View Full Version : Question regarding disability & SSI
12-07-2012, 06:18 PM
First off: back in June I finally caved in and applied for disability. My doctors had recommended I apply for over a year-but I guess I'm too stubborn/proud to admit when things are too much for me. Anyways-so I applied in June and received a denial letter in September stating that I did not sign the release to collect medical records (which I did) and in the comment section I wrote I had questions pertaining to an address change soon to come. Before my denial I'd also tried contacting my local office-leaving about a dozen messages to no avail. The day I received the denial I again called my local office countless times in the same day-I was able to leave one voice message on my third to last call-because the person's mailbox was full. Frustrated I called the main number also on the denial letter & after an hr on hold was finally connected to a gentlemen who didn't understand my denial. He told me to appeal it vs reapplying because-reapplication increases your chances of a second denial and if I appealed they would have to back pay from my original application date. He told me to fill out for my original address on the application and when I'm approved I fill out this certain form to then change my address. He sent me the appeal papers & told me I needed to turn them in by October 17th (about 2 weeks).
So I filled out the paperwork-adding the new conditions it asked for. I again denied I wanted to apply for early social security & that I was only applying for disability. Two days after contacting the head office-my local office contacted me. The woman was extremely snippy with me-borderline yelling saying I had "ample opportunity to appeal" and that she was the one who personally found me "under qualified to deserve disability". Her anger got worse after I informed her I'd already spoken to the main office for disability and he was sending me appeal papers, and the date I was to submit them by. Her response to that was "well we will see how that plays out" and that was the end of our discussion.
After speaking to her, I dreaded going down to their office to submit the paper work, but I did. The head desk was really pleasant and I asked all the same questions I'd asked the main office gentleman & explained what he'd said. He agreed it should be no problem & confirmed I needed my original address on the first application.
So I waited. And waited. Then last week I received a letter denying SSI income stating I didn't apply. At first I assumed this was the early social security-because my other letter clearly stated disability. And after looking online it explained the difference. The letter declared I had until December 16 to appeal this decision.
So my question is: is this denial for social security or disability?
This whole process has made me so nervous, I'm not sure if I should contact the main office again or not-because on their site it says not to contact unless its been over 2-3 months from your appeal. But I'm afraid to miss my appeal timeline. If this is for disability I know I should seek out a legal representative, I'm just not sure how that works & if I should start looking into that now. Since I didn't resume work In August, it's been a struggle on only one paycheck, which only adds to all this confusion & chaos.
Thank you for any help anyone can provide
I know it is confusing but disability is early social security. It is called Social Security Disability. That is for people that have worked up until filing (or close to it) and there is SSI which is Social Secuirity Insurance.
Although some people get it on their own very few get it without attorneys because the system is set up so that 70% of people are denied until the 3rd appeal when it goes in front of a judge. Even the. All of your t's must be crossed and your I'd dotted or they will find a way out. The best thing to do is hire. sS attorney.
You don't pay them up front. They only get paid when/if you when and their fee is a %of your back payment. They know how the game is played and they know exactly what SS is looking for and which papers have to be there by what time. For example... You only have 60 days to file an appeal or you have to start over. It also reduces the stress on you because you don't have to deal with those rude people (and they are rude)
anyway... To answer your question. You can't get disability without SS. It is one and the same thing. The two types just depend on how much you have worked and in you have actually earned your SS yet or not. Taking it doesn't mean you won't get it when you are over the retirement age though. It doesn't mean you will run out early
12-08-2012, 03:52 AM
Thank you. I understood disability comes from SS, but on their application SSI is social security income-which is grouped into two separate divisions: Early SS-which is collecting your standard SS early. But to qualify to do so you can only have so much allotted in "collateral" or "assets" ie CDs, bonds, properties, land, cemetery plots etc. totally under $1500. (Which is another reason I didn't bother applying). Then there's Disability SSI which is taken from social security (and doesn't garnish your designated amount from SS once you become old enough to collect it). That's where I'm left dumbfounded.
My sister went through a similar situation (has many debilitating health problems) she was denied the first time after a consult with on of their doctors. She appealed with a lawyer and he had her pcp be the consulting physician since he was intimately familiar with her case, which yielded her being approved. I don't know the intercut workings of it-since I hadn't accompanied her-but I get the general idea.
Again hers also was the SSI division for disability and her denial read the same as my first, not my second. So I'm definitely questioning which is which!
12-08-2012, 03:57 AM
I forgot to include that I have worked since the age of 15 until this last August (about 10yrs) so I wouldn't think that would be a reason (my sister had only worked 4 to compare to). I dont know, I wish it was a more simplified process! Lol
SSI is basically used for people who have not worked, or who have not been able to work enough of the quarters counted to draw on the SSD. It is not something you can pick and choose between. You are eligible for one or the other.
i spent most of my days working with attorneys and I just knew I could do my SS alone. They make it almost impossible unless you fit in one of their approved diseases. ) even having one of the "automatic approval" diseases I was denied until I got an attorney to explain what I had to do to prove some things to them ( who knew I had to go to the ER every time I had a seizure just to have blood drawn showing that I was taking my meds).
I am simply giving you the same advice I give everyone. Since it doesn't cost unless you win... Get an attorney.
Hey! That's right! You have seizures. Seizures is one of the automatic disability acceptance reasons IF all the paperwork is done right. Seriously get an attorney to apply for your SSi (NOT Binder &Binder). The SS people see their job as saying no. You have one of their approved reasons so don't give them an excuse to ( they make me so mad!)
12-11-2012, 03:42 AM
I'm sorry if that came off as pretentious, that wasn't at all what I was going for! That's what makes this so crazy-everything I've been told or read all contradicts & jumbles the entire chaotic mess. The man I talked to had also informed me of the two types, but said I didn't have to apply for the SSI-the one to collect early SS and about the limitations. My orginal application I did online and when it gave the two options it had a link that redirected me to a page informing what it was. So I'm not sure how that works?
And I didn't know there were conditions for automatic approval nor that seizures was one of them. A handy bit of information! Majority of the conditions I listed weren't lupus related-ie degenerative disk disease, multi-partial vertebrae removal, multi disc removal & spinal fusion, shattered knee, elbow replacement, ulna shortening & multi-partial carpal (think that's the term) removal etc. more of literal physical limitations that won't improve with medicines. Although I also listed things such as my ckd, renal failure, almost complete deafness, etc.
I guess the most frustrating aspect is some folks I know have it for mild copd and nothing more (not down playing that affliction at all) & were approved the first go round.
Thank you for the encouragement! I definitely think now, an attorney is my best chance.
12-11-2012, 03:51 AM
And that's ridiculous having to go to the er every incident to prove your legitimacy. That would become expensive in a hurry...which makes complete sense (sarcasm) because if you had the money to spare, you wouldn't be trying to collect!
All I can say is get a lawyer if your going for disability, they made it so much easier for me and you don't pay anything until you win the case. You should look into it.
Automatic approval is really not the right word but seizures are one thing that, if you can prove you have them (more then the amount they say are acceptable to work) there is no fight over approval. I still needed an Attorney and I had to throw my hands up not worry about my credit (which ended up happening anyway because I didn't get disability insurance or my Medicare 2 1/2 years until AFTER disability was approved).
What I am going to say is wron on so many levels but it is simply how it is... You can't worry about the money. If you have a seizure you go to the ER for a blood draw to prove you are taking meds. You have no choice. It has to be right after. If you can't pay you can't pay. It is that you you won't be able to get the SS that you need
12-11-2012, 12:34 PM
So I just got off the phone with SS main office again-I was too afraid to ignore the letter. My denial letter was just for SSI and my disability claim is pending with the board-has been since the 23rd of October. The guy I talked to today was very helpful. He said it isn't actually an appeal like the other guy said. I submitted the release they needed and once they received that the process could progress. That an appeal is based on being denied by determination of not being physically disabled-a denial by lack of paper work, is not a sealed denial. The other man I'd originally spoken to hadn't put anything in about the address change-he told me that alone was worth me making the phone call because its a huge factor in getting approved. He said they have until Feb 20, 2013 to make a decision & that between now & then I should receive a determination. If I do not, then I need to contact them again promptly. He also said that the longer they take means they're extensively collecting my records and ups my chance of acceptance. So I guess for now, I wait some more:-/
And it is crazy to have to do those things-sad to have admit it, but I understand its necessity for us in this system. For me, I'm sadly a ER frequent flier so they can dig as much as they want! Lol there's more incidents than they could shake a stick at lol
12-11-2012, 12:38 PM
And I'm sorry you had to go through such a drawn out process, it isn't fair. I've given up on my credit score long ago lol medical bills have a habit of ruining it for even the most cautious pocket watcher.
01-02-2013, 01:43 PM
It is best to get a lawyer. You can not trust what these people say on the phone. The process of denying sick people twice is criminal. Making everyone go to court to get approved is a flaw in our social security system. Having had the obtuse woman with a bad attitude on my calls, as well, I have invested in a little phone recorder. When I call the social security office I tell the person answering the phone and anyone they transfer me to that the call is being recorded. The woman with poor character and manners either does not answer my calls anymore or she speaks in a more friendly manner. Although, I have been hung up on as well so maybe that was her.