CSN Login
Members Online: 0

You are here

Social Security Benefits

bdee
Posts: 305
Joined: Feb 2009

Is anyone on this board getting disability benefits from Social Security? If so, how hard was it to get? Did you use a lawyer or on your own?

Thanks,
Debbie

scouty's picture
scouty
Posts: 1976
Joined: Apr 2004

I signed up as part of a requirement for my long term disability plan with my employer 4 years ago. The key is having your doctor on board with the reasons why you can't work, specifics things really seemed to help mine.

I applied on line first then did a phone interview and filled out a form they mailed to me. I took a copy of forms to my oncologist and we discussed what to say (he completely supported me) so we were in sync. He then filled out his forms and sent them in. I applied the first week of August 2005 and was told it would take about 3 months. The first week of October I got a letter in the mail telling me I had been approved and they backdated the payments to the first of the years (even when I was getting short term disability pay from my employer). I had gone out on short term disability a year earlier and that lasted 52 weeks. I was in a pressure cooker of a job having to lay people off and still get the work done. Chemo brain killed my ability to keep up with IMs and the 200 plus emails I got daily while the neuropathy in the hands made typing on a keyboard (my lifeline) very difficult. I decided I needed to concentrate on ME for the first time in my life.

It was actually easier then what I had to do for my employer!!! Don't let the stupid commercials on TV scare you, my experience was very easy and straightforward. I was so surprised I called my oncologist and asked if he was hiding something from me!!!

FYI, luckily I had never had to take unemployement or any other payments and had been paying into the "pot" since I was 16 (I was 50 at the time and stage IV). I'm not sure that had anything to do with it but thought I should mention it.

Let me know if I can help in any way.

Lisa P.

bdee
Posts: 305
Joined: Feb 2009

Thanks for your help. I am Stage IV with seven tumors left after surgery. I cannot take the full amount of 5fu because it was killing me faster than my cancer. My husband is too scared to try it on our own, so we are going through Binder and Binder. My daughter works for a lawyer and she's telling me how hard it is to qualify.

bdee
Posts: 305
Joined: Feb 2009

Has anyone heard about a five month wait? My husband found there is a five month wait on the disability check. Anyone else have to wait? How long have any of you been getting disability?

Thanks again,
Debbie

kimby's picture
kimby
Posts: 804
Joined: Oct 2007

It is a 6 month wait from the date of disability. Are they saying that your husband has been disabled for 1 month? That would mean benefits kick in in 5 months. It sucks....what are you supposed to do in the meantime? At least he made it through the process.

Good Luck,

Kimby

bdee
Posts: 305
Joined: Feb 2009

It has been six months already from the date of disability. It is me that is disabled, my husband just does the searches on the internet. I called SS yesterday and was told about the five month waiting period. Why isn't that information on the website you use to file a claim online? And when my case worker called, she told me the claim would be looked at in a couple of weeks. Why didn't she tell me?

I had my surgery on January 23, started chemo February 23 and my last day of part time work was March 20, 2009. So how do they pick what date for the five month waiting period.

Thank goodness my husband had a good job with good pay and we can make it until I start getting my disability. Just no taking the kids out to eat (which I so enjoyed).

Thanks, Debbie

PamPam2's picture
PamPam2
Posts: 376
Joined: Jan 2009

As soon as found out the colon cancer had metastized, they approved it. I was able to do it all over the phone, they had sent me the thickest packet of paperwork to fill out, I contacted SS, they assigned me a caseworker, went there, she filled it out for me, then another caseworker did same over phone when found out there were mets and was approved quite quickly. Hope it goes as easily for you.
Pam

bdee
Posts: 305
Joined: Feb 2009

If you approved quickly, did you still have to wait the five months to receive your first check? Did your fist check come with any back pay? What state do you live in?

kimby's picture
kimby
Posts: 804
Joined: Oct 2007

Debbie,

What stage are you? Stage IV crc is 'on the list' of automatic approval. I filled out my application online, they called for more info, I faxed them more stuff....all a big pain but not difficult I guess. From the date of my online application, I was approved in about 33 days, the next month a got a check for all the months they said I qualified and the next month my benefits check began. It was quick and simple. If you are not stage IV however, the process is much more difficult and complicated. I recommend you listen to someone else in that event. :)

Good Luck,

Kimby

bdee
Posts: 305
Joined: Feb 2009

Thanks for your help. I am Stage IV with seven tumors left after surgery. I cannot take the full amount of 5fu because it was killing me faster than my cancer. My husband is too scared to try it on our own, so we are going through Binder and Binder. My daughter works for a lawyer and she's telling me how hard it is to qualify.

jenben59
Posts: 144
Joined: Jan 2009

I've heard a lot of people complain about Social Security. When I had my brain tumors it was approved immediately. I paid my insurance though COBRA for two years because it was excellent. After it ended, Social Security kicked in with absolutely no problems. I think the people that have truly handicapping conditions, cancer, etc. don't have problems getting Social Security. The ones that want a free handout is another story. (Oh, my hand hurts, I pulled a muscle in my back and can never work again. Stuff like that.)

Shayenne's picture
Shayenne
Posts: 2370
Joined: Jan 2009

...didn't get much, they based it too much on my hubby's income, and since he makes too much, I can't get anything unless he gets laid off or something, otherwise, they won't also give me anything because I been a stay at home for 10 years, and not worked in awhile.

kimby's picture
kimby
Posts: 804
Joined: Oct 2007

They don't even collect info on your hubby's income for SSDI. That was for SSI most probably. Not the same thing. It is based on the amount of social security you have paid in, so it really sucks if you were a stay at home mom and didn't get enough years in. I was, too but due to boredom I always had supplemental income from owning small businesses. Then I went back to work sooner than most - like the minute the youngest was in school full time.

I hate that you and others don't qualify because you took excellent care of your family. I have a very good friend who stayed home with her 4 kids and was diagnosed with canzer when her youngest was 7. She was unable to work through treatments because they were done inpatient and she had a bone marrow transplant. Treatment took a year, recovery from the treatment took at least a year and the radiation therapy left her with permanent lung damage and congestive heart failure. She is just not able to work full time and can't qualify for SSDI either because she didn't work enough years.

I just started on SSDI in January and keep finding myself on Monster.com and entrepreneurial websites. I have plans for my next business and want desperately to go back to work. Everyone thinks I should wait until I can make it through Walmart without finding a bench to rest on or stand long enough to cook my family dinner. LOL Daily liver radiation could be part of my treatment again come August or possibly liver resection. I think I'll at least wait that long.

Anyways, I got way off track once again.

Kimby

Shayenne's picture
Shayenne
Posts: 2370
Joined: Jan 2009

...working at my new job for 5 months, after going to school for 2 years to get my Associate's Degree for Medical Office Administration. I loved my new job, but had to quit after 5 months because the chemo just wore me out too much, I couldn't even do the familiy Medical Leave Act because you had to be there for a year, and then went to Soc Sec, who did say, even though I worked since I was 18, put money in Soc Sec for years and years till I was 33, stayed at home 10 years to raise my 4 kids, was diagnosed with this stupid disease at 43, I was out of work too long to collect a thing, I was angry, I mean what about all that money I did contribute while I worked all those other years? it was just stupid.

I plan on going back to work I hope once the treatments are over, if anyone will even hire me. My old job I still visit, and wants me back, but I can't right now, but we'll see what happens when I get the treatments done. It sucks I can't qualify for any income.

Hugsss!
~Donna

Nana b's picture
Nana b
Posts: 3045
Joined: May 2009

My surgeon suggest that I go on LTD for my next three months of chemo but I am scared of letting my job go. Plus where would I get medical benefits from? My husband is basically unemployed with only substitute teaching jobs bringing in money.

I have worked all my life, and now that I have cancer I could qualify for 60% of my LTD, but what if after the next 6 chemo treatments I get to NED (wish!!!) and don't qualify anymore for LTD or SS?? I would have to find a job in this terrible economy, then what if I have a relapse before I qualifiy again for FMLA? I would lose my medical insurance and my job. This is all too scary for me.

I was in he military 15 years, I wonder if VA benefits are available! I keep saying I will think about this tomorrow, but tomorrow and going back to work is approaching soon.

What's terrible... is that I am just getting my strengh back from having surgery, and chemo is scheduled for next week.

tiny one
Posts: 467
Joined: Jan 2009

I applied was turned down. I now have a lawyer. It is a long process. My next step will be a hearing. This can take up to 1 year. I think it's been 6 months already. It depends on each person's curcumstance. There's alot of paperwork involved also.

eyeswideopen
Posts: 3
Joined: May 2009

Hi tinyand all hope no one minds me jumping in here but tiny"s comment struck me,let briefly say Im sorry you all have cancer I dont have cancer but the lack of good doctors but my story comes to life 26 yrs ago while giving birth to my first child.I have five now but after 2 reconstructive surgeries my doc say he cant fix so he"ll just put whole in my stomach and call it a day Im freak out about this and very much welcome it also because I have so many problems with everything down under and have been under so much pain and discomfort but the thing is my docs are acting like this is my fault so if you all believe because I really dont have cancer and this isnt the place for me I will understand but I very much want to be a part of others who have ostomy lleostomy I not even sure what the doctor is going to do I do know that it will be permanent and that I wont have use of the rectum,but what brings me to here TINY is I filed ssdi -ssi first time in 94 and again in 2004 been in front of a judge once and due to go back in front of the judge by sept,2009 so its been a long journey but the news of more surgery my bring it on faster and I have a lawyer but anyway again I really hope Im not embarrassing my self again and hope I finally found my online family you guys sound like really caring people godbless and hope to talk with all again

kimby's picture
kimby
Posts: 804
Joined: Oct 2007

We tend to welcome all here, but I think you'd find more ostomy help at the United Ostomy Association of America. www.uoaa.org They have a wonderful message board full of surprisingly magnificant people. We'll be glad to help where we can, but as you know, there are many reasons people end up with an ostomy. I can't think of a single situation that isn't addressed at uoaa.

So, stick around and enjoy. But please, check out the uoaa, too.

Best wishes,

Kimby

eyeswideopen
Posts: 3
Joined: May 2009

thanks for your response thanks for the infor . I will check it out I"ve been all over the internet I guess I might been a little craz or just wasnt looking the right direction but whatever yes I will stick around have a brother with leukemia.thanks again

bdee
Posts: 305
Joined: Feb 2009

What kind of cancer do you have? My SS case worker called me this morning and seemed to think I'd get my first check in around two months.

kimby's picture
kimby
Posts: 804
Joined: Oct 2007

I'm not sure who you were asking this of. This isn't the most user-friendly messageboard sometimes. I have stage IV colon canzer and had my approval in about a month and my check the next. I was also working at the time and they approved me from my date of diagnosis. I worked for 18 mos. I was an independant contractor so my circumstances are different than most, but approval is based on the 'compassionate care' list and so is the expedited approval.

Kimby

bdee
Posts: 305
Joined: Feb 2009

I worked for a while after my surgery and after starting chemo, but I had to stop when "chemo brain" started working overtime. The case worker wasn't sure if they could back pay me to the surgery date or the last time I worked date. Either way, she seemed sure I would have a reply in about a month. I hope that reply means a check LOL!

Thanks for everyone's answers,
Debbie

drmrgirl47's picture
drmrgirl47
Posts: 129
Joined: Mar 2004

Hi, I applied for social security disability online. I had my operation in January of 2004. Stage 3, rectal cancer. Followed by chemo and radiation. A few weeks later I applied online. I remember filling out approximately 150 pages. I was so thorough. I had all kinds of records and info they requested. Shortly after that, I received my checks. So I have to say I had no problem. I did not use a lawyer.

idlehunters's picture
idlehunters
Posts: 1792
Joined: Apr 2009

wow... I was blowed away. I went online last nite. Completed about 10 pages of info and when it asked if I was terminal (I am stage IV) so technically yes... It said "stop here and report to your local SS office asap"...okay. I was going to call them the next day but by 9:15am THEY called me and left a message on my recorder saying to come in and they would process me immediately. We were on our way in about an hour later and they called again to make sure I was coming. They just couldn't wait to "show me the money"!!! They took me in immediately... no waiting.... filled out all within 15 min. and said I would be approved within a week. Man.... I still can't believe how easy it was.

Jennie

bdee
Posts: 305
Joined: Feb 2009

My husband filled out all of mine online and he put yes to terminal too. What state do you live in? My state agency called me the next day but they just wanted me to fax in the page where I say they can look at my records. My case worker never said anything about coming right in. She just said we would hear in a month.

bdee
Posts: 305
Joined: Feb 2009

My husband filled out all of mine online and he put yes to terminal too. What state do you live in? My state agency called me the next day but they just wanted me to fax in the page where I say they can look at my records. My case worker never said anything about coming right in. She just said we would hear in a month.

kimby's picture
kimby
Posts: 804
Joined: Oct 2007

I'm in a rural area and when SSDI called me the next morning, they got everything else they needed by phone and I faxed them some. I didn't go in, I think because the office that services my area isn't in my county. (Like I said, rural LOL) They were very nice, the process was quick and easy (well, lots of paperwork) and it didn't take long for approval.

Getting a lawyer is certainly not neccessary if you are stage IV. The stage III folks may have a harder time. "Terminal" is the key word - ick! I NEVER use that stupid word! Well, unless they send me money. $$) Then all bets are off!

Kimby

confused1's picture
confused1
Posts: 50
Joined: Feb 2009

I did my interview over the phone and got it with in 1 month . No problems with them at all. I think I received mine so quickly because I am in stage 4. Not sure but I didn't have any problem's getting it at all. Good Luck to UU.

Shayenne's picture
Shayenne
Posts: 2370
Joined: Jan 2009

...I live in a really rural area as well, and they tried to get me the money real quick as well, I just wish they didn't count my 5 months of income plus hubbys unemployment, but oh well, it's still not like we made enough to live on, with 4 kids, but they did give me like 68 bucks a month, and now hubby just has to show each month what he makes since he went back to work, to pro-rate it to what he is now making or something....it's strange.

idlehunters's picture
idlehunters
Posts: 1792
Joined: Apr 2009

I live in Illinois. They said I would be approved within 1 week but there is a 5 month waiting period from the day you were disabled. My monthly amount was determined on my previous years wages. I will be getting $1165.00 monthly. Not a lot but WAY better than nothing. Good luck

Jennie

bdee
Posts: 305
Joined: Feb 2009

Jennie,

Was that this year? How long ago did you put the claim in?

Thanks, Debbie

amcp
Posts: 251
Joined: Jan 2009

My husband had his cancer diagnosed in 8/06 surgery 9/06 chemo started 11/06..on short term disability from work. In March of 2007 they (the company) said that he had to apply for Social Security Disability. We also did it on line. Called next day by SSD office went in took a few minutes...said there was a 5 month waiting period in Tennessee. Because of the way my husband was paid etc we were told he had already done the 5 month waiting period and that we would be receiving a check in May for April and that they would be holding the March check..for a while. Finally the end of 2007 we got the March check. But we were approved in less than 2 weeks later. Starting receiving monthly checks in May 2007 and continue to receive them. We have a % taken out for taxes even though not all of the total you receive is taxable. We did not have to get a lawyer. It was a quick and easy process of course our doctor said he was terminal Stage 4 but he is still here and in two months it will be 3 yrs from diagnosis.

Hugs,
Anna

idlehunters's picture
idlehunters
Posts: 1792
Joined: Apr 2009

Debbie,

They put my file date as Feb. 3rd. Approved me in less than a week... and said after 5 month waiting period would get first check 1st of September.

Jennie

effiehope
Posts: 4
Joined: Jun 2009

Hi. I am new here.In april 2006 I was diagnosed with stage IV rectal cancer I applied for benefits and was denied it took two years before it would go in front of a judge by that time I was through with my treatments and back to a new job. I am now a 3 year survivor with a clean bill of health. Good luck and prayers to all here. Effie

Subscribe to Comments for "Social Security Benefits"