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Regular Member

Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 229
   Posted 5/10/2009 1:01 AM (GMT -6)   
Well today I got my letter of denial for my disability request. They told me that after careful consideration that they had decided that I could walk alone and stand alone although I had some difficulties in these areas but that I was educated enough to find other employment!!
I'd just love to find a job that would allow me to type 20 words a minute apposed to 65 I used to because of the arthritis in my hands. Or a job that would let you miss a week or two because you were unable to get out of bed because you were in so much pain. This last week I could barely walk with out help and had trouble holding a coffee cup because of my hands. I believe I'll get a lawyer this time because this is nuts!!! I guess that in my heart I figured that they would deny me like they do everyone else it seems. I'm just tired of jumping through the hoops! shakehead
Degenerative disc disease,osteoarthritis, status post 4 cervical spinal surgeries with plate insertions and fusion, Lupus, Sjogren's Disease, Fibromyalgia, chronic heacaches and chronic pain.

Regular Member

Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 487
   Posted 5/10/2009 1:40 AM (GMT -6)   

I would definitely recommend getting an attorney to help you, but please do some research or ask people for recommendations to help you find a good one.

I'm sorry that you are having so much difficulty, but I honestly think they do this on purpose hoping that you will give up.

I know the whole process is frustrating, scary, and downright maddening. I've been on SSD for several years, and every 2 years or so they re-evaluate you to see if you "still meet their discription of totally disabled". 15 pages of questions for me and every one of my doctors, and if it goes the same as last time, I will get an additional 25 pages of questions for me and every one of my doctor's to fill out. They ask you the same question 6 different ways, trying to get you to contradict yourself, and if the doctors don't get the paperwork done and turned in on time, they make it your responsibility to get them to do it or they "may" cut off your money. Then after I do all of that, they will probably send me to one of their doctor's and you never know what they are going to say.

I hope that you are successful on your next attempt!


Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2008
Total Posts : 1560
   Posted 5/10/2009 3:17 AM (GMT -6)   
Nurse; I am so sorry. I know how frustrating it is to be denied for basic disability. We work so hard over our lifetime (even though mine was a bit short) and are told that if we are disabled for any reason that SS will pay us. Then they turn around and screw us! Telling us that there are 1-2 jobs out there that we can do. I'm well versed at the computer....have Microsoft certifications....can type 65 wpm. but......I can't sit for longer then 5 min...can't walk long distances....can't stand for more then 3 min. and need to lay down at least half the day. Do you think that matters??? Nope, they tell me I am able to work. Even a Judge Advocate said the same thing. My age stands against me in this matter, though all my medical records support my disability.

It bites...get an atorney hun. I hope the best in your next try at it.


What doesn't kill us only makes us fight back harder! :P

Veteran Member

Date Joined Nov 2007
Total Posts : 6795
   Posted 5/10/2009 3:42 AM (GMT -6)   
So sorry about the denial, but as I keep hearing it's almost standard operating procedure, although a few people here have gotten it on the first try. I think some of it is having everything fall into place, some of it's age, some of it's how backed up your state is in processing, and some probably just luck. I dread it but am beginning to slowly piece it together. Sometimes I'm not sure if an attorney helps all the time. I may be wrong, but it seems most want you to get your initial denial first, but there are people here who know a lot more than I do.

Regardless, it's frustrating - and more, because we need the income to live off of!



Regular Member

Date Joined Apr 2009
Total Posts : 109
   Posted 5/10/2009 6:47 AM (GMT -6)   

It seems more get denied the first time around then get approved that's for sure.

As for an Attorney its up to you but until you get the second denial there really isnt much they can do to change the outcome. If you get denied again and if your state is one that requires 2 denials to ask for a hearing then you may want to obtain an Attorney but like already said make sure you shop around and word of mouth here is as good as anyway to find one with a winning track record.

There are several ways to expedite the process at certain points in the process but they dont do much good if you attempt to use them before the timing is right.

Make sure above all that you get your appeal in on time and make sure you keep a copy of exactly the thing you sent in as it has been known to get lost! Even make a copy of the envelope you mail it back in and take it to the post office and have them give you a receipt dated that it was postmarked as this is important. If it doesnt get to them they can and do make you start the entire process over from begining. It has to be postmarked by the date they give and if it isnt they will deny you.

Keep each and every piece of correspondance they send you in a file and make sure you get a copy of every Doctors notes from every Doctor you see from now until the end of this thing and that means therapists of all kinds as well even if it is physical. Send a copy of those with each packet of questions they send you as what the Docs offices send them you will find can be far less then the copy of medical records they give you as they usually just answer the questionare and dont make copies of your notes or your chart.

Letters from those that know you well and know your situation well and especially those that help you out when you need help all can help make or break a decision.Be brutally honest when they ask a question but simply and not overdone. If you have any kind of repoire with your past employer and you missed alot of work due to pain and those issues ask someone there to also write a letter stating what they observed and how much you missed or went home early or came in late.

Leave nothing out and every record is important. They usually always state due to your education and age we feel that you can handle some type of employment and this is where you research what jobs they actually think you can do and how many hours can you do it. Use to be if you could not do your regular job or the job you were trained to do was enough to grant you unable to work but that isnt so anymore as they feel if you can do any substantial work for any amount of time then you are not disabled totally and this is the required decision needed.

The majority of it all is how you answer the questions and an example would be if they asked if you cook for yourself and you say no never and they already know you live totally alone and have no support system,how do you eat? If you can get to the door,afford take out and delivary then you can most likely throw a dinner in the microwave so saying you never cook is the wrong answer. You would want to stress you use to cook large meals and now you eat mostly efficient meals that can be reheated in shorts amounts of time or that someone like your sister prepares for you and freezes and you reheat and eat.

Another example is do you walk to the mailbox and how far is it? Do you walk around your yard? If you go out to the mailbox you might not want to say no never but rather I have to go slow and every 2 days rather then daily and I have to stick to the sidewalks as walking on grass or uneven ground is too difficult or makes me fear falling.

Who does your laundry? You cant say you never do it so you say someone gets it out and I sit on the couch and fold it and then someone puts it away for me. Or I have to use a rolling hamper and push it to the couch to fold when I have a good moment. I lived in a townhome where the laundry room and bathroom were on the top level and I couldnt do the stairs so I had to move,not something you would think to tell them but a very positive answer to their question.

Just make sure you take your time and give each question alot of thought before answering and again be brutally honest but believable all the same.

When and if you get to the hearing stage you can contact your state reps and ask them to file a dire need request for you and this helps move you along in the hearing process which can take a year in some states. If your money is gone and your in dire straights and to the point of homelessness then you can get a speedier hearing date. I have not seen a Rep that doesnt have a email request form for just this and then you will be assigned one of their aides that specialize in this and asked to sign a release form so they can gain access to your info that SSD has on you. I went from a date of unknown origion after doing this to one 6 weeks ahead. So it does work to your advantage.

Good luck and dont give up as they say that is what they are hoping you will do.

Regular Member

Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 168
   Posted 5/10/2009 11:20 AM (GMT -6)   
When I went on to disability a few years ago I also had long term disability insurance from my former employer. I thought at the time that I had reasonable financial security and could focus on recovery and deal with the pain. Then the insurance company starting sending me forms that required my doctor to fill out to prove that I still needed LTD payments. They I got a call from the insurance asking to an appointment to "review their findings" in my case. They came and showed me a video where they had tracked me and my wife over the period of a couple of days. Everything we did was recorded. They even followed us on a shopping trip to get groceries and followed us around the store. All of this to see if I was doing anything that would indicate to them that I was not, in fact, disabled as I claimed to be. Fortunately for me, they found no such evidence. But I felt my privacy had been invaded and my honesty had been called into question. Since then, I feel like everytime I step out of the house I have to look around to see if anybody out of the ordinary is watching. It's a horrible feeling to think that you are being followed and watched. I still feel like a have to stay in the house and pull the blinds. The letters and forms keep on coming like clockwork. Threatening me and placing a paperwork burden on my primary doc. When you are hurting and feeling down this is no way to be treated. The good news/bad news is that when I turn 65 all the harrassment stops. So do the checks.

Good luck to all,

Degenerative disc disease, 4 back surgeries, fused from L2-S1, instrumentation. Being treated for chronic pain. Oxycodone 30 mg. IR. Candidate for SCS in the future.

White Beard
Forum Moderator

Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 3697
   Posted 5/10/2009 11:34 AM (GMT -6)   
I know all to well your disappointment and frustration. Only a few make it through the first time, so please ( although I know that you do, everyone does!) don't take it personally. If nothing else an attorney takes allot of the worry and burden off your shoulders,you don't have to worry about if you filed all the paper work correctly! And their reassurance is also very nice! My attorney kept telling me that my age and my education and back ground experience was what SS was using to block me from disability, they didn't even seem to care about my medical problems, when even their own Doctors said I wasn't able to work they, still claimed I could do this or that. At the last hearing I had they said I could be a used car salesman! The judge had me walk around the room ( I walk bent over with a cain) and then he asked the SS guy, "Would you buy a car from him?" And the Judge said "I probably wouldn't!" He then ordered me to get one more test done and 6 months later I got my approval notice with it back dated to the beginning of when it was first filed. Over two years earlier!

nurse2 I know it is hard, with the pain you are in and then having to see the rejection, personally I would hire an attorney, try to find one that specializes in SSD claims, allot of them will accept paymnent only if they win and they will take it out of the back dated or retroactive payment, soo there is no money up front! Especially if they feel you have a good case! . A rejection does not mean anything when it comes to how good of a case your have! I really do have empathy for you, I have been through it and I know how it feels, the hurt and frustration, seem unbearable, " Why can't they understand! I just can't do this!" and on and on! nurse2 persistence and perseverance will get you through this. Just don't give up!
I wish you well, and Try and have a Happy Mothers Day!

White Beard
  I'm Retired USAF, went back to school and became an RN, and now am on full disalbility!--Degenerative Disc (affecting mostly the thorasic disc but all levels involved), C6/7 laminectomy/diskectomy& fusion, Osteoarthritis, Ulcerative colitis, Chronic Pain, Fibromyalgia, Complex Sleep Apnea, and host of other things to spice up my life!(NOT!) Medications: Oxycontin, Percocet, Baclofen, Sulfasalazine, Metoprolol, Folic Acid, Supplemental O2 at 3lpm with VPAP Adapt SV

Forum Moderator

Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 16426
   Posted 5/11/2009 11:58 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Nurse2, I am so sorry to read about the Denial from SSD. You know for some reason when it comes to back claims they seem to think everyone will just get over it and get on with it. It can be so infuriating to say the least. If this is your 2nd denial from them, now is the time to hire an atty. I suggest you try and find an atty Board Certified in SS claims. If not, find one that handles SS only. Do not get one that is a jack of all trades and master of none. What I mean by that, is don't waste you time hiring one that handles traffic tickets, divorces, car wrecks, anything that walks in the door that may be a case. Get an atty that handles SSD claims only. He will be more versed in the ins & outs of SSD claims. Back when I did SSD claims for our clients, I use to say "SS feels you can work if you are breathing". That really hasn't changed that much either. Don't give up, keep pushing forward, alot of times and most of the time it does take a hearing before an ALJ to get their attention. Susie

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