SSDI Denial Letter Today - No Choice But to Accept Job

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by nancyw, Aug 18, 2003.

  1. nancyw

    nancyw New Member

    Well, I talked to my disability case worker about an hour ago and she said a decision had been made regarding my claim. She said I should receive my letter pretty soon. Since I hadn't gotten my mail on Friday or Saturday, I just drove to the mail box to check. They denied my claim saying I could move my arms and legs satisfactorily; I had had extensive medical workups done and everything was normal (neuro, ENT, rheumy, etc.); and depression was controlled by medications. Now I'm forced to take the job that I'm 99% sure is going to offered me this week or next. I will tell the employer that I might have to go to the doctor on occasions for my fibro, but I'm not going to jeopardize this job. I have no choice - I don't have any money left. I'm going to think positive (even though I'm scared to death I won't mentally be able to perform at the top) that getting back into the working world will help me not think about my illness and will help my depression. If it turns out I can't do the job and I refile for disability, would a failed job attempt help or hurt me? P.S. I've got an eye appointment this Friday again because I'm having a lot of pain behind my left eye which makes my left side of face to numb. This is the eye that I had the infection in that started this flare, but has been rechecked a couple of times with nothing noticed. Such is life, I guess. Responses appreciated.
  2. CrazyHorseLady

    CrazyHorseLady New Member

    NancyW,
    So sorry. Do what you have to do right now but appeal the decision immediately. My husband is 100% disabled veteran and was denied for SSD (gee, does that make sense?). Appealed right away and still will be approximately 12-16 months before a hearing is scheduled for an appeal. They really try and wait you out and if you're under say 60-65 years old it's really tough because they'll always say there's something you can do. Have you thought about getting a Social Security Disability lawyer? They sometimes take cases on contingency fees (no win, no pay)but they seem to have an edge at getting their cases approved. Just a suggestion. Good Luck again.
    CrazyHorseLady
  3. JannyW

    JannyW New Member

    Nancy,
    Did you have statements from your doctor that you are disabled? Sorry, but I'm not sure exactly where you are in the process ... do you have an attorney? I would appeal the decision; per SSA you can earn a max of $780 while disabled, so you could work. It's a tough spot to be in, I know.

    My claim was filed over a year ago; I have been out from work for 14 months now. Both my initial claim and my appeal were denied; I'm now waiting for my hearing date. I tried to go back to work but couldn't, so I am drawing off my IRA just to make ends meet. If I'm not approved by Dec. 31st, I'll owe taxes & penalties on what I've withdrawn.

    Hang in there, kiddo :) You've got friends here.

    Jan ^v^
  4. Mikie

    Mikie Moderator

    Almost everyone gets denied twice before it is appealed and brought to a hearing. A good atty. will have docs sign a questionnaire that you are not able to work and are disabled according to SSD's Listing 1.02.

    Our judge retired and SS is months behind now on hearings. They hope that by delaying the process that people will give up. If you cannot do this job, have your atty. file an appeal. It can't hurt.

    Love, Mikie
  5. teach6

    teach6 New Member

    First of all, all SSDI attorneys work on a contingency basis. There is also a maximum they are allowed to receive. This amount is set by federal law, so you will know the maximum of your back pay that will go to your attorney.

    As for the failed work attemtpt, before I filed for SSDI I had tried returning to my teaching job, on a half-time basis with modified duties. It was only for three months, but it was too much for me. When I filed I was told that it would be counted as a failed work attempt and that if anything it might help my chances of receiving SSDI, since it showed I was willing to work, but couldn't do it. It also meant that my disability date would go back to when I originally left my job.

    I'm in the ALJ stage right now and waiting for a judge to be assigned to my case. I've had an attorney all the time. He sent me for neuro-psych testing to help show my cognitive impairments. I've also had a positive tilt table test, which shows that I am truly impaired by NMH.

    It's a tough call about what you should do. I think you are the only one who knows what will be right for you. Just be aware that you may have to begin the SSDI process all over again.

    If you have no income at all you would be elegible for public assitance of some type. You may want to check into that. It can be in the form of food stamps, housing, medical, etc.

    Do you own a home, or do you rent? If you have an extra bedroom you may want to think about renting it out. I know that in my area you can get good money for a room. That would give you some money, without working. If you don't have an extra room perhaps you could consider renting a room yourself. I know it's not ideal, but you have to do what you have to do. Either of these would also give you extra money to save if you do decide to take the job.

    Good luck to you.
    Barbara
  6. achy

    achy New Member

    Nancy, I hope you saw my followup to your earlier reply. I am sorry you got the denyal, but am not surprised...most of us have gotten them also. It is very hard to get an approval wihtout going before the judeg....unfortunately, it takes apprix 2 yrs to do so...how is one to survive wiht no income for 2 years?!

    Have you spoken to an attorney? I know there is a program that let's you "try" working for a while to see how it goes, but thanks to fibro fog i can't remember the name of it. I "think" it would apply in your case. You can file an appeal and get one step closer on your disabiltiy, while trying to work at the same time....Kill two birds as they say.

    I hope things work out. Keep up the positive attitude who knows, this may be your dream job, wiht a dream boss that's willing to work wiht your limitations.

    Warm fuzzies
    Achy
  7. sofy

    sofy New Member

    You seem to have a good attitude. Having faith that all will work out for the best is all you can do right now. If you absolutely cannot do the job then you can start to deal with that situation at that time. Lets us hope this is an omen that you will be ok.
    If one believes that God provides the timing of this job and the denial letter are just perfect. I hope you love your new job and flourish in the new atmosphere. Many here with fibro do hold down full time jobs and manage so let us hope that you can too.
  8. marushka80

    marushka80 New Member

    So Sorry to hear that you were denied your disability. I know it can be so discouraging, but try to hang in there. It took me 3 years before I finally received my approval and only after being denied 3 times. I knew that I couldn't work anymore after almost killing myself to keep on trying. I did have to get a disability lawyer and even moved during the process and had to find a new lawyer after I moved and they then transferred my appeal to make it easier for me to get there. It can be a long and lonely road, but what helped me was the firm belief that I was in the right! Too bad the judges don't realize that most of us would give anything to have our former health and lives back. We didn't choose this, it just happened and we have to learn to live with it. I hope you refile even if you have to go to work for a while in the meantime. I will keep you in my prayers and heart!
    Mary
  9. Ahorsesoul

    Ahorsesoul New Member

    Fibromyalgia Network has a good article on disablity called "Why Disability Testing for FMS is often Misleading:Advice for FMS/CFS Patients and their Disability Team". Keep trying. Read everying on the internet about filing including the Social Security's guidelines for doctors. Take the job and do what you can. But keep filing for SSD. This is a horrible disease that knocks us flat!
  10. tygerwolfe

    tygerwolfe New Member

    i received my denial letter today from the alj. i've been crying all day then finally decided to find people online who are going through the same things as me. so this is my third denial and i asked myself and my lawyer...what did i do wrong? didn't i explain it right or did i overexplainm it. i feel so helpless now. but hearing that you were denied three times helps me out a little. i thought that this is it..im done. do you have any advice for me that might help for this next appeal. what specialists have you seen? im a single mother of four and ive been not working totally since april of this year. i tried to work at the begining of the year...just to give it a shot...but it lasted 3 months and i ended up in the hospital with pleurisy and costachondritis, which by the way the latter hasn't gone away yet. now im venting. but after crying all day i can't help it. then i heard john ritter died....things can't be much worse can they?
  11. Lana56

    Lana56 New Member

    Nancy,
    You are in a tight spot-yes i am too! First off you must appeal your denial from SSD.Don't let it go,please.There is a process with this that you go through and I for good reason hate to see people give up.I went the whole way with a lawyer and still lost.What people don't know is there is a certain amount of time to prove the case from the date you stop working.Ofcourse a lawyer can keep the case open for longer than that,but if you let things go without appealing the decision you may run out of time to reapply or appeal the denial.Also after not working for ten years(which I haven't)you lose your work credits that made you eligable for DDS in the first place.I don't know where you are in the process,but I do know that time means everything with the laws-ofcourse they can make you wait for ever when you case is open.All I know is I can never apply for DDS ever again and found out the laws too late.I hope you have a lawyer-mine ofcourse did not do his job.Do not let your case go.I don't know how it works as far as working when you are going through the process and understand you need the income.All I can do is encourage you to have a lawyer and keep fighting.Best of luck from someone who lost out on benefits and lives in constant pain Lana56
  12. Chelz

    Chelz New Member

    Hi Nancy. I don't know much about SSDI, so I can't give you any advice. I just wanted to post to wish you luck in your job, if you take it.

    I'm starting a part time job next week and very nervous. I'm running out of money as well. Throwing you some good luck wishes and please pace yourself. Hugs to you Chelz.
  13. Tunes

    Tunes New Member

    Nancy,

    Appeal it, right away! I think they give you 60 days (perhaps more) and will give you paperwork with the date of your appeal, but if you miss the appeal date, then .. you have to start the whole process over again. The amount of time you have to appeal, should be in the denial letter.

    I don't know what an SSDI Case Worker does. Right off the hop, I got an SS Lawyer. Their fees are paid for out of the "back benefits" check, should you win appearing before and ALJ (Administrative Law Judge) The paid help you are dealing with at present, doesn't understand didilly squat! They just chip away at you. The people I had to deal with first, were discourteous, rude, and demeaning. I asked for another application, with a human being. He wasn't much better when I went into the local office. I asked him, what is this? You guys take classes on how to be snots? Don't let any of them demean you and don't accept the denials.

    We are inundated with all kinds of repitious paperwork, asking the same questions (although differently), and it alone can be discouraging. Make copies of what you send them.

    Others here have said most times cases are denied, 2 times. I was denied once, by the SS Admin., and appealed within the specified time to do so. Then I moved 1500 miles away, released previous attorney from his services, and obtained another one where I live now. I also obtained copies personally, for all the MRI's, lists of presriptions per Walgreens recordkeeping, doctors records, etc. etc., and brought them with me when I moved. Your doctor should be able to give you copies of his office notes. He's prescribing an anti-depressant? For what, other than the obvious? A lawyer can haul them out of him, should he/she say those notes belong to him/her.

    I'm not sure exactly where you are in the "process" but keep the process going. They try to wear you down, and that is their objective. (Remember SSD Attorneys don't charge you, until you win a case and take a percentage from the back benefits)

    They almost succeeded in wearing me down, with tears also, not to mention adding more stress and nervousness, sent me to "their" doctors which was a joke as they don't know you or your illnesses, and just think .. who pays them??? Just keep jumping through their hoops, get an SSD attorney, and if you fail at the work attempt, it does not go against you. Get an SSDI attorney asap though. They help a lot. They don't relieve all the stress, but some, and that's what counts.

    I had not worked since Sept. 2000. I filed in March of 2001. I was denied once, and appealed. I moved, and we were in rather dire straights financially. I was scared we'd end up on street, as husband's job had been eliminated due to 9/11 attacks and unemployment was going to run out. I tried to work and it failed. After three months, I could not keep up with it. Plus, was taking medications moreso or more of, in order to do so, and that doesn't always gel well in any work environment. I wasn't as sharp as a tack? Floored myself with the pace, the hours, the pain, etc.

    Regarding the eye pain. Years ago I was given several anti-depressants. I started out on Paxil and took that for two years, in the end being at 40 mg. per day. I never thought I was depressed in the first place, rather stressed. I told the doctor that I had severe eye pain in my eyes. I asked .. could this anti-depressant cause this? No answer. He changed med. to Zoloft, then Effexor, and lastly good ole Prozac. The latter worked itself up to 40 mg. per day. All the while, the eye pain persisted. Since I couldn't get an answer out of this doctor, or any doctor, had my eyes examined by a specialist who saw nothing, I saw this book Talking Back to Prozac, paperback. I bought it, and it was quite a book!! Then I got a PDR (Physician's Desk Reference) (they're generally available in libraries), and in this doctors reference book it said the following about all anti-depressants. I don't have it in front of me, so I'm not going to put this in quotes, but believe me .. I remember. It said: These medications should not be prescribed to a patient, unless they meet four of eight conditions. I could only identify with one: Stress And .. that was due to employment responsibilities and crap I had to put up with. Also this reference lists the side effects from these anti-depressants: it includes, eye pain!

    I think the doctor's prescribe these meds. for us Fibros, to "help cope with the pain" ... as I've been told by a doctor. Further.. after all the pain(s) we have, it's difficult not to get depressed. The tricyclic anti-depressants are supposed to help with sleep, and perhaps help others, didn't do anything for me except heart palps. That was after a "wash out" from the other depressants. Rheumatologist presribed it again when he diagnosed Fibro, years after the first rounds, and it still didn't help. Couldn't take it. Think it was called amitriptyline. Another name for it, Elavil .. not sure of spelling. The good doc down here now, has me on 12.5 mg. of Paxil CR (supposed to be new and approved and is a low dose)for the present time being. We'll see what he does in upping it.

    Oh, also I read that if you are not depressed before being on these meds, they can cause depressing afterward. What a round robin!


    Please don't give up? Get an SSDI Lawyer, no cost to you now. Document everything and get copies of as many test results, reports, medication records as you can. This "new law" HIPA or HEPA, does not prohibit professionals from giving you the results of your own tests, etc. And don't let them tell you otherwise. If you are depressed, that alone is a qualification for SSDI.

    Attempting to try to go to work, and fail, will not hurt the case.

    Please, please, get that appeal filed within the specified time in your denial letter. Don't get worn down to the point of giving up. It isn't easy, but stick to your guns. You know your body and your depth of depression, far better than they do. When push comes to shove, shove generally wins. Point: if you can't work, you can't work. Just keep shoving 'em!

    Good luck and hang in there and keep at it,
    Tunes