Janet...didn't you post SSDI info?

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by DDD, Mar 27, 2008.

  1. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    I remember an "unsanctioned" site being posted about ss disability. I also remember "saving it". Where is it? Good Grief....I don't know.

    easy child/difficult child's claim is being questioned because, evidently, he is not having seizures as a result of his medication controling the problem WTH!

    I'm trying to explore Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)'s and alcoholism as determiners for SSDI. I
    think you are the one who posted the government site and the site where people posted suggestions/information.

    Would you mind sharing again?? DDD
  2. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Let me try to remember.

    I probably posted it over in that other forum but I think it is something like Disinisues.


    If you have bipolar disorder, major depression, phobias, agoraphobia, Tourette Syndrome, obsessions, compulsions, or panic attacks, you must prove that you have problems in at least two of the four areas of functioning.

    If you have somatoform disorder or a personality disorder, Social Security requires you to have serious problems in three of the four areas.


    Daily living skills
    Activities of daily living include cooking, cleaning, and laundry. It includes getting dressed, brushing your teeth, going to the grocery store, and paying your rent on time.

    If you need reminders to do those kinds of tasks, or just don't do them, you have "marked restriction of activities of daily living." That is important in proving that your mental illness prevents you from working.

    Social functioning
    Social functioning means knowing how to say the right thing, and when. Evictions, firings, fear of strangers, and social isolation are important signs that you can't work.

    Are you unable to start up a conversation? Do you make rude remarks-- or "clam up" and don't speak to others? Can you get along okay with family, neighbors, and the landlord? Can you get things done with a group of people? How do you act with people in authority? Those social skills are necessary to work, no matter what the job.

    (c) Concentration, persistence, or pace
    If you can't complete tasks in a timely manner, that shows you have a deficiency in your "pace." Lots of people start a project and don't finish it, especially with a hobby. But if you start important projects and never finish them, because your mind wanders, then you have a significant deficiency in concentration and you can't work.

    (d) Episodes of deterioration or decompensation
    Decompensation means that you withdraw from the situation when you feel stress, or perhaps you "blow up" all of a sudden when things aren't going right.

    Do you go into a tailspin sometimes, and lose your cool? Does this happen even when you are trying to be on your best behavior? Any exacerbation of your signs and symptoms is an "episode" that keeps you from working. Having episodes like that, repeatedly, is a sure sign that you can't function at work.


    This is what I can find. I think either disabilitysecrets or the msn group have really good info.
  3. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    Thanks Janet. I think it was disability secrets that you shared recently. easy child/difficult child is not capable of working on a regular basis and taking care of the daily chores of living alone. on the other hand, since he walks and talks and can present well...I think we may not be in the best position for approval.

    I'll check out the info you shared. Thanks. DDD
  4. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    DDD...if you saw me on any given day when I wasnt in dire pain, you could say the same things about me. I CAN walk for short periods and obviously I can speak pretty well. The important thing is to have doctors documenting the disability.

    I did have to go to a hearing to get mine but when they asked me questions such as if I could work doing (whatever...one of the things they asked me was a toll collector) I was honest and said Im sure I could...for a certain number of hours but that I couldnt tell them in advance what my "good" hours were going to be. Some days I am doing well from mid morning till early afternoon...others its late afternoon till about 8. I just cant say on any type of an advanced time period how I am going to feel. They seemed happy with that answer.
  5. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    You've nailed it on the head. That is exactly how it is with the Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) symptoms. He has times when he really could work but he can't maintain his attention and focus long enough to work for someone and he may be great one day and not with it the next. DDD
  6. DDD,

    I worked for a period of time as a Social Security disability adjudicator at the state level. I can tell you that Janet's information is completely correct.

    I would not use the alcoholism issue at all. Social Security stopped allowing disabilities attributed to alcohol or drug abuse some years back due to some extremely negative media coverage. I think it may have originated with a 60 minutes expose. Abuse of alcohol and/or drugs is now used to deny cases- no matter how serious other dual disabilities may be.

    The residuals of his Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) are much more likely to be helpful to his case. A recent neuropsychological evaluation that addresses issues like "persistence and pace" will help enormously. Your doctor can complete one of SS's mental functional capacity form to discuss these issues. Having a number of daily activity questionnaires completed by people who know your son is also helpful. Any evidence that shows social disfunctioning (number of jobs, length of jobs, firings, etc) needs to be included. It is important to spend a lot of time on the questionnaires and include all the details.

    Young people (in SS's view, that's under 49) almost always end up at a hearing to be awarded benefits. Having your own medical witnesses present at the hearing can make a huge difference. SS has its own physicians on contract who evaluate by reviewing submitted records only. They do not see or interview the person applying for disability, but they may be called to the hearing to testify as an expert witness. This is why it is vital to get your ducks in a row and present extremely thorough evidence.

    Don't be discouraged by an initial denial of benefits. The majority of initial applications by younger individuals are denied . As a young person, one either needs to "meet a listing" or be a death's door to qualify at that level. The SS administrative law judges have more leeway to award benefits .
  7. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    Thanks for the info. On the further information request the emphasis is on seizures (number, frequency, type, manifestation etc.) and then...there is a question that is there like an afterthought. How much alcohol do you drink?

    I am a truthful person. I am not "out to get something for nothing" etc. but if alcoholism deep sixes applications..that is a problem question. The absolutely true valid answer is "I do not know how much easy child/difficult child drinks as due to his short term memory problems he does not recall previous drinks when being offered an alcoholic beverage." Yep, that is evidently true most often. on the other hand there are nights when he buys a bottle with the full intention of drinking the WHOLE thing...and he does.

    The booze impacts the brain cells due to the Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI). The after effect of drinking to excess is never distinguishable from a "black out".

    His impulsiveness is extreme due to the frontal lobe damage. His cognitive deficits prevent mature analysis. He memory issues add to his inappropriate choices.

    I can barely sort through it myself and make sense of the picture. It is going to be more than challenging to present it. If he sets out to do the laundry for the family........he never gets past load two. If he comes to my store to help out...he can't maintain his focus for twenty minutes at a time and has to walk around, have a cigarette, watch traffic.

    He IS disabled but how to get his qualified is the 64 million dollar question. I guess I'll just do my best and be prepared to reapply if turned down.. Thanks everyone. DDD
  8. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    DDD...do you have a lawyer for him? If you want I can recommend the lawyer that I used. He works nationally and is based in Atlanta. I know he did an excellent job for me and I would feel good to recommend him to someone else.

    The cost of the lawyer comes out of the end of the disability award. You dont pay upfront. The most they can get is $5300 or 1/4 of the award.

    Just say the word and I will find the name and number again.