How hard is it to get SSD in NJ

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by 6ftfromedge, Jun 16, 2003.

  1. 6ftfromedge

    6ftfromedge New Member

    Anyone from NJ collecting SSD? I have an appointment next Thursday for my interview. I have all my info except that I am waiting on 2 phone calls, because I don't remember the names of 2 doctors who treated me. Do you think that I have more of a chance of approval because I was hospitalized for chronic depression/anxiety/manic/panic disorders, and I am finally on med's (4 days now) plus the FM? I also am planning on writing out the series of episodes that had me hospitlilzed in a mental hospital for 8 days, that should help also? My friend has been collecting for 13 years for CFS, I don't know if depression was the main reason she went to apply for or not. I'm just very scared about this whole process. If I do get approved, my husband and I will be separating, because then we will have the extra money for me to live on. Anyone from NJ who has gotten approved? How long did this take? Some people say a long time and others say a few months. There is also a date on my paperwork that says if I don't apply (have everything signed, sealed etc) by Dec 2003, I cannot apply. I'm just very nervous, I'm trying to look on the bright side of the horrible events that I went through to get me to this place in my life, and look at them as helpful things that could help me collect.

    When my depression first started, I had taken alot of pills and my husband didn't know what to do so he took me to the emergency room, where they didn't pump my stomach or anything like that, I was just really out of it and slept it off, but I had to agree to check myself in to the mental facility the next day. Well I kept the appointment the next day, and was asked to go into the man's office to check me in and when he left the room to get something for me to sign, I left the facility. If I write that, that should help right? I was so manic, and now I find out about the FM. Also, this brings me to another question, I have an FM dr appt next week, (2 days before my SSD appt), should I tell him about my plan to apply, and the other is should I wait until I see my other dr (who I just started seeing 5 days ago) and reschedule my SSD appointment until I have both those visits under my belt?

    Another episode I had, I was on my way to work and I had one of the most severe panic attacks ever, I called my husband from a payphone and had him call my boss to explain my situation, that I was sitting at a rest stop (10 miles away from my job) and that I couldn't cope, and then I took a leave of absense.
    Any advice? Will these instances help me?
  2. wendy4785

    wendy4785 New Member

    Hi..I'm very new to these boards. Your post caught my eye, as Im from NJ as well. Im in Camden County outside Philly. I've just been dx'd with djd, as well as cfs and fibro. Im going to see a Physical Therapist on wednesday. I was told she will refer me to aquatic therapy, and hopefully be able to help me figure out disability. Im new to all this "good stuff" (info) Im finding here. Please feel free to email me privately. A new friend is always nice! Im going to be posting a lot of questions...Feedback is always welcome!

    Wendy
    wendy4785@aol.com
  3. tulip922s

    tulip922s New Member

    I live in New York state but thought I would share my experience with you since my SSD was APPROVED on Friday (yup, still doing the happy dance in my head) by a NJ administrative law judge. Apparently NY state is in such a backlog that they have enlisted the help of NJ to expedite their cases which I would think would be good news for you, considering NJ is in a better postition to review cases in a more timely manner.

    You pose some interesting questions about what you should write regarding your experiences with your illnesses. My advice to you (keep in mind I am no expert) is to be totally honest and very detailed. I would definitely include all of your experiences with your illnesses and by all means let them know how negatively they have affected your life. ALL of your medical records will be requested, so complete honesty is a MUST,,,,I would leave nothing out, again, this is only my opinion.

    I would also let each doctor you see know that your illness has been so devastating that you have now had to apply for SSD. This gives them a heads up on what you are going through as well as the fact their records will be requested.

    I was sooooo ill when I applyed for SSD that I could not make the appointment,,,,I had all I could do to crawl on my hands and knees to the bathroom at that time. My interview was done over the phone.

    I became ill 8/01 and received my award 6/03, however, I did not apply for SSD until 5/02. There is a five month waiting period from the time you are unable to work.

    Not to scare you, but, the SSD process can be arduous. I gathered all the information I could from books from CFIDS websites, books from the library, and did online research.

    Considering you have other symptoms besides CFS/FM, perhaps your case will be approved the first time around. That would be great,,,,mine wasn't. I was initially denied and had to appeal. At this level it is VERY important to obtain the services of a lawyer,,,,I can't begin to stress that enough. They usually only get paid when your case is approved, normally 25% of your retro benefits.

    My recommendation to you is to make a list of questions when you go for your interview,,,,ie. How long before I should get a decision? How much will I get if approved?,,,etc. etc. I found my local office very helpful with this information.

    I wish you the best of luck and am sorry to hear that on top of this illness you will be losing your marriage. The same thing happened to me. I not only lost my health, my job, and my home,,,,my husband told me he no longer wanted to live with an "invalid". So I had to add a divorce on top of the rest of the mess. Keep us posted on how you are doing,,,,hang in there. Tulip