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Midwest Disability, P.A.'s Blog

Social Security Disability and Gaps in Medical Treatment

One of the key requirements of a successful disability claim is that an individual must suffer from an impairment that has lasted, or is expected to last, 12 consecutive months.

The way to establish this is with regular treatment with medical providers, though sometimes that's easier said than done.

The first barrier that many claimants run into is cost. They need treatment, but they simply cannot afford it.

Could Social Security Monitor Your Facebook Posts?

Earlier this month, The New York Times ran an article detailing a proposal by the Trump administration to fund a program that would monitor the social media posts of individuals collecting Social Security disability payments.

Details of the proposal are sparse at the moment. Of course, Social Security examiners can already look up any publicly accessible information that claimants post on social media, but doing so is not a regular or required practice.

The mental challenges of post-war life

When they return to the United States after serving in combat, many veterans face a significant amount of serious health challenges. Some of these are mental issues, which often are not as clear-cut as physical issues. They can impact relationships, make it so that the veterans cannot return to work and change the entire course of their lives.

Some of the most common mental woes are:

  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Addiction -- especially the abuse of alcohol
  • Violent behavior

How much does Supplemental Security Income really pay?

If you qualify for Supplemental Security Income (SSI), your first question is probably simple: How much money am I actually going to receive? What does this qualification mean for you from a financial standpoint? Just how much of an impact is it going to have on your life?

While every case is different, the best way to look at this is by examining the maximum amounts. Of course, the word maximum is the key here. Do not assume that this is what you will get. However, it does give you a starting place, and the exact details of your case can then be taken into account.

Employment as a Fast Food Worker May Not Be Substantial Gainful Activity

I can never forget my first experience as a fast food worker. No matter what shift I worked or at what station, I always came home smelling of grease. I was occasionally burned by a hot grill or had fingers smashed unloading boxes of frozen food. Even as I continued through my twenties, full-time hours were never offered. I believe this was a common experience for many fast workers then, and still holds true today.

A Closed Period of Disability

A closed period of disability is a period with a beginning date and a definite ending date established by the adjudicator. A claimant may be entitled to a closed period of disability if the evidence shows he or she was disabled for a continuous period of at least 12 months but is no longer disabled at the time of adjudication.

Can you get Social Security Disability for a broken limb?

Accidents happen and it doesn't take much more than a trip over a curb to wind up with a broken limb -- or maybe two broken limbs. If you suddenly find yourself with both arms or both legs in a cast, however, you can't count on Social Security Disability benefits to help you out unless there are extenuating circumstances.

Why won't Social Security usually help you out with a disability benefit for a broken limb? Unlike disability programs through private insurers, there's no such thing as "temporary" Social Security Disability. The system is only designed to pay benefits to people whose disabilities are:

  • Expected to last a minimum of 12 continuous months
  • Expected to end in death (like terminal cancer)

Addressing the Judge at your Disability Hearing

Prior to your disability hearing, your attorney will likely make clear to you that it is a very informal type of proceeding. There will not be an adversarial attorney cross-examining you and trying to prove that you are not disabled. You will not have to "take the stand" and sit in a witness box. Your attorney is not likely to object to anything being said in court. In other words, it is hardly an episode of Law and Order. 

Congenital Heart Disease and Disability Benefits

Under the regulations followed by the Social Security Administration, there are a two ways that an individual suffering from congenital heart disease may be approved for disability benefits.

The Social Security Administration will grant disability benefits to individuals suffering from an impairment that meets or equals a "Listing" in the regulations that the Administration must follow. There are listings for numerous conditions that encompass all body systems as well as mental disorders. Meeting a listing generally requires more than a mere diagnosis, though. In order to meet or equal a given listing, there are usually numerous diagnostic criteria that must be established through the claimant's medical records.

Questions your doctor may ask about memory loss

If you're struggling with memory loss, it could be from aging, a disease or an injury. There are many potential conditions that lead to both long-term and short-term memory loss, which could represent a disability. If you've become concerned about the issues you've noticed, or if a loved one does, you may need to go to the doctor to get a diagnosis.

At this time, your doctor is going to ask you a series of questions to see what's going on. Some of these questions may include the following:

  • When did you first start noticing that you had issues with your memory?
  • Do they seem to be getting worse or staying the same?
  • Do you consistently take any supplements, medications, over-the-counter (OTC) drugs or prescription drugs?
  • If you do, did you start any of them recently or have you been taking them for a long time?
  • Do you drink alcohol or use any other types of drugs?
  • Have you gotten injured in any sort of accident recently, like a car accident, a fall or a workplace accident?
  • To deal with these memory problems and the impact on your life, what coping tactics have you used?
  • Do your memory issues make you feel anxious or depressed?
  • Are there any other physical or mental ailments you need to report?
  • Have you gone through any stressful events, like the loss of a loved one?

MIDWEST DISABILITY office locations

Midwest Disability, P.A.
408 Northdale Boulevard Northwest
Coon Rapids, MN 55448
Toll Free: 888-351-0427
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