SSDI - Social Security Disability Testimonies - Add yours

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by marti_zavala, Jul 29, 2008.

  1. marti_zavala

    marti_zavala Member

    Hi everyone,
    It seems like more and more people are getting approved. I think that is really great.

    I would like to ask anyone who has been approved to add a post with their testimony. I think it would be helpful to those here who are struggling to apply or who have applied and are struggling with the wait.

    edited: I changed the title and the instructions to just post the testimony here rather than the sticky at the top of the board -as suggested - that way all approvals are in one place and you don't have to wade through the multiple pages of sticky. Thanks guys!

    edited: I added another question - how long did it take from application to approval and gave each question a number.

    Some helpful things to know - if you are uncomfortable with any of these questions - just skip the question. Any info would be helpful.

    1. Did you use an attorney/Allsup or go it alone?
    2. Were you approved on the record or after a hearing?
    3. How many times were you denied?
    4. Did you have a doctor's general attitude of support?
    5. Did you have a doctor's help with a letter or report?
    6. Which impairments did you get disabilty for?
    7. How many other health issues do you have?
    8. How far back did your back pay go?
    9. When you were approved?
    10. How old were you?
    11. What state do you live in?
    12. How long did it take from application to approval?

    I think just seeing the number of testimonies will give support and encouragement to those still struggling.

    Hope this helps,
    Marti

    [This Message was Edited on 07/29/2008]
    [This Message was Edited on 08/01/2008]
    [This Message was Edited on 09/10/2008]
  2. slevah

    slevah New Member

    I don't want to step on toes, but I think (since this is just starting) it would be VERY helpful it the responses were posted in a NEW Social Security sticky... named something (whatever you want) "Social Security Outcomes". As it stands, they are being added at the end of the already long SS sticky. This would keep the "results" separate and easier to glean (especially on those brain fog days!)from the general information. Thoughts?

    Thanks for listening.

    Slevah
  3. marti_zavala

    marti_zavala Member

    slevah,
    I think that is a great idea. I had thought of it but then thought I was being presumptiuous (sp?)

    I will see if I can contact one of the moderators and see if they would agree.

    Marti
  4. marti_zavala

    marti_zavala Member

    board is moving fast today.

    M-----
  5. jmq

    jmq New Member

    Thank you for posting this....

    for those of us that are still in the process...it will really help .

    jmq
  6. marti_zavala

    marti_zavala Member

    jmq
    My pleasure.

    Bumping,
    M-----
  7. mjwarchol

    mjwarchol New Member

    1. I used Allsup

    2. I was approved at the hearing. The judge announced it then.

    3. Denied 2 times. I filed 10/05, denied, filed appeal,denied again. Got my hearing 5/08, approved back to my first day off of work (minus the 5 months) so back pay from 10/05 through present.

    4. My doc was very supportive. He tried to talk me in to filing before, but I wanted to keep trying to work. For the record I used to work with him in one office bur only for about 2 months. Then started to use him as my doc about a year later.

    5. He wrote a fantastic letter. 4 pages long. Cited SS Ruling 99-2P (?)In my hearing the ME stated how great the letter was and he agreed with everything in it. We knew within the first two minutes of his testimony that we won the case. The judge also cited how great the letter was. He likened a lot of my problems to those that have been approved by SS. Like my fatigue is comprable to someone with MS, etc.

    6. In this order Fibro,CFS, severe back pain, status post knee surgeries, severe pronation and depression "so severe that you are unable to perform any work existing in significant numbers in the national economy"

    7. see above

    8. see above

    9. see above

    10. Arizona, and I am 56 as of this month.

    Good luck, don't give up hope!

    M J
  8. Cinderbug

    Cinderbug New Member

    1. Did you use an attorney/Allsup or go it alone? ..paid rep --big mistake in my opinion...they actual tryed to keep it going to the judge stage. They get more $ that way.

    2. Were you approved on the record or after a hearing? -- approved in the reconsideration stage

    3. How many times were you denied? --- once

    4. Did you have a doctor's general attitude of support? --- in a whimpy way, yes.

    5. Did you have a doctor's help with a letter or report? ---yes, with my help

    6. Which impairments did you get disabilty for? --- They didn't say. They listed them all...CFS. FMS, panic disorder

    7. How many other health issues do you have? ...CFS, FMS. panic disorder, IBS

    8. How far back did your back pay go? To the day I got sick, about 1 1/2 years

    9. When you were approved? May of 2007, 9 months after I applied

    10. What state do you live in? ... Florida


    I am sorry to say you may have to remove my post if I can't write it here because I find that SSDI sticky WAY to difficult to navigate and very confusing.

    Cindy


    [This Message was Edited on 07/31/2008]
  9. Honora88

    Honora88 Member

    1) Went through an attorney. Looking back, should have done it myself since I got approved the 2nd round.

    2) denied once , went through second round.

    3) She did support me initially but then refused to write a letter to SS.

    6) Got approved due to CFID brain fog. They didn't care about my other symptoms only brain fog which deemd me unreliable to work.

    7) This was my only health issue.

    8) approved a few months ago two years from application.

    9) live in Boston, MA
  10. labrat

    labrat New Member

    SSD testimony

    1. Did you use an attorney or go it alone? I filed on my own, was denied, and hired an attorney at the reconsideration stage.

    2. Were you approved on record or at hearing? at hearing

    3. How many times were you denied? 2

    4. Did you have a doctor's general attitude of support? One dr did support me, not sure about the others.

    5. Did you have a doctor's help with a letter or report? Yes, one dr wrote me a letter, though it wasn't very good in my opinion and it cost me $300. My psychiatrist filled out the RFC form that the lawyer sent him which I think helped a great deal.

    6. Which impairments did you get disability for?depression, anxiety, social anxiety, some other mental impairments.

    7. How many other health issues do you have? CFS which is why I am disabled

    8. How far back did your pay go? 6/04

    9. When were you approved? 4/05

    10. What state do you live in? MN and was age 39 when approved

    I am posting this here because I don't think people will wade through all the posts in the SS sticky to find these.

    Tracy

  11. marti_zavala

    marti_zavala Member

    Probably a better idea to post on a new thread. I will change the title in the first post.

    Here is my testimony (short version). I have a longer testimony in the SSD sticky at the top of the board.

    1. Did you use an attorney/Allsup or go it alone?
    I did it alone. I filed just to open a file then I was going to start interviewing attorneys. I was approved before I got very far but I had decided to use Allsup.

    2. Were you approved on the record or after a hearing?
    I was approved on the record 60 days after applying. (Praise be to God! - we were in dire straights)

    3. How many times were you denied?
    None but I had filed some time before but never got past the initial application.

    4. Did you have a doctor's general attitude of support?
    No and don't even get me started.

    5. Did you have a doctor's help with a letter or report?
    No but I did get him (through his PA who was helpful) to sign a form regarding temporary disability.

    6. Which impairments did you get disabilty for?
    Two - Chronic Fatigue syndrome and I don't know the other one.

    7. How many other health issues do you have?
    At the time, I had high EBV and CMV titres. Mycoplasma. Post herpetic neuralgia (from shingles), chronic pancreatitis.

    Since then, I have been diagnosed with Fibromyalgia, Degenerative Disc disease, Bulging disc pressing spinal cord. Some other stuff but drawing a blank. I had these then but had not gotten an official diagnosis.

    Very little testing, very little lab work. I failed a neuropsychological exam and I feel that helped but I have not gotten the records to find out what she actually found.

    8. How far back did your back pay go?
    To June 2005 (as did my son's dependent benefits)

    9. When you were approved? How old were you?
    October 2006 I was 45 when approved.

    10. What state do you live in?
    Texas


    All the best,
    Marti

  12. marti_zavala

    marti_zavala Member

    07/30/08 09:19 PM

    Reposted here with permission from kking0412

    my SSD experiance 07/29/08 12:26 PM

    1. Did you use an attorney/Allsup or go it alone?
    first time I went it alone and was denied. got lawyer.

    2. Were you approved on the record or after a hearing?
    after a hearing which took forever to get

    3. How many times were you denied?
    once

    4. Did you have a doctor's general attitude of support?
    yes, 3 of them plus 2 SSD dr's

    5. Did you have a doctor's help with a letter or report?
    yes, my 3 doctors, God bless them. did a great job.

    6. Which impairments did you get disabilty for?
    chronic pain, chronic Lyme, fibromyalgia

    7. How many other health issues do you have?
    CFS/fibro/EBV and CHronic Lyme. will be testing for co-infectants when the Medicare comes thru.

    8. How far back did your back pay go?
    October 21, 2004 baby!

    9. When you were approved?
    got my letter this past Saturday, the 26th. hearing was 12/19/07. this was after I contacted Sen McCaskill's office. write your elected officials!

    10. What state do you live in? MO



    [This Message was Edited on 07/31/2008]
  13. marti_zavala

    marti_zavala Member

    Reposted here with Gramms permission: (before these questions were formulated)

    gramms 07/16/08 01:02 PM
    So happy for you. Now you can focus on your health.

    I appreciate your willingness to help others. Perhaps, when you are up to it, you can write a post in the sticky at the top of the page, outlining what you did, did you use a lawyer, what diagnoses were you approved for, that kind of stuff.

    All the best,
    Marti



    Hope this helps! 07/16/08 01:24 PM
    In reply to some of your questions: I did choose to use a disability lawyer. I gave it a lot of thought & wanted someone to rely on. I was lucky. He was a referal from my son's lawyer & he only handles disability. It took nearly 2 yrs. (which is what I was told). During that time I was refused twice & appealed twice. So the next step was to request a hearing. During the last 3 months of waiting, I also contacted my congressman. He sent my name to the disability office with a letter of my situation. I'm not sure whether this helped or not. My disabilities are FM, hip bursitis, IBS, RLS, elbow tendonitis, carpel tunnel & plantar facitis. (wow). The judges questioning was very brief & it was a woman judge. My lawyer told me that he never lost a disability case in front of her. (wow). I'm still overwhelmed with the thought that I really, really won. Good luck to all. I hope this message helps some of you.

    Gramms
    [This Message was Edited on 08/01/2008]
  14. marti_zavala

    marti_zavala Member

    Hi,

    Sorry Marti, but I copied what you asked into here so as to not have to keep clicking back & forth because not only did I forget your questions but also my partly-brain-formed replies faded in that very short click-time.

    Here's yours:
    1. Did you use an attorney/Allsup or go it alone?
    2. Were you approved on the record or after a hearing?
    3. How many times were you denied?
    4. Did you have a doctor's general attitude of support?
    5. Did you have a doctor's help with a letter or report?
    6. Which impairments did you get disabilty for?
    7. How many other health issues do you have?
    8. How far back did your back pay go?
    9. When you were approved? How old were you?
    10. What state do you live in?

    Mine:
    1. No attorney nor Allsup. I didn't know such people or places would help. Perhaps attorneys or Allsup either didn't exist in San Francisco CA then or dr didn't know to suggest I go there.

    2. Approved on record due to a great SocSecDis worker who wrote on the paperwork in large red letters "This woman needs help NOW."

    3. Was never denied. I hear automatic denial is common now and the ill person has to try again and again and go through expensive, exhausting, and seemingly endless re-tries and super-expensive visits to lawyers to get help. Opinion: that's awful when one considers the sick person who might not have it together re energy or mental acuity to re-apply.

    4.I don't feel I had dr's attitude of support; he had me tested for RA and said sed rates were bad but that's all he did.

    5. If dr support consists of him telling me to go right away to SSI and SSDI --- the Bad Conditions, IMO, were severely arthritic at the time due to weeks of exposure to cleaning compounds ---yes,I had slight dr support but no letter to carry to SSI/SSDI.(Dr scripted daily mega doses acetylic calyc (sp?) acid tabs, same-same aspirin, I believe, but that was before I knew large doses aspirin burns holes in my belly/ bowel).

    6. At the time all I knew was that I had helped with a cleaning-out of a filthy house and that caused my GLOVED hands to swell like catcher's mitts. Of course breathing in the fumes from the cleaning prducts didn't help but dr and I didn't peg the problems to inhaling cleaning products to sudden illness; he brainflashed RA but didn't test for anything else.

    Side note: I also noticed exhuaustion at that time but didn't mention it to dr because I thought that the marathon cleaning-up job was cause of exhaustion. Little did I know then...

    7. I'll never know if there were other sick-conditions running rampant.

    8. Retro funds went back to date of filing for assistance. I suspect this is because the approval came pretty fast for both SSI and SSDI. I've heard that people whose cases take years to resolve don't get retro funds to date of filing. BUT: it does seem that funds now are pegged to one year of employment before having to go through such help agencies such as Binion and Binion and this Allsup I never heard of much before now.

    SocSecDis sent two retro checks because they found employement I'd forgoteen about. Came to between 3 and 4 thousand $$.

    9. Approved around 30 years ago. 30 years was also approximate age.

    10. Got SocSecDis approval in San Francisco CA. I understand other cities and states have differing rules re approval.

    Hope I haven't messed up the order of your questions and my answers. Mind is just "a bit" impaired becase of medications used at night.

    Lea.
  15. Susan07

    Susan07 New Member

    1. Did you use an attorney/Allsup or go it alone?
    no attorney - filed online

    2. Were you approved on the record or after a hearing?
    approved without even a meeting

    3. How many times were you denied?
    0

    4. Did you have a doctor's general attitude of support?
    yes - longterm internist

    5. Did you have a doctor's help with a letter or report?
    he completed a disability form

    6. Which impairments did you get disabilty for?
    fibromyalgia, arthralgia, and fatigue

    7. How many other health issues do you have?
    planters faciitis, carpal tunnel, tarsal tunnel,
    odor and light sensitivity

    8. How far back did your back pay go?
    none needed, approved and went into effect
    after 6 months of last day worked

    9. When you were approved? How old were you?
    2006 - 54 y/o

    10. What state do you live in?
    Texas

    I was very fortunate with SSD but was unable to get LTD, my fibrofog messed me up on a date I didn't catch - sigh!

    [This Message was Edited on 08/02/2008]
  16. Leaknits

    Leaknits New Member

    Hi,

    Marti, thank you very much for moving my reply to here where it belongs.

    I cannot for the life of me (such as this life is, lol) figure out how to Reply to any but the first post in a thread.

    If I try to send a note to some other poster, clicking on Reply at the lower right of their words brings up the first post which they, of course, did not write.
    So I came up with the brilliant (?) idea to open a Post Topic blank, add the poster's name and the general subject, write a response and fire it off to PH M E/Fibromyalgia.

    Someone here, quite a while back, explained how to work through that process properly and have a response to a query posted after the first, second, third, etc., post appear on the proper page and following the post I wished to answer.

    I should have filed the info and did not do that.

    Thank you in advance.
    Lea.
  17. Susan07

    Susan07 New Member

    bdtmu516 answer to your question: "you didnt have to go to local ssdi office and fill out papers?

    you just took care of everyting on line?
    without lawyer or allsup?"

    Yes, to no lawyer, no allsup (not sure what that is).

    Did everything on line.

    Visited SSD office to turn in paperwork so they could copy birth certificate. My file was about a 1/2 thick of backup I wanted to give them.

    I received my paperwork back because they scanned it all in and mailed it back to me!

    Back up included receipts from doctor's offices with diagnosis.

    They then mailed me 17 forms to complete (sign) giving them permission to get all doctors involved records.

    Some people say if you are over 55 it is easier to get approved - I don't know if that was my case or not.

    I was very careful in completing forms - answering the question asked! Detailing how each pain etc affected each part of my job. It took at least 6 weeks to complete, I did a little each day.

    And I had a desk job which I thought I could do forever...sigh. But it became overwhelming with the brain fog and just trying to even get to work.



    [This Message was Edited on 08/03/2008]
  18. Hootie1

    Hootie1 New Member

    1. Did you use an attorney/Allsup or go it alone?
    applied alone and then hired atty after first denial
    2. Were you approved on the record or after a hearing?
    approved by letter before the hearing date was set
    3. How many times were you denied?
    once - no recon stage
    4. Did you have a doctor's general attitude of support?
    Yes- rheumy and psych
    5. Did you have a doctor's help with a letter or report?
    Report filled out and sent to Atty - 2nd time around
    6. Which impairments did you get disabilty for?
    Depression, anxiety disorder, NOS and Fibromyalgia (20 CFR 404.1520(c)).
    7. How many other health issues do you have?
    UCTD, CFS, Fibro, DDD, herniated disks, sleep apnea, IBS, depression, anxiety
    8. How far back did your back pay go?
    I stopped work on Dec 15, 2006 and they approved it for this date
    9. When you were approved? How old were you?
    45
    10. What state do you live in?
    Pennsylvania
    [This Message was Edited on 08/03/2008]
    [This Message was Edited on 08/24/2008]


    **** I'm editing this message to add in that I was approved
    and made changes accordingly.[This Message was Edited on 08/30/2008]
    [This Message was Edited on 08/30/2008]
  19. padre

    padre New Member


    1. My pensions board did not want to pay total disability amount so they hired Allsup.
    2. I was approved on the record.
    3. Received it the first time.
    4. Doctors (3) believed I should receive it. I had another illness as well, but FMS was major complaint.
    5. Doctors all wrote letters.
    6. FMS and vasculopathy.
    7. Above
    8. To the day I stopped working, but had to repay my pension board.
    9. 4 years ago. I was 61.
    10. California
  20. marti_zavala

    marti_zavala Member

    Due to the storm in the Gulf, I have not had internet since Sunday.

    I am at the library for a little bit. I have seen some new responses to disability but have not pasted them in here. Will do so when I get back online.

    All the best,
    Marti