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Leptin
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Application for disability

Discussion in 'Finances, Work, and Disability' started by larabond3, Feb 3, 2010.

  1. larabond3

    larabond3 Guest

    This site is great! I am really hoping someone can help me.I am going to try and apply for disability...I am on long term disability at work.I am only able to work part time.I am currently in default and have claimed bankruptcy..According to my income tax I only take home 1500 per month because my LTD is not included.Do I have to claim that when I file for Disablity with the government? My income is over 2000 with my LTD and if they look at that they may deny me.Even with this amount I am not able to pay what is expected of my student loans...they are over 50000! I will never be able to pay them back at 100 per month. Please help...
  2. Knackered

    Knackered Guest

    You're lucky, I live in 90 a week here in the UK, that's $576 a month.
  3. caledonia

    caledonia

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    Assuming you are applying for SSDI, income from interest, other LTD and assets are not a consideration. However, income from working is. You are currently over the SGA limit. SGA means Substantial Gainful Activity, which is about $930 a month.

    Generally lawyers will recommend that you stop working altogether when you apply for SSDI. The reason is that you will have to prove that "if you can work part time, why can't you work full time", which is a lot harder to prove than "I can't work at all, therefore I can't work full time".

    I have heard of some people who have gotten approved while working part time (below SGA). I have also heard of people who work part time for cash so it won't be reported. Not to cheat the system, but to survive while they wait 2-3 years to get approved.

    I recently read of somebody on one of the boards who had their student loans absolved because of disability. In other words, they don't have to pay them back.

    The next question is, how reliable is your LTD? Are they going to cut you off in two years? Are they requiring you to apply for SSDI? You should look at your Plan Description and see what the terms are. Also try to get a feel for how your company has treated other PWC's.

    The next question is, how confident are you that you will be able to maintain your part time schedule for years to come?

    I would also get an opinion from the Disinissues Yahoo Group and talk to a couple of lawyers.

    I would say, you are actually doing pretty good right now, but potentially in between a rock and a hard place in the future, depending on the LTD and your health.

    In any case, you should be aggressively cutting expenses - get that student loan absolved, move to a cheaper place, cut off cable TV, quit eating out, etc.

    Check out Your Money or Your Life by Joe Dominguez and Vicki Robin for detailed info on how to do this.
  4. creekfeet

    creekfeet Sockfeet

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    As a single mom, I tried so hard to keep working, to support myself and my two kids. I pushed myself beyond endurance. I fell gradually back to an average of two hours of work per week, and that work of less than acceptable quality. I was forced to give up. I made $4400 last year. I applied for disability and am still waiting. For now we live on public assistance. I'd like to buy my younger kid some clothes because she only has one pair of jeans that fit, but I have to save up for a new tank of propane or we'll have no heat. Disability is meant for people in this sort of situation, yet we have to beg and fight to get it.
  5. caledonia

    caledonia

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    Very important! If you can no longer work full time and your doctor says that will last for at least a year, you are eligible for SSDI. As it takes 2-3 years to get approved, the earlier you get started the better.

    I wish I could inform people about this before they try working part time thinking that they'll be able to sustain that and they don't need to apply for disability. This darn illness is so tricky, it makes you think you can pull it off, but in so many cases you can't. Plus most of the time people can't get diagnosed, so they have no information about what to expect from the illness.

    It's a big catch-22 and unfortunately, most of us have to learn about all this stuff the hard way.
  6. gracenote

    gracenote All shall be well . . .

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    creekfeet,

    Do you have a lawyer familiar with CFS and SSDI? If not, you will most likely need one. You will also need a doctor that knows how to supply the right kind of information in the way that SSDI understands. From my own experience and from what I've heard from others (in California), it is common to be turned down twice for SSDI and then have to go in person before a judge. Having a lawyer and a doctor who understand the system is critical. You will not need to pay the lawyer upfront.
  7. creekfeet

    creekfeet Sockfeet

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    Yes, I have a lawyer who has lots of experience with CFS and SSDI and thank heavens, she's doing the case for ... what's it called... fog brain... anyway, I don't have to pay her up front. She gets a stated cut of my first SSI payment. She got my kid's case approved on the first try but SSI sent me to such the stupidest psych evaluation in the world for mine, and they screwed it up. Hopefully better luck on this try.
  8. creekfeet

    creekfeet Sockfeet

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    Yup, that's how it went for me. Undiagnosed for over a year, so I just kept pushing myself, wondering what was wrong with me. It makes me sad for all the people walking around with it still undiagnosed. Wish we could tell them.
  9. gracenote

    gracenote All shall be well . . .

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    I'm so glad you have a good lawyer.

    I have yet to hear of a single person who was not sent for a "stupid" psych evaluation. It continues to surprise me how completely inadequate for this particular job these persons are. The notes written in my friend's file after her evaluation were outrageous. I don't use words like stupid and outrageous often, but they apply here. Mine told me if I took Prozac I would be fine. If only . . .
  10. creekfeet

    creekfeet Sockfeet

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    It guess we were amazingly lucky, then, with the psychiatrist who saw my child. He had chronic illness as a kid himself so understood something of the scenario that others might not get, and he seemed to be fairly in-the-know about ME/CFS. Our only regret was that my kid couldn't continue to be seen by him, because of our lack of ability to pay. So, now you'll have to say that you have only heard of one person whose psych eval was great. By the way, this guy was in your general area. Offices in Santa Rosa and San Rafael, I think.

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