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Anyone in the group ever applied for SS Disability ?
Posted by: cbelt3
Date: May 13, 2015 02:10PM
mrs. cbelt3 is quite disabled with her RA / Fibromyalgia (looking at the FM diagnosis now based on symptoms). $$ is tight. She's earned SS benefits after working full time before our children arrived, and then full time plus for 7 years after the kids (and I) were old enough to fend for themselves. She will turn 55 this year, and has been not able to work for the last 2 years.

Does anyone here who has gone through that have suggestions ?
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Re: Anyone in the group ever applied for SS Disability ?
Posted by: p8712
Date: May 13, 2015 02:17PM
She will be turned down several times before getting it, no matter what.
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Re: Anyone in the group ever applied for SS Disability ?
Posted by: pinion
Date: May 13, 2015 02:20PM
Quote
p8712
She will be turned down several times before getting it, no matter what.

So be persistent! Keep records of everything and always follow up.



---“What you permit, you promote. What you allow, you encourage. What you condone, you own.”
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Re: Anyone in the group ever applied for SS Disability ?
Posted by: davester
Date: May 13, 2015 02:37PM
Educate yourself regarding all of the requirements to determine whether she's eligible and what documentation you need. Also note that there is a big difference between SSI and SSDI. I'm guessing that if she's eligible for anything it would be SSDI. I agree with the expectation that you may be turned down initially even if she qualifies. Our son, who is obviously disabled with tons of documentation was turned down for SSI, which was shocking to us. We had to file an appeal. The lawyer who helped us with this told us that it's pretty routine for them to reject almost all applicants at first, though this may be a local office characteristic only.



"In science it often happens that scientists say, 'You know that's a really good argument; my position is mistaken,' and then they would actually change their minds and you never hear that old view from them again. They really do it. It doesn't happen as often as it should, because scientists are human and change is sometimes painful. But it happens every day. I cannot recall the last time something like that happened in politics or religion." (1987) -- Carl Sagan
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Re: Anyone in the group ever applied for SS Disability ?
Posted by: Buzz
Date: May 13, 2015 03:01PM
Quote
pinion
Quote
p8712
She will be turned down several times before getting it, no matter what.

So be persistent! Keep records of everything and always follow up.

They don't make it easy. Good luck. Buy lotto tickets and enter PCH sweepstakes in the mean time... your/her odds will be better.
==
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Re: Anyone in the group ever applied for SS Disability ?
Posted by: decay
Date: May 13, 2015 03:09PM
Does the medical community at large even officially recognize FM?

Many try to say it's psychological and/or psychsomatic.

My wife might have this also. We're not on good benefits yet so a diagnosis will have to wait. She's in a lot of pain every day. Not even 50.



---
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Re: Anyone in the group ever applied for SS Disability ?
Posted by: cbelt3
Date: May 13, 2015 03:50PM
Quote
decay
Does the medical community at large even officially recognize FM?

Many try to say it's psychological and/or psychsomatic.

My wife might have this also. We're not on good benefits yet so a diagnosis will have to wait. She's in a lot of pain every day. Not even 50.

Diagnosis is getting better. One of the 'it's in the mind' complexities are that certain anti-depression medications have a secondary use as treatment for the condition. Sort of.

[www.fibrocenter.com]

There's a whole host of auto immune disorders that were regarded as BS even 20-10 years ago, and now better research (and scans, tools, etc.) are helping with that understanding.

Heck, back a hundred years ago women with depression just needed a good orgasm, as far as the AMA was concerned.
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Re: Anyone in the group ever applied for SS Disability ?
Posted by: GuyGene
Date: May 13, 2015 03:52PM
Fibromyalgia!!! Yes, The Mess (as I call it) is real!! I've had it for over 40 years, just diagnosed about 4 years ago. I am convinced that many people who had it way back, even fairly recently, were thought to have been crazy. It's all it ye haid, type of diagnosis. I've researched it a lot, about 80% of people with it are women. Unless most of the men with it just don't recognize that there is something really wrong! That's the way I was, well, I knew something was WRONG, just never heard of fibromyalgia until a friend's wife had it about 20 years ago. You must just learn to somehow cope with it. It doesn't go away. Unless I had work like I do that is very easy, I couldn't have worked a "real" job for many years. I wouldn't even hire myself!

As for SS disability, I know people who just gave up and got a lawyer who specializes in it to help. They can only be paid 25% of any backpay you are owed by law. Just the backpay part. I say get a good lawyer. I don't see how a person can fake a disabling illness. The gubmint shouldn't make it so one needs a lawyer. I've been paying into SS since I was 12 years old when I got my first paper routes! Just starting my SS in February at 66! Still not retired, but didn't think it was good for me to wait any longer.

cbelt3, here's hoping ye wife gets help!



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Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 05/13/2015 03:54PM by GuyGene.
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Re: Anyone in the group ever applied for SS Disability ?
Posted by: Black
Date: May 13, 2015 03:59PM
Quote
GuyGene
I don't see how a person can fake a disabling illness.
Most people who try aren't very good at it, but as far as I can tell the whole process for who is approved and who is denied is mostly random, except for the "denied first two application" part which seems to be the way things work here too.




New forum user map 8/2015: [www.zeemaps.com]
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Re: Anyone in the group ever applied for SS Disability ?
Posted by: Speedy
Date: May 13, 2015 04:28PM
My daughter was never denied but the process took at least six months. We had all the required documentation when we began the process. It is important to apply before the end of the month because SS pays based on the month you apply, not the day, so don't wait to apply until June 1.

SS determines eligibility based on their 'blue book'. Search for SSI and bluebook. If your wife fits a category, she will get the benefit. My daughter qualified in four categories. Most people will have a hard time meeting the requirements in one category because they are fairly stringent, i.e., a person has to have a very significant disability. For example, an IQ of 71 means you don't qualify under the developmental disability requirement. An IQ of 70 means you do. My daughter has an IQ of 62 and repeatedly tested at that level for 15 years prior to our application when she turned 18 yet it still took six months (or more) to get approved. Lots of reports needed to be filed by her school and her doctor as well as having an interview with a SS psychologist. The final decision is made by the State Medical Review Team. Do a search for that if you wish.

But if your wife doesn't qualify based on your reading of the bluebook, then she is quite unlikely to get the benefit. Still, it is well worth the effort. Note that there is a possibility she will not explicitly fit one category but there is a possibility of having a constellation of disabilities, none of which individually meet the criteria, but in total may qualify her.

As an aside, SS denies because there is allegedly (sometimes by politicians) so much fraud. But one you read the bluebook you will see how difficult it is to meet the qualifications in a criteria.

Good luck.

ps., be sure to use the adult bluebook, not the children's. Also, my daughter qualified for SS disability (not SSI) based on my work history. Your wife may possibly qualify under your work history if that means a higher benefit. Ask about this when she applies. Also, if she qualifies then she will also qualify for Medicare so you will need to coordinate insurance benefits with your current health insurance behemoth.



Saint Cloud, Minnesota, where the weather is wonderful even when it isn't.



Edited 3 time(s). Last edit at 05/13/2015 04:49PM by Speedy.
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Re: Anyone in the group ever applied for SS Disability ?
Posted by: MarkD
Date: May 13, 2015 06:02PM
Lots of good info above. Had several friends apply and knew several lawyers I have referred folks to that specialized in disability. The advice I got from them was file and call 'em when denied. Always great to check around and find someone who does disability work who can give some simple, straightforward advice. What is not said is that certain areas of the country have tendencies for granting/denying disability. Lots of info on web disability secrets.com looked pretty good (by Nolo). I am sure there are some good texts that are helpful and some DIY books. Good luck!
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Re: Anyone in the group ever applied for SS Disability ?
Posted by: Dennis S
Date: May 13, 2015 06:08PM
Take advantage of a few free 15-minute lawyer consultations.
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Re: Anyone in the group ever applied for SS Disability ?
Posted by: lost in space
Date: May 13, 2015 08:29PM
A fibromyalgia forum or support group might be a good resource. A foundation for the bone disorder I have has great resources, plus it was started by a guy who has the disorder and is also a lawyer specializing in disability law. He's been a huge help for some people. Maybe there's someone like that with FM?

Best luck.



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Re: Anyone in the group ever applied for SS Disability ?
Posted by: michaelb
Date: May 13, 2015 08:34PM
Speedy is only describing what amounts to the first half of the process, step 3 in a five stage process. The disability criteria is significantly easier to meet at age 55, and then even more so at age 60. Under what lawyers call the "grid". that looks at her vocational abilities and history. Have her apply for disability now to get the process started, and if she is denied on application, it is worth hiring a lawyer that does SS disability work. Disability cases for those age 55 and up are pretty straightforward. The fee for the lawyer is paid out of the retroactive award if they (and here, when), they win.

Good luck.
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Re: Anyone in the group ever applied for SS Disability ?
Posted by: Speedy
Date: May 13, 2015 08:38PM
Thanks. My experience is limited to much younger people.

Quote
michaelb
Speedy is only describing what amounts to the first half of the process, step 3 in a five stage process. The disability criteria is significantly easier to meet at age 55, and then even more so at age 60. Under what lawyers call the "grid". that looks at her vocational abilities and history. Have her apply for disability now to get the process started, and if she is denied on application, it is worth hiring a lawyer that does SS disability work. Disability cases for those age 55 and up are pretty straightforward. The fee for the lawyer is paid out of the retroactive award if they (and here, when), they win.

Good luck.



Saint Cloud, Minnesota, where the weather is wonderful even when it isn't.
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Re: Anyone in the group ever applied for SS Disability ?
Posted by: wave rider
Date: May 14, 2015 12:08AM
Best of luck to Mrs. cbelt3 for persisting through the paperwork and bureaucracy.

I lived with a girlfriend who had one leg amputated and the other severely injured in her younger days. SS would have her go in every few years for an exam, as I put it, to see if her leg had grown back... confused smiley RollingEyesSmiley5

=wr=
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Re: Anyone in the group ever applied for SS Disability ?
Posted by: Tiki2000
Date: May 14, 2015 06:54AM
The situation you discribe for Mrs. cbelt3 sounds similiar to my mother's case from 10 years ago. I wasn't party to the whole goings on, but I believe my mother applied based on the RA diagonois & was approved without getting a lawyer involved. I think the quality of the application depends greatly on the quality of the medical background that goes with the application.

Best Wishes
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Re: Anyone in the group ever applied for SS Disability ?
Posted by: max
Date: May 14, 2015 04:23PM
Quote
Tiki2000
The situation you discribe for Mrs. cbelt3 sounds similiar to my mother's case from 10 years ago. I wasn't party to the whole goings on, but I believe my mother applied based on the RA diagonois & was approved without getting a lawyer involved. I think the quality of the application depends greatly on the quality of the medical background that goes with the application.

Best Wishes
The primary need for a lawyer is not for getting SS benefits, but for their legal impact unto the family, it can be quite significant....
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Re: Anyone in the group ever applied for SS Disability ?
Posted by: PeterW
Date: May 15, 2015 11:54AM
Nonsense. Without a lawyer (and one who is quite well versed in the art of appealing SS benefit denial), you will never see dollar one.
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