Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Spoke with My Social Security Disability Attorney Team

Yes, I have a team of attorneys helping me win my Social Security disability claim. I decided to go with Binder and Binder when I checked out the disability lawyers in my area. They didn't have as good of record when it came to winning against the Social Security Administration. Most of them hadn't won over 60% of their cases. I couldn't take that chance. My future depends on winning my disability claim. Well...

I spoke with the lead attorney for my claim. He said that they were still waiting to hear from Social Security's Office of Disability Adjudication and Review. That name scares me! I call them "the folks that always say wait and no." It fits them well. I can't believe we are still at least two years away from finding out if they will even grant an appeal. I understand there are a lot of other disabled people needing disability, but it shouldn't take this long.

I was thrilled to find out that my two state senators and several of my congressmen have written even more letters to the Social Security Administration. My attorney told me that Binder and Binder has received copies of five different letters my legislatures have written on behalf.  I am hoping that helps. I didn't realize that they would even write letters until I called them. I was desperate and needed some help. Their offices said they would "check into it." I rolled my eyes, understanding what that meant. I was wrong. They are really doing something.

I am gathering up my latest disconnect notices from my utilities companies and the eviction notice to send to Binder and Binder. My attorney explained that, sometimes, they will speed up the process by granting me a "hardships appeal." Of course, by the time it all goes through the legal red tape, it will be weeks (if not months) down the road.

I have to wonder how many others are in the same boat I am in. I can't be the only one. I'm sure there are thousands. I read online somewhere that many people do not get an appeal because the Social Security Administration doesn't always accept addresses of homeless shelters and many people waiting for appeals are homeless.

There is something wrong with all of this. In order to even have a hearing, you have to prove that you worked long enough (and paid into the system enough) to qualify for disability. If you are denied at the hearing, that is when you must appeal. All of us have paid enough into Social Security to get disability benefits, yet we are forced into homelessness because of all the delays. Once homeless, we may not get the appeal.

All of it is frustrating. I hate calling my attorney because it seems the news is never good. However, the squeaky wheel gets the grease. I am squeaky! Speaking of being squeaky...

I'm calling my senators and congressmen again this afternoon. I might as well get squeaky with them. Again.

My attorney, as always, said, "Don't worry, Emma, we are on top of this. Concentrate on feeling better and taking care of yourself. We do this every day, several times a day, and we've been doing it for years." Not much comfort when it is winter and the electricity (our only source of heat) is about to be turned off. Of course, we are evicted, we won't have to worry about our electric bill.

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