SSDI Is the stress worth it?

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by kitteejo, Jul 10, 2008.

  1. kitteejo

    kitteejo Member

    I have had CFID and FM for five years. Was laid off of work on my fourth year, collected unemployment for six months. I've read that one needs to be off of work for one full year before appling.

    Anyways it will be a year this August. I don't know if I should apply for SSDI or not. Have read so many people being stressed out going through the process, some for years and years.

    The thing is I don't have any other DX but CFID and FM, well of course depression(have had that my whole life). That may hurt my case.

    My question to all of you successfull SSDI lucky people is:
    1.Did you have other DX's that helped you win?
    2.Did anyone out there win with just the CFID & FM DX?
    3.How long did it take you?
    4.Did you hire an attorney?
    5.Before or after you applied?

    Would appreciate any tips as my time is just around the corner to apply.

    Thanks to all that respond.

    [This Message was Edited on 08/15/2008]
  2. pattyholland

    pattyholland New Member

    Hi, I didnt wait no year before I filed, I filed as soon as I couldnt work anymore.

    I do have a number of things wrong with me, But I know fibro can cause alot of things wrong in one person, like
    pain, fatigue, fibro fog, no energy, no strenght,and feel like you the flu 2 weeks out the month and I am sure I messed something.

    I flided 2 years ago, denied the first time.

    Hired a att.

    Just had my hearing date yesterday, And yes it was very stessful.

    I took all my notes with me, so I wouldnt forget, but I cried so much I couldnt even read all of my notes.

    The judge told me I will know within 60 days, why so long? I dont know.

    I guess if I was to get denied , I would do it agian.

    Becasue I know MYSELF how I feel and that I cant work.

    So please dont wait any longer, and dont GIVE UP!!!!

    [This Message was Edited on 07/11/2008]
  3. pattyholland

    pattyholland New Member

    They say you have to have something wrong with you that will last for a year or longer......Like CF & FM their is no cure.

    So therefor you will have it the rest of your life let along a year.

    [This Message was Edited on 07/11/2008]

    BILLCAMO New Member

    In the blue shaded area at the top , there is a title : Social Security Information. There's a lot of good info there.

    Check it out.

    For me , the stress of becoming homeless and broke would have been much more stressful than jumping through the hoops for SSDI !

    And , yes , you can apply for SSDI now. I suggest you get the ball rolling soon , since the odds are , it's going to take some time.

    Blessings ,


    [This Message was Edited on 07/11/2008]
  5. mbofov

    mbofov Active Member

    First, the stress is worth it, in my opinion. I don't know what I would be living on without SSDI. I was very lucky to be approved after only one denial.

    Second, you DON'T have to be off of work for a year before filing. THat's what I had originally thought too. Your doctor just has to say he believes you'll be disabled for at least a year. e.g., if you broke your ankle and will be off of work for 4 weeks only, you wouldn't apply for SSDI. But CFIDS and FM are long-term diseases. Depression is long-term too, so the sooner you apply, the better.

    Third, I think the diagnosis of depression can actually help your case. I've heard it's easier to get approval for depression than CFIDS or FM. The more diagnoses, the better.

    Fourth, expect to get denied the first time around. When I received my denial letter, it felt like a slap in the face. I was so tired and so sick, and just couldn't work. It made me mad, and I didn't want to appeal. I just wanted to drop the whole thing. Luckily I cooled down after a couple of weeks and went ahead with my appeal.

    Fifth, keep copies of everything. SSDI is notorious for "losing" paperwork. I don't know if they do it intentionally or not, but they do it.

    It's mainly just an endurance exercise. Just take one thing at a time, and it won't be that bad.

    Take care --

  6. kitteejo

    kitteejo Member

    Thanks for the quick response. I feel like I could do it now. Will go research so I don't screw it up. My doc is very supportive of the idea of SSDI, he tells me to apply everytime I see him, yesterday as a matter of fact.

    p.s. Is there spell check on the site???
  7. tgeewiz

    tgeewiz Member


    Check out Marti Zavala's post in the SSDI section at the top of the page.

    Especially pay attention to SSR 99-2p (I think that is the number) which she discusses.

    I just had my hearing before a judge 3 weeks ago and am waiting for a decision.

    Best wishes.

    [This Message was Edited on 07/11/2008]
  8. marti_zavala

    marti_zavala Member

    I waited two years before I filed but was too sick to do the questionairre about how the illness affects your daily life. Overwhelming.

    Then I worked on it for a year and re-filed. In the end, I would have started to lose benefits if I had waited much longer.

    I was homeless for a while with a child. Living on part of my mom's retirement, food stamps, no meds, no supplements, awful.

    I got medical help from the indigent health care program in the county I live.

    I had no choice but to file. My savings was used up the first year.

    I was approved on two diagnoses but I only know one was CFIDS. I don't know what the other one was. I was diagnosed with FM AFTER I was approved and several other things. Depressing but at least I know the review won't be a problem.

    I think the other thing was neurological problems which were diagnosed by a neuropsychologist but I am not positive. Really couldn't have been much else because my medical records didn't show much - no back issues (that didn't show up then, but with contrast, they are showing up now), only some high viral and myco levels but not much of anything else.

    In the end, it wasn't that bad (hindsight is 20/20). I suggest that you do it first yourself and if you are denied, then get an attorney or Allsup. You have to make a list of doctors for the attorney and you have to make a list of the things you can't do for them, so you are already done.

    SS office collects the records from your doctors, you don't have to. (THOUGHT - Could it possible that when an attorney contacts your doctor, they become nervous about having to fill out pages and pages of reports or worse yet, have to come to court to testify). Maybe that is why doctors don't like to support patients.

    Sounds like you have a good doctor. You can do it. don't forget the ruling for CFS. It is listed on the irs website.


    [This Message was Edited on 07/11/2008]
  9. Cinderbug

    Cinderbug New Member

    I would be a WHOLE lot more stressed without it!

    I can't work at all and my long term disability insurance failed me. What would I have done?

    To answer your questions:

    1. CFS,FMS, Panic Disorder (came with the CFS)
    2. I imagine the panic disorder is what I got it on, or a big part of it
    3. It took 9 months
    4. I had a paid rep. BIG MISTAKE. I felt I had to do everything behind their back or I wouldn't have gotten it for at least 2 years!
    5. Before...another big mistake...I wouldn't get one until you have to go to court, if then (Just my experience, most people like them)

    [This Message was Edited on 07/13/2008]
  10. findmind

    findmind New Member

    Get hoppin! I believe if you do not apply in the 5 years after leaving work, you are ineligible! I may be wrong, but think not.

    Call 1-800-772-1213 immediately; they will send you papers, or you can fill out the application over the phone.

    Being as you can always add things after they turn you down, don't worry about getting everything to them immediately; just get the application in at once, please!

    You may put yourself in lifetime jeopardy if you are eligible and do not apply!

  11. campbeck97

    campbeck97 New Member

    I filed in 2003 and after being turned down twice i was about ready to say the heck with it all but after thinking about the long term effects and the additional money I would be giving them it made me angry and I continued on. Here it is 2008 and I just recevied my back pay which was a nice lump sum and now I can do away with my high priced health ins payment because i have received medicare part A&B plus i'm gettiing a part F for picking up most all cost that medicare doesnt cover and part D for prescription drugs so will have excellent coverage. yes it is a long strung out process but hang in there . I belive we deserve it . Good luck to you and keep us posted. God Bless
  12. dafoefan

    dafoefan New Member

    I was procrastinating for a couple of years due to the stress.

    I received a recommendation from someone for Allsup. They did everything. I would highly recommend them, especially if the whole ordeal is just too much stress.

    To answer your questions:

    1.Did you have other DX's that helped you win? I think panic disorders and depression was big. But I never knew how or why I won. I found I had won by opening my checking account and finding a huge deposit of backpay.

    2.Did anyone out there win with just the CFID DX? N/A

    3.How long did it take you? Just under 6 mos.

    4.Did you hire an attorney? Allsup, Inc., is not a group of attorneys, they are former Social Security workers, which I believe gives them the leg-up on proper wording.

    5.Before or after you applied? I hired them before--they did everything, and they only receive payment on your backpay and it is limited by the Government.

    HTH, Lisa
  13. mjwarchol

    mjwarchol New Member

    You only have to wait 5 months to file. I filed 10/05 after quiting work 4/05. I was denied the first two times, but won at my judicial appeal. I used Allsup from the beginning.

    Your question, is it worth it is a definate yes! You will get that money for the rest of your life. Also, after 2 years you will get Medicare. This can be a big help if you don't have insurance or have lousy insurance.

    Also, the amount of meney you get monthly if you get SSDI is more than the amount you get if you retire and collect at 62. Even though it may take a while to win your case, the amount you will collect is frozen during the process. If you were not working and paying into it your monthly benefit would decrease over time.

    I filed for CFS,FM,Chronic Back Pain, Severe Pronation,Depression. In my hearing the pronation is what the ME focused on, and the problems that caused for me.

    It may be stressful, but living life without that income would be more stressful. Good luck

    M J
  14. Gumbo

    Gumbo New Member

    When you hired a rep, what exactly was it that you did behind their back that you felt helped you get the S.S.Disability?

  15. lilac123

    lilac123 New Member


    Just a quick note here. After my denial(s), and hitting dead ends and a lawyer who didn't help at all, I wrote an email to my local congressman's office and received an imediate reply. I corresponded by phone and letters with someone in the office called a "Constiuent Specialist". He was so helpful and I was able to vent my situation via letters and he totally helped me get approved.

    I have written about it here so if you do a search of my username you should be able to find it.

    Best of luck to you and hang in there. It was not "worth" the stress but absolutely necessary for survival when I could no longer work.

    Peace and Prayers,
  16. deliarose

    deliarose New Member


    Much cheaper, and they are incentivised to help you win sooner rather than later because they don't get a % of your backpay.

    I used one and got approved on reconsideration .. ie before a hearing.

    The woman I used is listed on this site

    She does SSDI & LTD.

  17. kitteejo

    kitteejo Member

    Thanks everyone for your advise.

    I did call Allsup and they sent me the forms to sign but my doctor wants me to use a disability attorney friend of his, so I'm going to meet him in two weeks. If I like him I will go with him because he'll work with my doctor on documenting(I think). If I don't like him than I will go with Allsup.

    I thought that either place could only get 25% or no more than $5300. An I wrong about that? I was reading Disinissues this am and someone said her useless attorney got $14,000. She was very upset. There must be a trick in this that I'm not aware of.