attorney to file the appeal. 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

  • Steve Marks

    Hi Kay,
    At the beginning of June, I applied for SSDI and SSI. I have severe Gout, and I have had this condition for the better part of 25 years, however I am only 46. My feet are both deformed and I have it in both ankles, knee, hip, shoulder, fingers and its coming in the top of my hands. One wrist doesn’t bend. I have had Nephrotic Syndrome and have spilled most of my protein all of my life. These conditions have been with me for so long that I have learned to deal with them, and consequently haven’t seen a doctor for either of them in more years than you can count. There wasn’t much treatment for Gout in the 80s and so I dealt with it as best I could. Unfortunately having gout for so long has contributed to a poor work history, therefore I was told when I applied that I was not eligible for SSDI. Within 1 week I received the letter denying the SSDI claim. 1 week later I was given an appointment to see a doctor from Disability Determination Services. The report from that doctor says the same thing I wrote in this post, along with an x-ray of one of my feet. Is this an expedited claim? I am getting hammered by SS attorneys that want to take my case, and while I know that its in my best interest to have an attorney if this case is initially denied, I hesitate to feed the sharks as IMHO it seems they are wasting no time with my case. Am I likely to hear from the quickly, or should I consider the attorneys?
    Thank you for your time and consideration. Any insight is appreciated.
    Sincerely, Steven Marks

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Steve,

      Your claim may have been fast-tracked or you may have just gotten lucky in living in an area where there’s not much of a backlog. I would hold off in getting an attorney for your intitial claim. If you are denied, then getting an attorney is a good idea; however, it should be someone very knowledgeable in Social Security Disability law. 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

  • Adam Morrison

    HI,

    My partner was on SSDI for over 20 years, he is manic depressive, bi polar and has PTSD. On one of his manic highs he ended up getting a job while looking for somwthing to get out of the house a few hours a week and the job hired him on making a significant amount of money. So in an effort to take care of the family he continued to work for about three and a half years. Every day working for him he was on a manic high and was crazy to be around but the money was his driving factor. So he ended up not qualifying for his SSDI of course, and suddenly one day he quit his job and has since fallin into a deep depression. I have been taking him to all of his appointments and we have re-applied for his benifits. I spoke with SSA today and they said they have made a decision and it is being mailed. My question is after being on SSDI for so long and having an extencive medical history what are the chances of him qualifying and being approved? we applied Feb 18 2014.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Adam,

      Whether or not your partner is approved will depend on this current condition as it has been since he ceased work this last time.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  • Christina Martinez

    I got a phone call stating that my claim had been expedited, and that I should receive a decision within two weeks. I stopped working in 9/13, I applied for disability and SSI in 1/14. I have multiple issues, an autonomic nerve disorder that causes heart and nervous system problems, possible Multiple endocrine neoplasia II, spinal stenosis, depression, ADHD, hypoglycemia, Splenomegaly, Nerve root compression, thoracic kyphosis, I have already been out of work for about 10 months, I talked to the supervisor a few weeks ago, because I am a 100% single mother with 3 children 5 and under, and we are about to lose our home. Does this mean that we are likely getting an approval, and if so, how long will it take to actually start getting money if I am?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Christina,

      I can’t say for sure that you will be approved; it depends on how severely the symptoms from your several medical conditions affect your functioning. If you are approved, it usually takes from a few weeks to two months or more to get benefits started. Because they have expedited the medical review, you might be able to get expedited processing for payment. It won’t hurt to ask. Also, because you are about to lose your home, you can ask that your back Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits be paid all at once and not in installments.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

      Sincerely,

      Kay

      • Christina Martinez

        Thank you so much for answering my question. I found out Friday that they have reached a decision on my case, but of course, I don’t know what it is, they couldn’t tell me over the phone. I am going to the SS office tomorrow to see what, if anything, they can tell me. I appreciate your information, thank you so much for helping people with this stressful process. 🙂

        • Kay Derochie

          You are welcome, Christina.

  • john nichols

    I reapplied for disability on dec 5 2013. this is my third time to apply now months later i rec a letter from south carolina determination services saying they rec my claim for disability benefits from your local social security office. What does this mean and why does South carolina get to determinant my disability? i have a heart condition and blind in right eye and bad knees

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear John,

      The Social Security Administration hires the Disability Determination Services of each state’s Department of Vocational Rehabilitation to perform the medical evaluation of Social Security and Supplemental Security Income disability claims. Be sure to respond to any requests for information that you receive from them.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  • Rita

    How come the DDS cannot give you any additional information in regards to my app. She said a letter was sent out and was very curt in saying so. She cannot tell me anything than other to wait for the letter. So I am assuming I was denied, I guess I am going to have to wait for the letter so I can appeal.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Rita,

      Social Security policy doesn’t allow verbal notification of claim decisions. The fact that she said you have been sent a letter directly from DDS does indicate that your claim has been denied. You do have to wait for the letter to appeal. It is best to get an attorney to help you with your appeal. 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

  • Shelia Stinson

    Hello Kay,

    I applied for SSDI in January. I was sent for a medical examination and a psychological examination. I received a phone call and letter from SS, stating that I had diminished range of motion and I’m now scheduled for X-rated of my shoulders, hips, knees and ankles. My question is this: Is it a good sign or bad sign that they want the x-rays? Does it mean that I would be denied without this? Or they just want to see how my many spine, joint and arthritis conditions are deteriorating?

    Thank you for your information!!!

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Shelia,

      The Disability Determination Services (DDS) examiner is requesting the x-rays to find out how severe your condition is. He or she would not order the x-rays if a decision to approve had already been made. It is important that you follow through with the x-rays.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  • Miss C

    What is next after a mental exam for SSDI?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Miss C.,

      After you have been sent for a consultative examination at Social Security’s request, you wait for the report to be delivered to the Disability Determination Services (DDS) and for the DDS examiner to review the results of the test in the context of the rest of the information in your claim file. If you are denied, you will be sent a letter. If you are medically approved and additional non-medical information is needed, you will either be called or sent a letter about what is needed. Once payment has been calculated, you will receive an award letter.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  • Mindi

    I’m on California disability wich end on 12 months which is 4 months away. I was advised by Ssi to apply early. So I did. My disability is ADHD, anxiety, Bypolar, depression, ocd, & ptsd. I have done the same job for over 15 years and claim is pending medical determination. How long does it take for process to be complete. Anxiety is getting the best of me and not sure if I qualify. Seeing 3 doctors and taking trileptal, welbutrin, cymbalta, Ativan, and Klonopin. Does my claim seen approvable? Not sure what to do next?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Mindi,

      I cannot predict whether or not you will be approved. Most claims are processed in two to ive months, but some take longer. Right now all you can do is wait and respond to any mail or phone requests for information that you might receive.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  • Mary

    Hello Kay, I have a few questions. 1. I applied for SSDI January 3, 2014, I was sent to a physical Exam and a Psychological Exam and have heard nothing back as of yet today 5/6/14 do you have a time frame how long this takes? Also I was on SSDI for several years, then in 2011 they sent me for an evaluation to see if i was still disabled. Miraculously I was cured of My PTSD and Anxiety problems. ( I Need to find this cure so I can bottle it and share it) I did file an appeal never heard anything.. I reapplied after 2 1/2 years of Nothing. However Now, I am told after having an MRI done and several years of lower back pain, I have two bulging disc L4-L5, L5-S1 with Canal Stenosis, Go to Pain management monthly and receive Epidurals and Facet Joint Injections in my spine. With all this medical and Prior issues Will it take longer to decide a case like mine? What is the Time Frame I heard Before they have 120 days to decide a case is this True? Thank You

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Mary,

      Most initial claims take from two to five months to process; however, some pend longer. All of your medical and psychiatric conditions will be considered in determining whether you are eligible, but that will not necessarily delay your claim. If you are denied and believe you are disabled, I recommend hiring an attorney who is very knowledgeable in Social Security law.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  • Dawn

    My husband has throat cancer and they removed his voice box. He has diabetes and sleep apnea also. We applied for disability through the social security office. will he get disability?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Dawn,

      It is quite possible that your husband will be approved for disability.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  • Shawn

    Hi I have avn hips I applied for Disabilty in feb after being off work since may 15 2013 I have to use a walker to get around and I’m in lots Pain seen the state doctor may 3 how do u think before I hear any thing thank u

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Shawn,

      If work backlogs are not too large, I would expect you to get a decision by the end of June, but there is no way to know for sure.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  • Valarie CA

    Hi Kay,
    I’m 49 years old and applied for SSD (i had more then enough work credits) on March 12, 2014 for Nephrotic Syndrome. I have been spilling over 10,000 grams of protein with edema and very low albumin and serum. I was diagnosis on 12/10/13. I had my phone interview on March 17th, 2014, filled out my Activity Daily Living and the Disabilty Examiner has all my doctor reports, lab results, kidney biospy and anything else she needs, the last time I talked to her was on April 23, 2014 which she stated has been sent for medical approval. How long could it take and what is my chances of being APPROVED.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Valerie,

      It sounds as if the disability examiner has sent a recommendation for approval to a Disability Determination Services physician for review and sign off. As you describe your condition and the information from the examiner, I would say that you have a good chance of being approved. It could be a week to a few weeks before the final decision is made, depending on any backlog the physician may have.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

      • Valarie CA

        Thank you Kay for the information. Still waiting but hopefully I will know something soon.

        • Kay Derochie

          You are welcome, Valarie.

  • Bill

    Dear Kay,
    I have been fighting for disability for two years now. I have survived a brain tumor and histiocytosis x. The histiocytosis x can relapse at any moment. I have deteriation in my spine up twords my shoulder blades. I’ve seen a judge and she was “wishy washy” in one spot she said I would get it and then anywhere from one paragraph to one page later she said I wouldn’t get it. Now my case is in Baltimore being seen by three judges to get this straight. How long before I get my benefits? I was on chemotherapy and steroids to get rid of the histiocytosis x. There isn’t a time of day that my back isn’t hurting. I have a lawyer helping me with this and he hasn’t heard a word social security neither have I. Any information you could provide will be greatly appreciated.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Bill,

      You have a highly unusual situation in having received an ambiguous hearing decision letter. I am assuming that some sort of quality review is being conducted to determine what the decision should be. Unfortunately, I cannot offer any estimated time frame for resolution.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  • Mady

    Hello,
    I apply for ss and disability, I just receive a leter stating i was denied, I’m still could qualify or be approved for disability

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Mady,

      If you were denied benefits because it was determined that you were not disabled, to be approved, you would have to appeal the denial explaining why the decision was wrong. If you applied for both Social Security Disability (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and the SSDI denial was for insufficient work credits, then there is still a possibility that you could be approved for SSI.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  • Cindy

    Hello Kay,
    I applied for SSDI back in 2010 and was denied, I did not appeal. I have MS, Inflammatory Disease, Vertigo and have side effects from my numerous meds. I applied again in July 2013 and was denied stating I could do a less demanding job I was an administrative assistant when I stopped working due to cognitive issues. I have since seen a neuro Rehab doctor and neuro psych both who have filled out paper work explaining my issues, I also have low vision and see a neuro ophthalmologist. My neuro physic doctor did a 4 hour test that shows my deficits and in her letter stated all the reasons why I will not be able to return to the work force. My Neuro rehab doctor stated my cognitive issues go back to April of 2013. I have hired an attorney whom I told back in February that I wanted to not only appeal SS decision but wanted to have an on the record appeal done, they are only now requesting it. My question is what do you think my chances are for an OTR or should I just wait for the hearing in December. My MRI shows many new lesions also so we are looking at switching from Rebif to another medication.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Cindy,

      It is really hard to predict whether the request for an on-the-record decision will result in that being done. Even if your claim can be approved without a hearing, the judge may review your claim only shortly before the hearing. Assignment to judges and actual hearing dates are made not long before the hearing date and the judge may not look at the request for the OTR decision immediately upon its coming in. On the plus side, it sounds as if you have done a very good job of gathering evidence and statements to support you claim.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

      • Que

        Im 22 years old was shot 8 times may 27th 2014 .I still have a bullet In my pelvis area .I had knee and thigh surgery to remove the bullets.It hard for me to bend knell walk sit and squat.I just applyed today wats the chances ill get approved?

        • Kay Derochie

          Dear Que,

          It is possible that you will be found disabled if you are significantly limited in both sitting and standing.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

        • Hey que keep your head up they better approve your claim I started my claim process 5 months ago. If need some pointers hit me back and take care of yourself peace cwebb.

  • Juanita

    Dear Kay, I filed for disability in sept 2013. I have cervical spinal stenosis. I had 3 bulging discs c4-c6, bone spurs & a pinched nerve. I had spinal decompression & fusion in May 2012. I also have migraine associated vertigo since April 2011. I also have chronic migraines & doctor believes that I may have osteoarthritis in my knees. I am 40 & have walked with a cane since my vertigo began. I recently had X-rays of my neck that shows retrolisthesis of c3 on 4. I have limited motion in my neck, muscle spasms in both shoulders & shoulder blades. I cannot sit up in a chair unless it supports my neck & head. If I do so, I’m in severe pain! I’m in a lot of pain & I am waiting to get Medicaid so, that I can see the neurosurgeon again. I’m not sure at this time if I have additional problems with my neck. I have a disability attorney working my case. I lost my job in August 2013. They switched contractors where I was working & I don’t believe they hired me due to my impairment. What do you think my chances are of being approved? I am currently on a lot of pain meds for each illness. I also have depression. I am still in the first stage of my disability case.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Juanita,

      You made a good decision to have an attorney help with your initial claim because you have several conditions contributing to your limitations and that can make it hard for the claims examiner to see the whole picture. Hopefully, your attorney will tie everything together. I cannot say what your changes are for being approved, but there are many cases of people who have been struggling physically to work losing their jobs due to layoffs and getting approved.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  • gma

    My grandson’s dad was in an auto accident in January 2014. He lost his left arm and had head injuries. He has problems with his vision and still gets headaches and has a lot of pain. What are his chances of being approved for SSDI in Florida? (He had been doing construction work and he is 25). My daughter, needless to say, has not received child support since his accident. Thank you!

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Grandma,

      I would say that your grandson’s father could be approved for Social Security Disability. At his young age, he is likely to receive rehabilitative services, so the benefits may be permanent. If he is approved and his family maximum benefit is more than his primary benefit, your grandson will be eligible for dependent benefits. It is important that your grandson was listed on his dad’s application. If your daughter has his Social Security number, she can contact Social Security to make sure that they have the child listed.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

    • I appled for disablitliy on august 31st.Due to my type 2 diabetes ,HBP and my depression. I received a letter stating that my case is being reviewed.at the detemnaton claim office . Im 37 yrs old and i have cut back alot from my fulltime job. That im having lots of pain to hang on too.How much longer will it take from them to reach a decision?

      • Kay Derochie

        Dear Grace,

        Average processing times for initial claims run two to five months. I suggest that you let your doctors know that they may be contacted and ask them to respond as quickly as they can. Also, be sure that Social Security knows you are working. If you are earning more than $1,070 gross, typically you would not be considered disabled.

        Sincerely,
        Kay

  • Bella

    Dear Kay,

    My Fiance’ applied for SSD back in 2010 – he was denied the first time, we then appealed the decision and it was remanded back to the same judge who denied him in the first place (this ALJ has an approval rating of 32%!). We recently appealed again and requested Dire Need status – we found out yesterday that his case has been approved for the dire need status – do you know how long it might take, now that it’s been approved for dire need, to actually process through? His medical evidence is stronger this time than it’s ever been and we’ve requested an OTR decision.

    Any advice would be appreciated!

    Thank you!

    Bella

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Bella,

      It sounds as if you have done all that you can do for the present time. The judge may or may not rule on the record as you requested. If he doesn’t there will be another hearing. I do not know how long you will have to wait now that your fiance’s claim has qualified as a dire need case; however, his claim will be bumped up in line.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  • Ashley

    Kay, my husband got hurt at work sept 22 2011 he was on work comp until everyone settled in 2012. He was diagnosed with RSD/CRPS. Since then his condition has got worse. He tried on his own to get ssi and of course he got denied but this is the 2nd time and he has a lawyer his doctor also sent them a letter stating how severe his condition is and how he can’t work because he can’t stand or sit for long and because of his condition and his medications he would miss a lot of work. We got a phone call from the lawyer 3 weeks ago saying fairfax va had just assigned his case to someone and have not heard anything since. What do u think is the likelihood of him getting approved?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Ashley,

      If his condition is as limiting as his doctor says that he is and the limitations asserted are supported by testing and/or clinical findings and everything is clearly presented, then his claim may be approved; however, I cannot predict for sure what the outcome will be.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  • Kay Derochie

    Dear Kristee,

    I imagine that the first representative you spoke to intended to send your claim to the Disability Determination Services (DDS) when she said but things got busy and it didn’t get done. DDS can take from a few weeks to a few months to arrive at a decision regarding whether you are disabled according to Social Security law. If you are medically approved it can take another few weeks for payment to start. I suggest that you check to see if your state or county offers temporary assistance to disabled persons who have applied for federal disability benefits.

    Your postings have been removed as you requested to guard your anonymity.

    Sincerely,

    Kay

  • angela

    Hi I applied for ssi on dec 10, 2013 for my son who was born with hearing loss. They told me that it would take 3 to 4 months. 4 months will be april 9. Would u assume I would have a decision soon or is this something that could take longer
    thanks

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Angela,

      Most claims are processed between two and five months, but some take longer.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  • i have stage 4 kidney diease does anyone know the chanceses of me getting disabilty

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Alice,

      If you have stopped working or are earning less than $1,070 gross wages monthly, I suggest that you file an application to get a formal decision. Should you continue working at a level too high to receive disability benefits; but you go on kidney dialysis, you can file for Medicare to cover dialysis and continue working.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  • Holly

    I just applied for social security disability yesterday. I have Huntington Chorea it is a hereditary disease that runs in my family. My Mom has been in a nursing home because she is suffering also from this disease. This disease is a neurological disorder that will deteriorate me, I will become a vegetable an die from this disease. Is there a possible I will be approved for disability?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Holly,

      Whether or not you are approved will depend on how severely limited you are now. If you are disabled now, you will be approved.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  • talbet

    Hi.

    I have done data entry for 25 years or so. Am 53 years old. I’ve had multiple carpal tunnel surgeries and, after the last one I had, the doctor told me I could never do that type of work again. I won a workers comp case against the place I worked. Also have filed for ssi/disability. It’s been almost 10 months since I filed. I called and got the determination lady’s voice mail twice and asked if there was anything I could do to help with the case, like call doctors for any medical records she’s having trouble getting ahold of, etc, but never got a call back. How would a workers comp case win affect any payments I might get? And, do you have any suggestions as to what I should do other than just wait? Do you have any idea what my chances are of winning based on the info I gave?

    Thanks! You’re doing such a valuable service with this website.

    Talbet

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Talbet,

      Your claim has been pending for a long time as an initial claim that has not been appealed. I suggest calling the Disability Determination Services (DDS) at their central number and ask to speak to the examiner’s supervisor. (Nicely)explain that you new claim has been pending ten months, you have left x number of calls to see if you need to do anything to get whatever DDS needs to make a decision but have never gotten a call back. Ask whether the supervisor could check on the claim and let you know whether they are waiting on anything from outside the agency that you can follow up on.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  • Nycole

    I filed for disabity in Janurary 2013 I was denied now I had to get a lawyer for help. I have Graves’ disease, Thyroid problems Arthritis. I have lower back pain, Shoulder arm pain, my knees and ankles sweal. How much longer will I haft to wait I can know longer work anymore.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Nycole,

      How long you may have to wait depends on where you are in a appeals process. If you have filed a hearing, it can take a year or more to get a hearing date, sixty days or more to get a decision after the hearing, and another sixty days or more to receive payment after a favorable decision letter has been received.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  • Jarrod

    Dear Kay,
    This info is tremendously helpful. I am assisting my sister who was just diagnosed with non-alcoholic cirrhosis of the liver and is likely due to a genetic or hereditary condition. She is being placed on a liver transplant list and for the foreseeable future cannot return to work as she could have a hemorrhage.

    We are just beginning the SSDI process. Is there any advice you have in order to get this application moving quickly — and might you estimate how long it would take to begin receiving benefits? I would think that her doctors have plenty of documentation of her medical condition. She’s very poor and definitely needs this income!

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Jarrod,

      To possibly speed things up, I suggest that she attach the following to the application if it is available: any test results that show the severity of her liver disease and/or a chart printout or letter from her specialist that gives the diagnosis, the fact that she’s on a transplant waiting list, and that the cirrhosis is non-alcoholic (very important because benefits are not paid for drug and alcohol addiction). List all medical providers with complete contact information. Provide information about her daily activities especially if she is very limited. Lastly, provide a good description of past work performed including duties.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  • gena caudillo

    Hi there I’ve suffered from depression fir 8 years we where affected by the flood on 9/13 /13 I’ve had so much jobs because I can’t keep one cause even throw I’m taking meds I feel tired week and lose interest in everything do u think I have a case? Thanks gena

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Gena,

      The only way to know whether you qualify for disability benefits is to apply. The articles under the”Apply for SSD” tab of the Disability Advisor website (www.disabilityadvisor.com) provide information on how to apply. If you are denied and believe you are disabled, I suggest hiring a Social Security attorney.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  • lou ann patterson

    My stroke was in september an a second one in january. I have seen the state dr in january 2014. It effective my eye sight an my hearing along with my left arm an hand. Have sumitted all dr reports . But have been delayed 30 days for new eye examine. Will they delay again.

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Lou,

      To be eligible for Social Security Disability (SDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI), you have to be expected to be disabled for at least twelve months. People who have strokes sometimes improve enough to return to work before the end of twelve months. For that reason, sometimes decisions on claims of disability due to stroke are deferred until closer to the end of the twelve-month period. Depending on the findings in the eye exam and the other medical information available, they may make a decision or they defer your claim further to see how you progress.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  • Donna

    Dear Kay,

    I have had my evaluation from the state Dr. He informed me that he was submitting for my approval. I had a stroke last Feb. 25th. I filed for disability in June. I didn’t see their Dr. until November, and the estimated date for a decision was 2/10. I call often and was told as early as December that all info had been turned in and the decision was pending. I now call daily, if I can remember and I get the same info “we have received all of your information, but no decision has been made”. I have limited mobility on my right side, and still have “episodes” to where I am shaky and unbalanced and incoherent at times. Any suggestion as to my delay?

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Donna,

      It is likely that the Disability Determination Services claims examiner and/or reviewing physician simply has not gotten to your claim after the consulting physician’s report was received. The delay is most likely due to workload backlogs. You could perhaps save some wear and tear on yourself by reducing your follow-ups to once a week.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  • Kaitlin

    Hi! I have applied for SS. I’m 31 years old and was diagnosed with Multiple sclerosis in June of 2013. I’ve had multiple hospital stays and depression is getting worse. I have a hard time walking and standing for too long. Was just wondering if you think I’ll be approved or not? I’m worried since I’m young, they won’t approve me. Thanks!

    • Kay Derochie

      Dear Kaitlin,

      If your symptoms are severe enough to keep you from working, you will be approved regardless of your age. If you are denied, be sure to get legal assistance with your appeal. 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

      • Kaitlin

        Thank you so much!

        • Kay Derochie

          You are welcome, Kaitlin.

  • Holly

    Dear Kay,
    Dec 2012 I noticed it hurt to walk. By the end of March I had to quit my waitress job due to pain. April I had an MRI after having seen acupuncturist, chiropractors, leg and foot doctor and massage therapist. I applied for disability July 2013 after my doc told me the spinal stenosis would not go away and that the 2 bulging disc (one with an anular tear) would take 12 to 18 months to heal. I am never going to be able to wait tables again as it hurts too bad to walk. I turned 50 in June 2013. Evidently my case went before the DDS in Aug. Also in Aug I moved primary residence from WI to FL. I have not had money for a doc, nor for acupuncture or chiropractor. Recently I went to pain clinic and put it on a credit card. That doc recommended two MRI’s and EMG. I will have to put that on credit card as well. Is there any way to get the