Preparing to file for disability? Help

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by tracii, Jan 24, 2007.

  1. tracii

    tracii New Member

    Hey Everyone,

    I went into my local SSA office YEARS ago (apx 1994-96) & was told that I needed to have been out of work for a year already before filing. Of course this was not true.

    I guess for years I thought as long as I can do SOMETHING that I couldn't get SSA. I was young, uninformed & confused.

    Now, I REALLY have to apply but I cannot access any of my old medical paperwork & other needed documents. I've seen TONS of doctors through the years & couldn't even begin to remember their names without my old datebooks/medical documents I may have.

    I will need to prove my disabilities started in the 90's as I do not have any substantial work credits for too many years (the years my dumb@ss should have already been collecting!).

    To me this whole mess is a HUGE undertaking, starting with "waiting for a nice day so everything can be pulled out of the garage" to get to the file boxes.

    Hubby is stretched as far as he can but I cannot move boxes & furniture to get to the needed boxes.

    Is it SO very important to initially have my medical history? What can I do without this information? Can I file without all of this?

    What exactly do I need to file for the first time? Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
  2. survivor13

    survivor13 New Member

    hi tracii

    I was all set to give you advice on benefit application when i looked at your pfrofile and saw that you are in the states so im sorry but as i am in england i cannot help you as i am not familiar with american benefit law. however i would like to point out that one of the problems we brits encounter with disability applications is at the form filling in stage you MUST fill in all questions and base your answers as if it is your worst day not how you feel at the time of form filling. As Fms is so up and down try to answer honestly but as if you are having your worst day and that will enlighten the examining officer a little to your plight,sorry i could nt have been more help and hope that one of your native countrymen can help you further with you dilemna
    wishing you a painfree and easy life (we can live in hope)

    survivor (because i am one)
  3. tracii

    tracii New Member

    Thanks for the advice survivor and the bump froggy!

    Lately they have ALL been my worst days so no problem with filing out the forms properly in that aspect!
    [This Message was Edited on 01/24/2007]
  4. tracii

    tracii New Member

  5. joeb7th

    joeb7th New Member

    Tracii, Hi.

    I am in the same boat as you. However, I am 55 now.

    My body got hit with so many things over 1 year ago. I have everything anyone can think of here. And incredibly , I just got "another" scary diagnosis on top of all these other nightmare symptoms ! That I also now have bronchial asthma, sinusitis and scarring in my left lung!

    All this in one year???

    I applied to SSDI just a month or so no one told me to do this 6 months "before" my state disability ran out. I think doctors should mention this to you when they see you are so ill and that you have lost your normal work careers and are on state disability. Someone could have mentioned this to me but no one did.

    So, now, I have no Calif. state income at all...and I must wait months just to find out if I even qualify for SSDI.

    I have filled out their second request for information forms just last night and my wife has to fill out a "third party" form of 10 to 12 pages with the same exact questions I had to fill out. I guess they are looking for a million ways to "cross-check" everything you say to see if they can find anything to deny you.

    And these forms take forever.

    But, I am sending them everything I can about every doc I have seen in the last year.

    Like you, beyond that and I lose track. Guess, you need more advice on this board. I am just a beginner. But wish you well. Trust me. I know how discouraging this all is.

    Imagine your entire body falling apart and in pain and you are stressed, anxious and depressed...and you have to go through this nightmare before our own government with our own tax monies will even consider helping you. And with your careers over!

    This country may be the worlds biggest toughie ... but it is far from being good at taking care of their own tax paying, hard working law abiding citizens when they need help. It's a sad but screamingly TRUE statement about our country. Wake up America...but too many don't care until it's THEM that get knocked down.
    [This Message was Edited on 01/24/2007]
  6. swedeboy

    swedeboy Member

    I applied for disability in Jan. 2005 and I was approved in August 2005. I Live in california and I receive SSI and SSDI.

    I submitted a daily journal that I kept for 30 days detailing my symptoms. I also was evaluated by both a SSDI state appointed doctor and pyscologist, which I think helped my claim. I also submitted a detailed list of my immediate symptoms and limitaions listed below.

    There is an organization if you need an attorney called the National Organization of Social Security Claimants’ Representatives you can reach them at They are a non-profit/non-commercial organization. There phone number is (800) 431-2804

    Limitations from Chronic Fatigue Syndrome:


    -Overwhelming fatigue, exhaustion, weakness, persistent flu-like symptoms and postexertional malaise lasting more than 24 hours.
    - Persistent intractable muscle and joint pain
    - Headaches of a new severity
    - Unrefreshing sleep
    - Sore throat
    - Impaired short term memory and concentration
    - Visual impairments such as focusing
    - Lightheaded and increased fatigue from prolonged standing
    - Dizziness and vertigo
    - Nausea, bloating, indigestion, loss of appetite
    - Confusion
    - Anxiety, and episodes of sadness/ depression.
    - Decreased libido


    - stand or sit upright for more than a few minutes on relatively bad days.

    - perform activities with a schedule, maintain regular attendance, and sustain an ordinary routine.

    - complete a normal workday and workweek without interruption by symptoms and perform at a consistent pace without an unreasonable number and length of rest periods.

    - stand, sit upright, and or concentrate for more than three to four hours on relatively good days. (I have had an average of about 10-12 good days per month for the last 12 months)

    - walk consecutively for more than 15-20 min. on good days

    - walk consecutively for more than a few min. on bad days.

    - drive far distances such as 50 miles or more on good days.

    - drive at all on bad days.

    - lift and or carry heavy objects such as gallons of water or bags of groceries on bad days.

    - see clearly for short moments from dizzy spells on both good and bad days.

    - perform cognitive tasks, such as things involving simple and detailed verbal and or literary instructions on bad days and frequently on good days.

    - focus and concentrate, limiting my ability to read for more than a half hour to an hour on a good day, and no more than a few min. on a bad day.

    - maintain attention and concentrate for extended periods of time.

    - to understand and remember simple and detailed instructions, work procedures, and conversations on bad days and frequently on good days.
  7. JLH

    JLH New Member

    You made a statement that you "do not have any substantial work credits for too many years".

    You must have 40 work credits in order to file for SSDI.

    There is no need to look for medical records if you don't have enough work credits to qualify.

    As "skeesix" mentioned to you, I would check out the Social Security's website ( and do the disability screening quiz to see what you are eligible for.

    I did not send them any of my medical records. All I did was list the doctors who I was currently seeing and they (the SSA) contacted them for my records.

    You asked "What exactly do I need to file for the first time?" Well, you need to file for every ailment which you have and that is bad enough to keep you from holding down a full-time job.

    FOYBOYFOY New Member

    my advice is hire an attorney-----thats it
    i'm in the process BINDER & BINDER GOD BLESS FOY
  9. tracii

    tracii New Member

    I know there is a loophole in there (I have to re-read what I have read), but here is a quote from :
    In fact, there are numerous examples of individuals who have DLI (Date Last Insured) issues because, although they worked for 20 years or longer, their work in recent years was insufficient to carry their social security disability coverage forward.

    When you have a past DLI issue (the social security office can tell you what her DLI is), then the only way to qualify for title II social security disability benefits is to prove that the disability commenced prior to the DLI. Of course, if an application is for title 16 ssi benefits, DLI does not even apply. However, in ssi cases a spouse's income will be deemed and, to some extent, counted in the eligibility budgeting process which, often, makes a married ssi claimant ineligible for benefits.

    I just have to do the research on this ~ I was hoping there was someone on the board who may have some information about this.

    It's difficult to find information about it on :(
  10. swedeboy

    swedeboy Member

    I only have 25 work credits and I get both SSDI and SSI. I think you need 40 work credits to get Social Security at retirement age with or with-out a disability. I get SSDI and SSI makes up for the rest so I meet the state minimun. I am 31 and I recieve SSDI and I worked for a total of 6 years before I became disabled.
  11. tracii

    tracii New Member

    about all of this & just applied years ago I wouldn't be in this position. ACK!
  12. ChristineInPA

    ChristineInPA New Member

    There's no need to beat yourself up any more for what you did or didn't do.

    Call an attorney and get a free consultation. They will tell you if you have a case. Trust me, they will not take you on if they think you can't win. They won't charge anything unless you win.

    Let someone who knows what he/she is doing handle this. It is way too stressful to try to figure it out on your own.
  13. JLH

    JLH New Member


    How Much Work Do You Need?
    Updated: January 11, 2007

    In addition to meeting our definition of disability, you must have worked long enough--and recently enough--under Social Security to qualify for disability benefits.

    Social Security work credits are based on your total yearly wages or self-employment income. You can earn up to four credits each year.

    The amount needed for a credit changes from year to year. In 2006, for example, you earn one credit for each $1000 of wages or self-employment income. When you've earned $4,000, 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.

    IMPORTANT: Remember that whatever your age is, you must have earned the required number of work credits within a certain period ending with the time you become disabled. Your Social Security Statement shows whether you meet the work requirement at the time it was prepared. If you stop working under Social Security after the date of the Statement, you may not continue to meet the disability work requirement in the future.

    SSI vs. SSDI:

    SSI is a program run by Social Security that pays monthly checks to the elderly, the blind and people with disabilities who don't own much or who don't have much income. If you get SSI, you usually get food stamps and Medicaid, too. Medicaid helps pay doctor and hospital bills.

    While eligibility for Social Security disability (SSDI) is based on prior work under Social Security, SSI disability payments are made on the basis of financial need.

    Children may qualify for disability benefits under either the Social Security program or the SSI program.

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