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Sun Oct 18, 2020, 03:40 PM

Biden/ Harris and SSDI

Does anyone know what Biden's stance is on helping disabled people get SSDI easier? My doctors want me on SSDI and have declared me disabled. I'm awaiting the election result to see if I can have my doctors take me out of work.

I'm assuming , and I hope I'm right, that Democrats will shorten the wait time, get people onto Medicare sooner, and eradicate the onerous tests Republicans have inflicted on the disabled. I also hope the benefit is increased.

I would hope backlogs would be resolved by hiring more agents with Social Security.

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Arrow 19 replies Author Time Post
Reply Biden/ Harris and SSDI (Original post)
XanaDUer2 Sunday OP
WhiskeyWulf Sunday #1
XanaDUer2 Sunday #4
WhiskeyWulf Sunday #8
mopinko Sunday #13
WhiskeyWulf Sunday #15
XanaDUer2 Sunday #17
mopinko Sunday #19
flamin lib Sunday #2
XanaDUer2 Sunday #5
grantcart Sunday #10
PoindexterOglethorpe Sunday #14
flamin lib Sunday #16
XanaDUer2 Sunday #18
TexasBushwhacker Sunday #3
XanaDUer2 Sunday #9
moonscape Sunday #6
XanaDUer2 Sunday #7
moonscape Sunday #11
2naSalit Sunday #12

Response to XanaDUer2 (Original post)

Sun Oct 18, 2020, 03:46 PM

1. I found this:

https://joebiden.com/disabilities/

To protect the economic security of people with disabilities and increase employment opportunities, Biden will take a holistic approach to Supplemental Security Income (SSI), Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI), Medicaid, and other programs to support people with disabilities. He will:

Increase the benefit level for people receiving SSI. Biden will set a federal benefit rate of at least 100% of the poverty level.

Eliminate the five-month waiting period for SSDI and two-year waiting period for Medicare. Biden will work to pass legislation to ensure working people who develop a condition or disability are able to get their Social Security support as well as their Medicare benefits as soon as they qualify.

Eliminate the “benefit cliff” for SSDI. Earnings limits under SSDI can discourage people with disabilities from engaging in employment or internship opportunities when they depend on SSDI funds. Biden will increase this limit and phase out this benefit gradually so people with disabilities don’t have to choose between employment and health care.

Reform the SSI program so that it doesn’t limit beneficiaries’ freedom to marry, save, or live where they choose. Biden will work with Congress and the disability community to eliminate the SSI marriage penalty and “in-kind support and maintenance” provision and raise the asset limits associated with SSI that have not been increased since 1984.

Expand access to tax-advantaged savings accounts, ABLE accounts, which provide people with disabilities a way to pay for “qualified disability-related expenses, such as education, housing and transportation.” Biden will work to pass the ABLE Age Adjustment Act, which will make ABLE accounts available to 6 million additional adults with disabilities, including 1 million veterans.

Reverse damage done to Social Security rules by the Trump Administration. President Trump announced that he wants to change the Social Security rules for people who get disability benefits, including SSI and SSDI. His proposed change would require many to re-verify their disability every two years, a tough enough process to get through once, targeting adults with disabilities who are close to retirement, children with disabilities, and people with certain medical conditions including cancer and behavioral disorders. If approved by the Trump Administration, Biden will rescind this harmful proposal.

Strengthen the Social Security Administration. Ensuring that Social Security benefits are easy to access and that field offices and teleservice centers are fully funded is key to our bedrock commitment to seniors and people with disabilities. Cutting Social Security services will only hurt the most vulnerable in our communities. Biden will provide sufficient resources for staffing needs to meet the needs of beneficiaries today and into the future.

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Response to WhiskeyWulf (Reply #1)

Sun Oct 18, 2020, 03:52 PM

4. Thanks!

You're wonderful

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Response to XanaDUer2 (Reply #4)

Sun Oct 18, 2020, 04:01 PM

8. Aw, thank you.

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Response to WhiskeyWulf (Reply #1)

Sun Oct 18, 2020, 04:24 PM

13. if he could get rid of the marriage penalty, that would be great.

my youngest is on ssdi. she only gets about $800/mo now, but when her dad retires in 2 yrs, she will get a lot more.
she lives w a great guy and would love to marry him. but then his earnings would count against her benefits.
it sucks.

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Response to mopinko (Reply #13)

Sun Oct 18, 2020, 04:44 PM

15. That does suck. :( nt

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Response to mopinko (Reply #13)

Sun Oct 18, 2020, 05:03 PM

17. That's horrible

Average people are under siege in this country. So much for family values

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Response to XanaDUer2 (Reply #17)

Sun Oct 18, 2020, 05:57 PM

19. ikr? kid has a great job.

botanist at u of chicago.
such a sweetie, too. if it was just the $800 he wouldnt take no for an answer.

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Response to XanaDUer2 (Original post)

Sun Oct 18, 2020, 03:50 PM

2. Regardless of the Dem policy

don't me disheartened when you are turned down. It's an automatic response Dr.'s recommendation or not. Reapply and hire a SSDI advocate. You may have to reapply more than once but you definitely need someone who knows the nuts and bolts of the system. My SIL had to apply 4 times. So did a friend who has intractable epilepsy.

All initial applications are handled at the clerical level. You need someone who knows how to escalate it to a decision maker.

Don't give up and hire help.

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Response to flamin lib (Reply #2)

Sun Oct 18, 2020, 03:54 PM

5. I have an ssdi attorney

I'm assuming I'll get turned down at least once. Having worked 32 years, is infuriating. I'm 55 which my lawyer told me is a good age to start, since I'm older

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Response to XanaDUer2 (Reply #5)

Sun Oct 18, 2020, 04:10 PM

10. I have several clients who used said attorney with good results



My understanding is they get 2 months benefit for their pay but always get the start at least 2 months earlier so it's a win wun

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Response to flamin lib (Reply #2)

Sun Oct 18, 2020, 04:31 PM

14. Being turned down is NOT an automatic response.

But it happens so often because people just haven't a clue just how much is needed to be approved.

First off, you have to have worked long enough in jobs covered by SS to qualify.

And then, you must be:
Unable to do the same work you did before you became disabled
Unable to do other jobs
Having a disability that is expected to last more than a year or lead to death

Those are pretty brutal qualifications.

I was an intern for a while for an attorney who did SSDI appeals, and I learned a lot. Many people rather casually think they can go on disability when they can't. Perhaps the most important thing is the documentation needed. You really have to have been under a doctor's care and then get full copies of everything. I spent a lot of time at a local SS office photocopying files that were six inches or more thick.

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Response to PoindexterOglethorpe (Reply #14)

Sun Oct 18, 2020, 04:44 PM

16. Thank you for your response and I'm happy to have someone who has experience in the field.

That said both of the cases I mentioned met all the requirements and had a Dr.'s recommendation and were turned down until they got an attorney. One even with an SSDI attorney and with the reams of paperwork and was turned down the first two times. 'Course I'm in Texas and the social safety net is kinda' thin here. You know the attitude; pull yourself up by your bootstraps and all 'welfare recipients drive Cadillacs'. The epileptic case had to get a judge involved for God's sake.

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Response to flamin lib (Reply #2)

Sun Oct 18, 2020, 05:15 PM

18. Thank you

I get more down and anxious at the thought of a long, unsucessful slog

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Response to XanaDUer2 (Original post)

Sun Oct 18, 2020, 03:51 PM

3. I recommend that you go ahead and get an attorney

The problem with the SSDI applications is that they don't ask the right questions, especially for "invisible" disabilities like mental illness. A good disability attorney will guide you to give the right information. If you don't get any back payments it will cost you nothing. If you do get back payments, they will get a percentage that is limited by law.

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Response to TexasBushwhacker (Reply #3)

Sun Oct 18, 2020, 04:07 PM

9. I did

They had to clarify that the sequence is my docs take me out of work, I apply for my paid-outta-my-pocket short-term disability ins, apply for ssdi once I'm out, after 90 days try to get employers LTD they pay for, while I wait. I am sure I'll be turned down for both. I had to get an attorney to get my STD insurance last time I took FMLA. Nothing but denials and fights constantly.

My lawyer said he'd take my turndowns as seperate cases. It makes my anxiety worse

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Response to XanaDUer2 (Original post)

Sun Oct 18, 2020, 03:55 PM

6. The long wait if one is rejected on first application

has been going on for many years and a lot depends on where one lives. I doubt this would change Feb 2021 and personally would make my decision based on whether I could work or not.

My friend who had brain surgery and suffered permanent dementia as a result, got SSDI ASAP. Another friend with cancer, who had total support of docs, did not because she still had the ability to work, if with more difficulty.

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Response to moonscape (Reply #6)

Sun Oct 18, 2020, 04:01 PM

7. 32 years working

And I feel like a beggar

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Response to XanaDUer2 (Reply #7)

Sun Oct 18, 2020, 04:19 PM

11. Awww. No :( I'd consider talking to a good

disability attorney to find out your odds of immediate success based on the nature of disability. If rejected at first, then the 1st appeal has a very high rate of rejection because it's a clerical rubber stamp, but that one can come quickly. It's the 2nd appeal that can take time, the one that leads to a judicial hearing. I went to one of those with the son of a friend. He was destitute and I paid his attorney fee. He ended up getting disabilty (bipolar mostly) after having been thrown off it.

Not sure where you can find the info but an attorney would know, the percentage success rate, and length of wait, where your hearing would be. It can take a year or more to get a hearing.

I guess my point was mostly that I'd expect things not to change from where they have been for decades really. The wait didn't get quicker under Obama to my knowledge. And I suspect with the economy the way it is, they will be flooded with more applications.

Very sorry this is an issue for you

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Response to XanaDUer2 (Original post)

Sun Oct 18, 2020, 04:20 PM

12. My experience was...

That I had the good fortune that my healthcare provider has an on staff advocate for clients to navigate their insurance and healthcare issues. They helped me get through the application process and was covered because I was on Medicaid at the time, my state provided full coverage at the time. I had applied five years prior but had no help in getting through the paywall, and prior to our state adopting the expanded Medicaid so I couldn't even get treated for the injury that ended my working life but I still had to work for five years with the injury that became a permanent thing... and then a year of not being able to work during the application wait on the second try.

Without the guidance of the advocate I doubt I would have been accepted... and I'm an MPA.

She knew what to do, what to expect and how to respond to all communications. She also counseled me about wait times. The first following the interview which you may have to wait for too, is 90 days to the first response which will be a rejection. Immediately request a medical review and sign releases for your medical records, for me it was the recent MRIs I couldn't afford earlier. The next wait period is a minimum of 6 months, after that, if rejected, is when you get an attorney, they will take around 20% of the initial reward of what they approximate to be what you would have received over the year that you were not able to work while waiting.

Since I was homeless my case was expedited, I was over 60 even then, and the full length of time that it took was 9months from the interview, at which time I was already homeless. They even called me on a Saturday to tell me that I had been accepted, no court, no lawyer. I thought it was a prank call until I realized it was the same nice lady I had spoken to the first time I applied six years prior... and it was true. It was the medical review with fresh MRIs that did it. I was also told that rather than claim a specific time and place disability, claim that it is "cumulative" in nature and therefore no one particular party - like an employer - is to blame. I did that since the injury was now old and I have other issues that compound my inability to hold a job.

It is hard to wait and your individual circumstances are always a main factor but so is the way you go about presenting your case. Good luck!

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