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Old 04-22-2006, 07:28 PM   #1
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lestoby HB User
To Kymtnms - SSI Appeal Hearing

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kymtnms
Lestoby

I am in the 3rd stage of disability, requested a hearing with the judge. If I have an attorney representing me with the CD be sent to the attorney or will SS send it to me? My attorney isn't the best at communication so they might already have the CD and I would never know it. I still haven't talked to the actual attorney but only to his his assistant who doesn't like to take messages nor return calls. After being in that office 3 or 4 times I can understand why, their phone never stops ringing.

Some of my doctors wouldn't send records, SS gave me a list on my first denial letter of which ones that refused to respond to their request, it came with the first denial letter. After looking over the list I didn't feel like those doctors input would have made any difference so I didn't push for copies from them but I do want to see what the ones who did send reports said. Somebody is putting down things that make my health sound like it's pretty good and my only problem is slight depression and anxiety from the way the denial letters read.

Hope all the test results from the lumbar puncture get back before the hearing with the judge. Probably shouldn't be worried about that because there is no telling how long it will be before the hearing is scheduled.

Lynne

 
Old 04-22-2006, 07:29 PM   #2
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Re: To Kymtnms - SSI Appeal Hearing

Hi Lynne,

Thought we should start our own posting here……

First off, we did not have an attorney. No attorney would take us on as a client as we are somewhat “self-employed”, but in reality, our 2nd income is considered “Real Estate Investments”, of which my husband does marginal light handyman work. So, we had to represent ourselves. I say “we” because I did all of the paperwork, since my husband is “paper phobic” and hates anything to do with forms. He would have given up after the first denial.

So, we got word of a “Hearing” around the first of February 2006 via an answering machine message. Unfortunately, I was under the assumption it had something to do with his Work Comp case and not his SSI, so I kind of ignored it thinking it we would get a letter in the mail from his work comp attorney.

Less than one week before this Hearing, which was scheduled for the first week of March, 2006, I received a letter in the mail (on a Saturday) stating that his SSI Appeal Hearing was scheduled for the following Thursday. OMG! I freaked out because I was not prepared. SSI called on the following Monday and said that they would be providing an “Electronic Hearing”. What they mean by electronic hearing is: Paper Reduction Act – everything (all documents received to date) have been scanned in and placed on a CD. The judge will have a copy and we would have a copy. SSI mailed the CD and I received the CD 1-2 days prior to the Hearing. I then reviewed ALL of the documents on the CD (which, by the way was not too user-friendly in telling you how to scroll multiple pages) and determined that I needed an updated work restrictions from his Orthopedic. I called the Orthopedic, explained to them that SSI expects my husband to stand 6 hrs a day or sit for 6 hours a day and has complete use of his hands. Doctor agreed that this was impossible given his medical history and condition. The Doctor then wrote out a new work limitations/restrictions on an Rx and allowed us to pick it up that day (very helpful)!

I then compared the documents on the CD with all of the documentation that we had and found a few diagnostic testing results that were not found on the CD. We then brought the new Rx and missing documents to the Hearing.

End result…… My husband filed for SSI when he was 49 and it took 1 full year to come to the point of an Appeal Hearing with a Judge. We very honest and truthful about my husbands pain, lifestyle, work history, and current income situation. During the Hearing, there will be a Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor present who will listen to the Hearing in its entirety and he will determine if there are any other jobs out there that you would be capable of doing. This Voc Rehab Counselor determined that when my husband turned 50 in August, he was determined to be “approaching advanced age” and was unable to be voc rehabbed as doing anything. However, if here were still age 49, then he was suggesting that my husband could do the work of monitoring security cameras, as this would not require much physical or mental abilities (his words… not mine).

After the Hearing, the Judge tells you that he needs 30-60 days to make a decision. We received his decision in the mail in about 20 days. He determined that my husband would receive a “partially-favorable” determination. In essence, rather then make his disability effective the date that he initially filed one year prior, he would make his disability effective the date he turned 50.

Now helpful suggestions for you (mind you…. I am not an attorney, this only based on our case history):

1. Call the SSI office and find out the status of your case. If a Hearing has not been scheduled yet, they may tell you that it could take 3-7 months to get a Hearing scheduled. If this is where you are, then maybe you can discharge your attorney, as I believe they are not allowed to speak at your Hearing anyway. This would save you from having to pay them 25% of anything you may be awarded.

2. SSI pays special importance to anything regarding “neurological” disorders. If you have any diagnostic tests that prove neurological disorders, this would be most helpful.

3. If your neurologist will not give you a written “work limitations/restrictions” note, then maybe your General Practitioner can help. Especially, if your GP is your main focal point for coordinating all of your referrals to specialists.

4. Have all documentation regarding any medication you are taking and side-effects that may be attributable to your restrictions.

5. Be prepared to answer questions about your pain and how it limits your current work and lifestyle.

I wish you luck, as I know this is a long road to haul. If it were not for our “investments”, my husband and I would be homeless if we had to depend on state assistance or paycheck to paycheck. We were fortunate that when my husband became disabled (due to work related injury), we had enough to get started in the growth of our investments and I was working a full-time job as well as running the paper-work end of this business. I was laid off about 4 years ago and started running our investments full time and our growth was enough to support us until I became very ill in August (probable MS). We sold off a lot of our assets since August in order to reduce stress and consolidate our assets to those that are pretty much self-managing. My husband was also receiving Workers Compensation (small sums) up until November. However, our personal insurance policies have sky-rocketed in costs (almost $900 a month for a family of 4) for primarily catastrophic care (nobody will insure my husband until he settles his work comp case) from the State for my husband and a $2500 deductible each for me and my girls. Ouch!

It is my belief that God has taken care of us all along and led us down this path of making the decisions at the time that we did to where we were never in dire straits. It took a lot of planning and preparing to reach this point of somewhat having “security”. There was a great deal of risk involved in our “investments”, but at the time, we always believed that we could get jobs and go back to work very easily if we should fail. Unfortunately, that is not the case as neither of us is capable of obtaining and maintaining a regular full-time job.

I am holding off on trying to get SSI for myself until I can get more diagnostic proof or an actual dx of MS. I have heard on this healthboard that even people in wheelchairs have a hard time getting SSI and yet I have heard that others had no trouble. I am not in “critical need” of assistance at this time, so I shall play a “wait and see what happens” game before even trying.




Last edited by lestoby; 04-22-2006 at 07:33 PM.

 
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Old 04-23-2006, 11:22 AM   #3
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Re: To Kymtnms - SSI Appeal Hearing

Thank you for all your helpful information! I've said over and over to counselors, doctors, nurses that my medications alone would prevent one from driving, working, functioning on a daily basis without even looking at the physical problems yet every doctor hands me a new prescription, think I'm up to 11 different medications a day now, but a few of those will drop off in a month after this sinus infection is treated if it goes away this time.

One problem in getting a favorable decision is my age. I haven't reached that golden age of 50 yet, will be 43 in July. They are looking at my case thinking this woman can work a few more years at something so we will keep denying her.

I didn't realize that the attorney wouldn't be allowed to talk for me. This is why I hired him, was hoping he would do most of the talking because my mind doesn't work fast enough when I'm in a court setting. My mind doesn't work fast in any setting anymore but when I get nervous the words won't come out right to explain my problems to a degree that anyone would understand why they cause me not to be able to work. I do a lot better on paper when there is time to think through the answers. Another problem I've had is communication with these doctors as I was brought up to not complain when things are physically wrong and I'm having to reset my mind on this now when talking to doctors, lawyers and counselors. My parents always referred to people who complained about their illnesses as hypocondriacs whether they were really sick or not so it's been difficult for me to relay information without feeling like I'm doing something terribly wrong. Every time I take my medication I get a feeling of doing wrong too. What wonderful lessons of life our parents leave us with sometimes! Turns out after doing some genealogy research, bipolar ran through my dad's side of the family, every single generation had it, even my father apparently, but it was called "spells" instead of manic depression or bipolar disorder. Those people were really ill but it wasn't talked about...a hush-hush subject. It still is a hush-hush subject, when questioning other family members about it they would whisper answers.

I'm have been thinking of "firing" the attorney but didn't know how to go about doing that since they have already filed the Reconsideration and Request for Hearing. Not that they did anything but fill out the forms......could have done that myself. Also my cousin went to a lot of trouble to help me find the "best" SS attorney in the area so that might make him angry. I've been back and forth on what to do about the attorney but will call the SS office tomorrow to see what the status is on my case and also find out if our state is using CD's. This state is little slower to do new things than some others. My cousin also contacted our congressman to see if he could be any help. His office has advised me on some steps to take next but overall the help they have given hasn't helped hurry anything up nor get me approved. It's more like they are sitting out there watching like spectators but I haven't decided which side they are cheering for.

My new neurologist is starting over with the testing so I really hope the hearing is out far enough for him to get enough tests together to prove things so they don't have to go by the older test reports and also it would be better if they are altogether in one place. When living in Nashville, TN I was shuffled from doctor to doctor, seeing only some of them 1 time so they never had a clear picture of what was going on. Since moving to KY 9 months ago I've stayed with one GP even though I'm not particularily happy with her and have protested when they have tried to send me all over. I like this neurologist and the pain clinic doctor so I'm going to stick with them. I feel like the neurologist will be the most helpful with the disability once he gets all his testing done and has his own reports. The thing with him is he's not in any big hurry where I'm trying to get it all done at once. Think he wants to see the results of the lumbar puncture before doing anything else while I'm calling daily to see that his office has set up the appointment for evoked testing. They can at least schedule the appointment, it can always be cancelled if he decides we need to do some other kind of testing instead. I also have the pain clinic counselor on my side for disability. She might write something for me, she did tell me to make certain that her reports were included when SS asked for the records but from what the lady at the lawyers office was telling me there was no way she could be certain they were included so this is something I need to do. When I see that doctor next week I'll ask to see her too. I never thought about getting the different doctors to write limitation restrictions for me. They have all asked if I'm working and I've told them all no since quitting my job last May because of the medications and physical problems but none of them have said anything about it even when saying I applied for disability. One doctor did tell me to go back to work but he was a heart specialist I was sent to after an ER visit for chest pains and breathing problems. He did a bunch of high $$$ tests that didn't show anything but a left bundle branch block. He said your heart is OK, don't know what will happen with that bundle branch block, probably nothing but don't forget it's there if anything happens down the road, you can go back to work....another one of the "wonderful caring" doctors I've run across. He must have written something about my blood pressure being in the high range too but never did anything about it or mentioned it to me. The denial letter from SS referred to my high blood pressure 2 times and also said that it was being treated..........NOT! It jumps around a lot so no doctor has figured out what to do about it.

Think I will run by the pharmacy and ask them if they can print out a list of all my medications and the papers that come with them for side effects, etc for some reason this little pharmacy doesn't give you that information when you fill a prescription. That will be very useful in court, thank you for pointing that out.

I too believe that God will lead us in the right direction and provide in keeping a decent roof over our heads. He has done it so far and will continue but daily prayers don't hurt as it does get scary when you open your check book and the balance is almost $0.00 with no money due to come in from your ex-husband unless he decides to send it.

I'm sorry to hear that you are having to deal with Workers Comp and SSI at the same time, that is overwhelming. Ten years ago after an auto accident I ended up dealing with my short-term insurance company and the insurance company of the guy who hit me at the same time. It was terrible, seemed everyone wanted different things at different times and it was so difficult to keep up. Then when I was forced to get a lawyer I couldn't get any kind of medical treatment for my neck. No doctor wanted to touch me after they found out it was an accident and I had taken legal action because I had to, they left me no option. After the settlement was finally settled with the other insurance company doctors were suddenly ready to help me. The whole systems is a mess! I'll pray for you and your husband.

Again, thank you for your very informative post!

Lynne

 
Old 04-23-2006, 12:17 PM   #4
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lestoby HB User
Re: To Kymtnms - SSI Appeal Hearing

Wow,

What an ordeal you have been through. Do you have State Disability Insurance (SDI) like we do here in California? Perhaps, you can have your GP complete a Disability Form (which can be made retroactive to the date you left work due to disability). In California, you can get SDI for 6 months to a year. I had my doctor finally complete one in December and she made it retroactive to the date I got sick in August. I was only working part-time and I thought I would eventually get better and go back to work, but that was not the case. SDI made a big beef about it being retro past 45 days, but I guess I gave them a good enough explanation, because they gave me one lump sum going all the way back to August.

A few more points regarding your Hearing:

1. I don't actually know if an attorney can speak on your behalf, since I did not have an attorney for my husband. However, my friend who went through the same ordeal told me that her attorney "did nothing". You can however, have somebody (spouse, friend, etc) speak on your behalf AFTER you have provided your testimony. I did this for my husband. My husband is not a great "communicator" and gets very emotional when speaking about himself and how he is no longer the man he used to be. While he was testifying, I tried to scribble down notes for him to read so that he could add this to his statements. I also wrote down notes, so that I could clarify and add my opinion when it was my turn to speak. Your additional person is not allowed to speak until the very end after all testimony has been provided by you and the Vocational Counselor. Please consder brining a friend or relative who has first hand knowledge about how your disability effects you on a daily basis and who is also a great communicator and defender on your behalf. Also, it is helpful to highlight and/or organize all of your reports so that you can refer to them during the Hearing. Don't feel rushed to answer the Judge's questions - there is no time limit.

2. Please don't downplay your depression and anxiety. SSI takes these conditions seriously as it effects your work and lifestyle habits.

3. If you choose to keep your attorney, please forward or fax them all of the new incoming medical reports and medication side-effects so that they can be prepared to submit these either prior or during the Hearing.

4. If you do not feel prepared by the time they schedule the Hearing, you can always postpone. This almost happened to us because the Vocational Counselor did not show up on time and they did not know where he was, so they almost rescheduled us, but then the guy showed up within 2 minutes before they were about to reschedule.

5. The Courtroom Setting: Just to give you an idea of how informal this setting is; You and about 5 other cases will be scheduled at the same time. You will wait in a lobby area (after checking-in) and when your name is called, you will be taken to a small room that contains Judge's podium with a conference table placed in front. The conference table will provide 2 computers and monitor so that you can refer to your "electronic CD" during the Hearing. The other computer will be used by the Voc Counselor and the Judge will have a computer as well. The entire Hearing will be audiotaped.

I hope this eases some of your anxiety. If it were not for my friend who went through this ordeal telling me what to expect, I would have felt a little panicky too.

Oh by the way...... if you should get approved, it could take up to 60 days from the date of approval before you receive your check. Are you also aware that there is a 5-month waiting period? For instance, my husband was approved disabled effective 8/6/05, therefore, his SDI payments will begin with an effective date of 2/6/06.

Please keep me informed as to how this is going for you and post on this thread again if you think I can answer any new questions for you.


 
Old 04-25-2006, 04:48 AM   #5
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Re: To Kymtnms - SSI Appeal Hearing

Sounds like you and your hubby have been through a lot too! He's so lucky to have someone to help and support him as you have done! Sounds like you have done the foot work and kept everything together. You deserve a big pat on the back!!!

Thank you for the scenario in the hearing room. I had this fear of going in a regular courtroom situation where there are many others waiting to be heard and having to speak in front of a much larger crowd. Even with only a judge and vocational counselor the thought of it gives me an ill feeling in my stomach but I'll do whatever is necessary when the time comes. Guess passing out from anxiety and panic will only help my case right?

The denial letter states they know I suffer from depression and anxiety. They even went as far to suggest trying to find employment that involves the least amount of public contact as possible. Thought that was a strange thing to suggest! I'm curious to see what their psychiatrist stated in his report, that had to have come from him because my psychiatrist hasn't written down anything like that. My entire denial was based on the explanation that they know I suffer from many physical problems and have mental issues with depression and anxiety but they thought I could still find employment. I was a bookkeeper (accts. payable) before getting sick and worked with the general public quite a bit doing that job so finding a job with little public contact isn't an easy task. I'm trying to be more open about the depression issues, my medication should tell them a lot about that problem without much having to be said but I will include definitely include different ways it effects my daily life in my notes to take to the hearing with me.

I'll check into the SDI but so far no one I have asked knows about it being available in KY. The social security office didn't have any information on that up on their boards when I was last in there nor did the Cabinet for Families. Even if they did have it I probably wouldn't be eligible because I moved to KY after getting sick in TN so I haven't worked in this state at all. That's also why I've had difficulty getting some of my doctors records, not that any of them in TN did a darn thing except send me on to another doctor, but all these TN doctors wanted me to come in person to fill out paperwork to get the records released or have the new doctors request them. My new doctors don't really want to see these other doctors tests, they want to do their own testing which is causing a lot of repeat testing but that is OK because the treatment I received in TN makes me wonder if they even read the results at all. I know two of them didn't because it specifically says there is nerve impingement in my neck that needs to be followed up on, orthopedic doctor skipped right over that part. Also my new GP did new MRI's on my brain, when we went to TN for Christmas I stopped in at the doctors office to pick up my MRI's (films and reports) so I handed her the old one to compare it with, she said you've had a chronic sinus infection since this first MRI was taken over a year ago. So I'm now being treated for this on top of all the other problems. She also found that I have goiter......all the TN doctors missed that when doing all their tests. I will say that the KY doctors, even though it's state insurance, have definitely done a much better and thorough job that those in TN even came close too! I've had a little difficulty with my new GP but think I got through to her after breaking down in her office because I was at the end of my rope when she told me they may never figure out what is wrong with me. That may be how it ends up but that was a cruel thing to say to anyone who is seeking help, that made me feel like everything in life was hopeless. A better response would have been that she didn't know. That's when I really started relying on these boards as my cheering squad! Don't know what I would do if these boards weren't out here to give me a boost up from others going through similar experiences!

I have that attorney "doing nothing" feeling! All they have done is fill out a few forms that looked easier than what I originally filled out in the beginning. Getting a message returned is almost impossible and I had an opportunity to see first hand what they do with messages they do receive......little tiny post-it notes all over the desk or messages written on the back of other papers. Those messages probably never make it to the right person, if they did it would have to be a miracle! I was thinking that if I ever could work again applying there would be a good place to start. They really need HELP in that office!

Never thought about postponing the hearing if I wasn't ready, didn't think that would be an option but will definitely keep that in mind when receiving the date. It's stuck in my mind that these people hold my life in their hands in someway so it must be done their way. It's a really scary when you know what they decide could effect your life and the lives of your daughters forever! Wish Social Security (and some doctors too) realized what an effect they have on people's life's!

Yesterday was a bad day so nothing was accomplished. Hopefully today will be better, think knowing I have multiple doctors appointments tomorrow is getting me down but going 1 time a week to 3 different doctors is easier than having the appointments spread out throughout the whole week especially with gas prices. I've already started writing down things that I have to remember to ask for or request when seeing each doctor so nothing is forgotten.

I'll let you know how it goes and will definitely ask when coming across anything else I have questions on. Thank you for being here for me!!!!

Lynne

 
Old 04-25-2006, 06:51 AM   #6
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Re: To Kymtnms - SSI Appeal Hearing

Hi guys. I don't mean to be a buttinski here but I'm going thru the same thing myself. I was denied twice already. I hired an attorney after the first denial. The SS people denied me because they said I had the use of my arms and my depression was only mild therefore I could work, whatever. Anyway. My attorney appealed BEFORE, I gave them the results of my neuropysch test, which came backed markedly impaired in 95% of all of the cognative areas tested plus horrible memory. Now I'm at the hearing level. I got my hearing letter in September it said it could take 6 to 18 months for a hearing.

In the meantime I have a new attorney because the gal that was representing me left the practice and now I have a man. I have only received a letter to inform me of this. I have yet to talk to this man. I'm a little perturbed about the fact that he has not yet called to introduce himself as my new attorney.

Can you fire an attorney that you haven't paid? I signed some sort of letter that they would get 25% of what I get and that would be their fee. However if they had to go above and beyond I would have to pay additional attorney fees for mailings or doctor papers, things like that.

Not only that but I'm not really going to get any of the back pay if I win anyway because my LTD company wants thier portion of their money back for what they've already paid to me.

My brain is so fried over all of this. I filed way back in April of 2005. I filed based on fatigue and cognitive problems, SS on the fist denial letter stated I filed based on fatigue and headaches. This has been so frustrating.

Since filing I have been diagnosed along with my MS as also having, degenerative disc disease and fibromyalgia. The degenerative disc disease by my MS doc and the fibro by my GP.

I'm just so tired of this red tape stuff, it's making me sick. I paid into this system for 20 years and now when I need it, someone who has never seen me, who sits at a desk reading about me has the ability to control what happens to my financial future. That stinks.

I'm sorry to jump in on this thread, I just found it very informative and had a question about attorney firing.

 
Old 04-25-2006, 09:14 AM   #7
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Re: To Kymtnms - SSI Appeal Hearing

Hi Natalies Mom

Hate that you have to be here but welcome to the boards. They have been very informative for me and a place to come to when I get so down from dealing with SS and doctors.

I don't have the answer to your question about firing the attorney because I'm in the same place you are. Maybe some of the others will know about that. You might want to post that question to the disabilities board too. My attorney has only filed 2 papers for me that I could have easily done myself but I also signed that 25% contract. I have yet to talk the "attorney" himself. All I ever see or talk to when calling is the person who gets all the information together for the attorney. In your case it seems if your original attorney was replaced then you should be able to fire the new one with no problem. That's just my opinion.

Sounds like you are in better shape than me for a hearing. You have names for your medical problems. I have DDD and I'm bipolar but they are still testing for the MS like symptoms. One doctor over a year ago said it was Meiners Disease so I went with that but that's not correct. I want to have the correct diagnosis before the hearing so I do hope my hearing is a couple of months out because the new neuro is still testing.

Do you know what happens if you are denied at the hearing? Just thought about that today when stressing over the test results of my LP that are due any day. It's all making me sick so you aren't alone!

Hang in there!

Lynne

 
Old 04-25-2006, 09:54 AM   #8
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Re: To Kymtnms - SSI Appeal Hearing

To NataliesMom,

If you find this discussion helpful, “Jump On and Join In”. I don’t profess to know everything about SSI, I just stumbled along the best that I could and refuted everything they state in their initial denial letter (which seems to be the norm).

Everybody I know on SSI for Disability claims they had to appeal 3 times before being approved. All except for one friend who was dragged 500 feet by a moving car, which resulted in very severe injuries (he was approved right away).

To Lynn and NataliesMom,

I don’t know how to fire an attorney who is working on a contingency basis for each of your states. You may want to contact the Legal Aid Society in your state or file a complaint with the State Bar, or read your contracts carefully and look for a “Termination Clause”. I have a friend who recently fired his SSI attorney, so if I can get in touch with him, I will ask him how he did it. Or, you may want to call the SSA office and ask them. They claim they are there to help you, so it may be worth a shot. Also, ask them how to submit new evidence to SSA while awaiting your Appeal Hearing.

I do know that most of my friends had an attorney help for their SSI Appeals and everybody says “You need a lawyer”, so I guess they are helpful. After all, this is how they earn their money, so I don’t think they would intentionally let the ball drop in your cases. Most probably, they will contact you once they receive a notice of a Hearing date to obtain further evidence and have a consultation to prepare you for the Hearing. Unfortunately, it is a long “wait and see” process and there is not much to do while waiting for SSI to schedule the Hearing.

What happens when your Appeal Hearing is denied? I looked this up on the SSA website and here is what it states:

2626.1 When do you file for civil action in a U.S. District Court?
If you are not satisfied with the Appeals Council decision or its notice of denial of your request for review of the ALJ's decision, you may file for civil action in a U.S. District Court. You may file within 60 days after the date you received notice of the Appeals Council decision or denial. (See section 2621.3 for information about when we presume you received our notice.) You have no right to court review where the Appeals Council has dismissed your request for review or denied your request for review of the dismissal of an ALJ decision


Best of luck to the both of you and keep me informed as to how this process is going for you.

Leslie

 
Old 04-25-2006, 04:19 PM   #9
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Re: To Kymtnms - SSI Appeal Hearing

Thanks Lynn and Leslie. THis whole SSI stuff is so very stressful. I swear I must cry at least 4 or 5 times a week just dealing with doctors, papers, wondering and my health to top it off. That and trying to be a Mom and a wife and a human being when what I really want to do is crawl in my bed and sleep for a week while the government deposits a check in my bank once a month that I deserve.

Geez a civil suit? I don't know about all of that that sounds pretty scary. I think I'd just go back to square one and file a whole new claim or something. I wonder if we could do that? My original application was MS fatigue and cognative problems, now I may be able to blame fibromyalgia fatigue, pain and cognative problems. I'm such a mess anymore, I hate that this has happened to me. I think they think I'm too young. I'm 39, I've got a few good years left in me is what they're thinking. Fine, find me a job where I can sleep for 6 hours and doesn't require thought processing or memory, or a lot of walking because my left side in messed up thanks to MS. If I could work, believe me I would.

I'm sorry, I'm just venting a bit. I'm just so frustrated with our system that we pay into that is supposed to take care of us when things like this happen to us.

This board is chaulk full of useful information. Thank you both so much.

 
Old 04-25-2006, 06:20 PM   #10
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Re: To Kymtnms - SSI Appeal Hearing

I am glad I ran across this post. I just called today to check the status of my SSI claim seeing as how I filed 6 months ago. I am very anxious, so I called almost exactly after the 180 day waiting period (hee hee). Anyways... the man I spoke to told me my file had been sent to the Boston reviewing board and I should be hearing back very shortly. Is this the normal process, that the file is sent, in this case, out of state to be reviewed by another board? I expect to get denied, but hope that isn't the case. Someone posted previously that they are only 43, and therefore approval is hesitant. Well, I am only 21, so I can imagine it will be very hard for them to approve me seeing as how I still have my whole working life ahead of me.

We'll see

 
Old 04-25-2006, 07:59 PM   #11
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lestoby HB User
Re: To Kymtnms - SSI Appeal Hearing

To Curious11,

I looked up the following from the SSA.gov site:

The amount needed for a credit changes from year to year. In 2006, for example, you earn one credit for each $970 of wages or self-employment income. When you've earned $3,880, you've earned your four credits for the year.

The number of work credits you need to qualify for disability benefits depends on your age when you become disabled. Generally, you need 40 credits, 20 of which were earned in the last 10 years ending with the year you become disabled. However, younger workers may qualify with fewer credits.


Before age 24--You may qualify if you have 6 credits earned in the 3-year period ending when your disability starts

Try using the online Benefits Eligibility Screening Tool from the SSA.gov website to see if you qualify.

Do you have an attorney helping you file?

 
Old 04-26-2006, 05:37 AM   #12
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Kymtnms HB User
Re: To Kymtnms - SSI Appeal Hearing

Natalies Mom

I feel as you do, a civil suit sounds really scary. Starting over seems easier but I read on one of those pamphlets they send with the denials or maybe it was on the SS website that if you start over you lose your backpay for those months. So if I became disabled in May 2005, applied October 2005 and it's almost May again it sounds like to start over would cost me a year's worth of backpay. Don't know if I'm figuring this right or not but losing a year would make a civil suit a little less scary. I don't recall anyone posting that has taken it as far as a civil suit but would like to hear from someone who did so I would understand that process better.

Haven't got to my hearing yet and already worried about the next step.......aren't I Ms. Optimistic today?! This pessimistic mood always kicks in when there are doctors appointments scheduled, test results pending (that doctor will probably call while I'm at these other appointments so I'll miss his call) and that bed is calling my name but instead I have to go 120 miles round trip (in the pouring rain today) to these appointments knowing I'll only get more frustrated and one of these 2 doctors is going to say something to upset me or the first one will be running so far behind that it will me make a nervous idiot trying to get to the second appointment on time. Last time they did that to me the receptionist at the 2nd appointment wrote LATE across the top of my chart like I was a child who was tardy for class never taking into consideration all those previous appointments where they were running behind and I've sat in their waiting room for over 2 hours.

Like you, I would rather be working than going through all this but can't. I worked until I just couldn't do it anymore, by the time I got up and got ready to go I was laying on the couch completely exhausted and in terrible pain. It was all I could do to get my girls out of bed to get ready for school some days. To get to these doctors appointments takes getting up at a very early hour, getting ready then resting before leaving. Working was a whole lot easier, had a nice check coming in weekly instead of struggling to make ends meet while waiting on a bunch of pokey people to decide whether or not I deserve my benefits. Then denying me 2 times and suggesting I get a job with the least amount of public contact? Still don't know how they came to that conclusion.

OK I've vented too now so it's time to go see the doctors.

Try to have a less stressful day and hang in there!
Lynne

 
Old 04-26-2006, 08:35 AM   #13
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lestoby HB User
Re: To Kymtnms - SSI Appeal Hearing

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kymtnms
Last time they did that to me the receptionist at the 2nd appointment wrote LATE across the top of my chart like I was a child who was tardy for class
Ha Ha.... she sounds like the "Tardy N*tzi" at my daughters school. This woman goes around coralling kids who are running to class after the 1st bell and makes them follow her around while she catches more kids. End result: instead of being 1 min late to class, they are now 20 min late to class.

She's just trying to inflate her self-importance. Next time they keep you waiting in the waiting room for 2 hours, send them an invoice for your time wasted. I once read an article where somebody did this.

Do try to pace yourself in scheduling your appointments. I hate going to doctors appointments, which is why I only went to the doctor once a year for a well-exam. Whenever I had a pain, I always imagined telling my doctor "It hurst when I do this......" and the doctor's reply would be "Well, don't do that!" So, I just never went and would ride out whatever was bothering me. 20/20 hindsight with this whole MS ordeal, I realized that I did have "warning signs". In a way, I'm kind of glad I waited until I had a severe attack to find out what was wrong with me or I would have spent a lot of time in the doctor's office trying to grasp for answers.

I don't have an official dx, but at least I have a "clue". I am fortunate that I don't NEED to have an official dx to explain to employers, friends, SSI, and family. I can understand how this would be so devastating and frustrating.

Hang in there and try to be more optomistic that you will get the help you need. Remember, you have us on the Healthboard to at least validate your symptoms, complaints, and daily frustrations.

Leslie


Last edited by lestoby; 04-26-2006 at 08:36 AM.

 
Old 04-26-2006, 12:14 PM   #14
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NataliesMom HB User
Re: To Kymtnms - SSI Appeal Hearing

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kymtnms
Natalies Mom

I feel as you do, a civil suit sounds really scary. Starting over seems easier but I read on one of those pamphlets they send with the denials or maybe it was on the SS website that if you start over you lose your backpay for those months. So if I became disabled in May 2005, applied October 2005 and it's almost May again it sounds like to start over would cost me a year's worth of backpay. Don't know if I'm figuring this right or not but losing a year would make a civil suit a little less scary. I don't recall anyone posting that has taken it as far as a civil suit but would like to hear from someone who did so I would understand that process better.

Last time they did that to me the receptionist at the 2nd appointment wrote LATE across the top of my chart like I was a child who was tardy for class never taking into consideration all those previous appointments where they were running behind and I've sat in their waiting room for over 2 hours.

OK I've vented too now so it's time to go see the doctors.

Try to have a less stressful day and hang in there!
Lynne
Hee Hee, ya gotta love the nerve of those doctors . My DH said we should be getting the co-pays when we have to wait over an hour to see a doctor for 15 minutes. He actually did a "dunt dunt dunt daaaaaa" when we had one doctor come in who we had been waiting on for over an hour and a half. The doctor couldn't apologize enough, I was soooo embarassed, my DH thought he was hyterically funny.

I'm going to check on that starting over thing instead of a civil suit thing. I do sound awfully "glass is half empty" now don't I? I USED to be a very optomistic gal, now I'm very jaded, I think it's my lesion filled head.

Is jaded the wright word? Maybe it's shaded, or shady? No I can't think of what it is, I'm just not as hopeful and full of hope and everything is going to lovely and life is a bowel of cherries and rainbow sprites and tinkerbells and pretty flowers. GAG, I'm gonna barf now. Anyhoo, it's a bit more sedate now, much less of the above.

Have a good one.

 
Old 04-27-2006, 04:39 AM   #15
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Re: To Kymtnms - SSI Appeal Hearing

Morning Leslie and Natalie's Mom,

Yesterday was an ordeal as I expected! My GP (which I will definitely be changing in October!) had the nerve to laugh and make fun of me for thinking I have a terrible disease like MS. I never said MS necessarily, that's what the infectous disease wrote in his letter and he said MS or a demyelating disease of some kind. She asked if I had seen the neuro yet and wanted to know what he thought. I explained about the lumbar puncture being done and evoked testing coming up, her response was this should ease your mind about any terrible diseases because you are a healthy woman. I said I am??? Is that why I quit a wonderful job and haven't worked in over a year, is that why I'm too fatigued to get out of bed a lot of days, is that why I'm so off balance that I fall in the yard? They did an MRI on my shoulder a month ago from falling 2 times within 2 weeks, took me a month to convince her there was something wrong with it, so it's been 9 weeks since I fell and my shoulder is still hurting. When calling in to get the results of that MRI the nurse told me it was a tiny bone spur, nothing to worry about, just keep my 26th appointment. Doctor tells me yesterday there's a little more to it...fluid on the joint and the bone spur but physical therapy, motrin and ANOTHER steroid pack should fix it. I also have been having left ear pain off and on for the past week so I mentioned it to her while in her office to prevent another visit. She said Oh I better check that, it wouldn't surprise one bit if something is wrong there too.......took that as she was saying that I make up stuff wrong with me. Well there is fluid on my ear and it's starting to get infected, so there!

Got a copy of that MRI because my next appointment was at the pain doctors office. He looked it over and told me the fluid isn't causing the problem, it's the bone and bone spur. That's 2 totally different diagnoses. He made a copy of it and said next month they will do an injection into my shoulder. I'm really not sure who to believe, the GP doctor downplays everything but the pain doctor is into $$$. I asked him if he thought physical therapy would help, hesitantly he said no but if she wanted me to go then go. The pain doctor also went on an did another facet injection into my back, like that lumbar puncture done last week wasn't enough. He missed the first time and had to reposition the needle.

Needless to say the GP isn't going to be a bit of help in getting disability approved. She refuses to acknowledge there is anything wrong with me, even though she found goiter on her tests and also said my thyroid has to be scanned every 2 months from now because of a pea-sized thing in it, she thinks I'm "a healthy woman". She thinks that Motrin should be helping my DDD and I should get off all this medication. I would like to do that myself because I'm sick of trying to keep up with which pill to take when. Hopefully that neuro will figure out what is really wrong and at least give it some kind of name.

Days like yesterday, seeing a doctor like that, would make anyone see the glass 1/2 empty! I didn't go to a doctor for 5 years for any reason and now that's all I do. My 14 year old daughter said if I would have went during those 5 years then maybe now all this wouldn't be happening but I was like you Leslie, figured they would say if this bothers you then don't do it. My daughter understands some of what I'm going through but she's not very optimistic about any of it.

Like that idea about invoicing the doctors office for my time! Think I'll do that after making the switch in October, don't want to make her too angry until she isn't my doctor anymore. This state insurance won't let you switch but at certain times during the year. Only waitied an hour and 15 minutes yesterday to see Ms. Smarty-Britchees which is better than last time when I was waiting for 2 hours. They schedule too many people at one time. There was standing room only when arriving at 10:15.

Guess I'm through venting again for the day. My hands are shaking too bad to continue typing anyway but "I'm a healthy woman"!

Try to have a good day.
Lynne

 
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