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Thread: SS reframed my degenerative nerve disorder as financial manipulation

  1. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by SCI-Nurse View Post
    It may not help, but consider contacting a staffer in your Congressional representative's office and see if they cannot intervene on your behalf. I would also recommend getting a different attorney, even if out of your area.

    This sounds like an excellent idea, try to meet with an aide to your rep so they can see the extent of your disability and thus get committed to helping. Be sure to file an appeal in writing within 60 days of any adverse decision. The 1st appeal will be heard probably by people of the same level of expertise and in the same office, so maybe don't expect too much at this level. If denied here file the appeal in writing within 60 days. At this next level you will get a hearing before an administrative law judge who will probably utilize a disability expert who hopefully will have appreciation that your disability is progressive and you no longer have the ability to earn the level of substantial gainful activity. I do think an OT evaluation might be helpful. I think you meet the disability criteria under peripheral neuropathy. It seems the hangup is your earnings. Why do they think you provided fraudulent earnings info?

  2. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by Sarafino View Post
    Thanks for all the insights. As fast as proving I am disabled, they didn?t even consider that part. I am a full time chair user with very obviously atrophied legs, arms, and hands. Apparently the local SS office fired all the old employees and replaced them with young people just out of the military with no medical training, I am sure they think everything can be faked and don?t even know what atrophy is. According to the SSA their definition of total disability is when you can not earn more than $1200 a month, but I must be wrong about that. Having a hobby is not the same thing. I don?t see how a hobby can be assigned an hourly wage. It is such a load of BS.
    The medical definition of disability differs from the legal definition of disability. A medical disability is something that restricts function. A legal disability is the inability to work. If you are working full time then you are 0% disabled in the legal definition, regardless of your medical disability.

    Please understand SSDI qualification requirements. You need to be totally disabled in the legal sense to qualify for SSDI. Once you stated that you can work 4 hours per day, you were immediately disqualified. They have no love for you. Don't expect any. They just wanted to close your file and move on. So they used your words against you. I am sure you did not mean that you can work 4 hours per day with a brush in your mouth.

    This is where professional help is important. I'll say it again, fire that attorney. Did you look into finding a disability advocate? They may be more motivated to help than an attorney.
    Last edited by August West; 12-30-2019 at 04:26 PM.

  3. #13
    Senior Member Sarafino's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    SW Colorado---chair user from nerve disorder
    August, I know someone who was working full time and had her hours reduced and then was approved for disability and was approved in a month, without hiring an attorney. People still work and qualify for disability as long as they are under SGA. She certainly did, and I am more disabled than her. The difference being she works for a company, and I worked for my own company.

    I gave up on getting any help from advocates, and I REALLY tried. Both locally and state. The state advocacy group does not return calls. The local one has no idea what to do with me, I guess I am quite unusual because I had my own company. They gave me a ten year old book on starting a business while being on SSDI, when what I asked about is exactly opposite.

    The douchebag case manager immediately did not like that I had my own company, since I could decide how much to pay myself. He did not want to see that I could only pay myself what I had actually earned. This guy wanted 5 years of tax returns, both business and personal. When I brought them he was confused as to why I had 2 returns per year. Business and personal. Yes, I am serious. This guy is totally inept. The lawyer I hired is local and knows these people and he tells his clients that if this guy is working the window to leave and go back a different day until it is someone else. I like the lawyer because he dislikes this guy so much.

    You all are awesome, btw!!!! I don?t think I have the energy to fight this fight though. Pretty sure my case fell through some crack because it is not showing as active on the SSA website, and if so, I am not resubmitting. I am going to live off the money my dad left me for as long as I can.
    chair user since 2009 from a neurological disorder

  4. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by Sarafino View Post
    People still work and qualify for disability as long as they are under SGA.
    Yes. You can work and still be totally disabled in the legal sense. But it's still up to you to make your best case. Doesn't seem like your attorney has given you the best guidance in that direction. But I'm glad you like him.

    Fortunately, you can pay your bills from your inheritance. I hope that includes medical bills. Because you know how large just one medical bill can be. Good luck.

  5. #15
    Senior Member Sarafino's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    SW Colorado---chair user from nerve disorder
    I am on my states working adults with disabilities Medicaid program, so that is covered but I need to earn some money to stay eligible. Not much, though. I feel like I am trapped between these two worlds. It seems like things work better for people already on SSDI who then start up a small business or work part time, then get on a working adults program. It’s like I came at everything backwards.
    chair user since 2009 from a neurological disorder

  6. #16
    Wow. I really feel for you. Stuck like this. I know what it is like to want to work and have the system be against you. It's almost like they are punishing you to even try.

    You are correct. They provide incentive to work when you are on disability. But when you apply, any ability to work is used against you. So wrong.

    They interview me annually. They ask if I can work and if not why? I tell them I would like to work. They say that they will provide a special program where I can earn money and still keep my disability payments and Medicare healthcare coverage for a year. Then I ask them, will I lose my Medicare healthcare coverage after then? They say yes you may. I tell them that I can't take that chance. They say they understand, and that's pretty much the end of the conversation.

    Point is that as hard as it may be to get on disability, once you're on it's hard to get off. Go figure.
    Last edited by August West; 12-31-2019 at 04:51 PM.

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