Spondylitis Association of America
Posted By: funchefchick Here's a new one with SSA . . - 09/19/14 06:53 AM
I started working on my SSDI application months and months ago. I was trying to file a *thorough* application with supporting statements and evidence from my doctors and whatnot to try to reduce the chances of an immediate denial.

Eventually it got to be TOO MUCH. I have so dang many medical records that it became overwhelming. I finally handed over all of my records to my favorite attorney to have them complete and submit a thorough application for me.

In the meantime I was contacted by my local SSA office. Because I had secured a re-entry number for my application I guess they logged that I had an application in progress. My local SSA person contacted me to see if I needed assistance completing the application. I told them no, I was still working on it, but thanks.

Two weeks ago my attorney's office submitted my completed application. Hooray! Now it is just a waiting game. Ho hum. I was just beginning to think that I should look up the exact date so that I could figure out roughly when I should expect to hear something when . . .

My cell phone rang today. I missed the call because I was out in my yard. It rang again 4 minutes later. And again 10 minutes after that. I got the 3rd call and it was the rep from the local SSA office asking for a chat.

He asked me if I still had the re-entry number for my SSDI application. I said yes, I did, and why?

He said that he had accidentally DELETED MY ENTIRE SSDI APPLICATION. The one with a TON of records entered, with tons of additional doctors' statements, with medical appointment history and medication history and just . . . it amounts to hundreds of pages. He. JUST. DELETED. ALL OF IT. :-O How is that even possible?!

He told me to get online and resubmit my application. I told him that my attorney had filed it on my behalf since I had found the whole process overwhelming. He said I could sign in and get online now and he would 'walk me through it to resubmit it'. So . . . his coaching help over the phone would get me to replace the dozens of hours of work my attorney and his paralegal have done to upload and submit records and docs and some published articles to support my case? WHAT IS HE EVEN TALKING ABOUT?!

I called my attorney's paralegal and they are going to get in touch with the SSA rep and resubmit the whole package.

I just can't even believe it. I am flabbergasted. My attorney can recover; they kept a PDF hard copy of every page which they submitted. But if they make the paralegal actually re-do the data entry, page by page?? It is painful to contemplate.

Let this be a warning to anyone else submitting an SSDI application: keep a copy of every page you submit, as you complete the data entry. Because your local SSA representative may DELETE IT. 0_o
Posted By: Ken Delano Re: Here's a new one with SSA . . - 09/19/14 11:19 AM
Similar situation to what happened to me. When I applied for my Disability Annuity I had to also apply for Social Security. I received a letter from them stating that I had in fact applied. My Disability from work would not have been granted with out proof that I had applied with the SSA. Many months later (20?) I finally called to find out why I still had not received anything else from them. SSA employees were unable to locate any claim. But for the letter I had they would have had me file with a new date. I was able to get all of the back pay. But like you, I wondered how this was possible. They should not be able to delete an entire file. Make corrections yes. Sad to see after 9 years it is still happening.
Posted By: Rich Feingold Re: Here's a new one with SSA . . - 10/20/14 04:27 PM
Technology still has glitches.

Posted By: funchefchick Re: Here's a new one with SSA . . - 04/12/15 07:12 PM
Circling back - the paralegal worked with the contact and recovered all of the documents. My application was submitted successfully. In February I got a letter saying an exam with a psychologist of their choosing was required, so I went and complied. A few weeks later I got my denial letter saying that while the records clearly - and thoroughly - state that I have both Undifferentiated Spondyloarthropathy and Fibromyalgia, that I should still be able to perform a sedentary job. I had a ton of records all documenting extreme fatigue, pain, memory issues, focus issues, extreme sensitivity to light, noise, and temperature, and barometric pressure.

I have an attorney lined up to manage my appeal but the approval rates in Seattle at the ALJ level are averaging at 9% and 11%, respectively. It's just brutal.

I'm trying to complete the appeal questionnaire now but I am just at a loss. What else can I possibly tell the SSA that I haven't already? And with at 10% chance at appeal what's the point? I have no idea what to write down.

Between this and my private disability insurance just blatantly manufacturing fake evidence to deny my benefits - and with bad faith claims disallowed under ERISA - I am just defeated and overwhelmed while I wait for my lawsuit in federal court to *someday* roll around. With no income for nearly a year now and another year to go for the suit I am left wondering just how my country can treat disabled people this way. :-(
Posted By: Banana Re: Here's a new one with SSA . . - 01/26/16 04:08 PM
When they denied me, they said I could be a clerk at stores. I provided my ankle x-rays proving I could not stand for long periods AND my hand x-rays showing I can't manage a register for long either.

Was approved 3 months later. So show proof disputing. I can see how fatigue would be hard to show, but you must have x-rays too.

Posted By: funchefchick Re: Here's a new one with SSA . . - 03/14/16 09:02 PM
I completely forgot to circle back here! Some miracles happened. I'm not even kidding - MIRACLES.

My SSDI attorney filed my appeal last summer. The appeal survival rates in Seattle are still between 9% and 11%. I didn't have much hope, but you still have to play along with the process, you know?

I WON MY APPEAL. :-O I don't know how, I don't know why - but the judge awarded me SSDI benefits last August. After waiting to hear something for months and months, my attorney suddenly got wired their $6,000 fee for my SSDI work. The paralegal called me to see if I'd heard anything - I hadn't - and it took several more months before I started receiving benefits, received the award letter, and finally got the back-pay amount wired to my account. I must say the whole process is shockingly inefficient. But for the love of all that is holy, I survived the appeals process. ! (Ironically, a dear friend who has been fighting the SSDI appeals process for his Multiple Sclerosis diagnosis since 2008 ALSO won, within a few weeks of me getting my news. Same attorney, same city. We figure our attorney is single-handedly changing the appeals survival rate in Seattle. )!

What was even luckier is that my other attorney and I were still battling my private disability insurance for benefits. We were able to include in our motion to the judge the fact that the SSA had just ruled me totally disabled. That was a very timely bit of news, as it helped us win the motion for back benefits against the evil insurance company for the 'own occupation' phase of my policy.

We're not done battling yet - we are now fighting to get my private insurance monthly benefits reinstated now that we are in the "any occupation" phase. I am back to filling out more forms all over again, and being concerned about how I am answering: Trying not to mistakenly give this evil insurance company any ammunition they can use against me. I'm so very tired of lawsuits and appeals. I'm still in shock that ERISA allows these companies to prey upon disabled people with NO PENALTY even when they are proved wrong and try to use dirty tactics. I wish something could be done to fix this for ALL of us. !

If you are still battling: hang in there!
Posted By: Ken Delano Re: Here's a new one with SSA . . - 03/16/16 11:33 AM
Great to see a deserving person finally getting what they EARNED and QUALIFY for!
Posted By: Banana Re: Here's a new one with SSA . . - 03/17/16 09:38 PM
Good for you. Sorry for the delay in getting your money. I got the money even before the letter.
Posted By: Rich Feingold Re: Here's a new one with SSA . . - 12/14/16 09:10 PM
All the best to you.

Posted By: LarryC213 Re: Here's a new one with SSA . . - 03/11/17 07:10 AM
funchefchick, Congratulations on your victory. And good luck with the other. Miracles do happen. Thank God.


Larry in NC
Posted By: Freddie Re: Here's a new one with SSA . . - 07/16/18 02:15 AM
I filed with attorney in April 2018. From what I read if I have arms and legs I will be denied. I worked hard labor 20 years as a cowboy. I worked 16 years high tech, fiber optic tech. I will be denied because I have a brain. I can use a computer they say. Well I have carple tunnel too. And plantar fasciitis. If I get denied I give up. I know people who get Max SSDI and they are faking. For his back and he is out fishing 12ft sturgeon. Tell me, if your on SSDI for not being able to work, how in the hell can you even think about fishing for 300 pound fish. These are the people who make it so hard for us that actually need and deserve this benefit. His name Jim innes II Camas WA. SS NEEDS TO INVESTIGATE EACH CLAIM YEARLY.
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