Social Security Disability:

How To Apply; How To Win

Search

Disability According To Social Security

Congress has defined disability as the "inability to engage in any substantial gainful activity by reason of any medically determinable physical or mental impairment which can be expected to result in death or which has lasted or can be expected to last for a continuous period of not less than 12 months. To meet this definition, you must have a severe impairment, which makes you unable to do your previous work or any other substantial gainful activity which exists in the national economy. To determine whether you are able to do any other work, we consider your residual functional capacity and your age, education, and work experience."

From this definition has emerged a standard set of questions which must be asked of each claimant (the person who is applying).

1. Is the individual gainfully employed? The answer to this must be "no."

2. Is there a severe impairment (or group of impairments) which exist?

3. Will the impairment(s) last at least 12 months or result in death?

4. Does the impairment meet any of the standards set by SSA as being severe enough to grant disability?

If questions 2, 3, and 4 above can be answered "yes," then that person will be awarded benefits. If all of the above questions, except number 4 can be answered "yes," then several more questions must be asked. If the answer to number 4 is "no," then SSA must ask:

5. Can the individual perform any of the work s/he has done in the last 15 years? If the answer to this is "yes," then that person is considered not disabled. If the answer to number 5 is "no," then SSA must ask:

6. Given the limitations of the individual's impairment, are any of the skills s/he learned in past work able to be used in another occupation that would require very little retraining? If the answer to this last question is "yes," then that person is not disabled. If the answer is "no," then s/he must be found disabled.

All of the above is based on certain definitions, assumptions, and conditions which pertain to age,education, work experience, and residual functional capacity.

Age

In general, SSA operates on the assumption that the older one gets, the less able s/he is to learn new skills. An individual under the age of 50 is referred to as a "younger individual." Ages 50 to 54 are called "closely approaching advanced age;" 55 and over is "advanced age," and ages 60 to 64 are called "closely approaching retirement age."

Education

SSA makes the assumption that the more education one has, the better able s/he is to make adjustments in jobs. Conversely, the less education, the less able one is to adjust. So if one has a severe impairment, and cannot read or write, s/he should be found disabled.

Education through the 6th grade or less is termed "marginal;" 7th grade through the 11th is "limited." If one has a 12th grade education or a GED, then the question remaining is whether or not s/he has done work which permits entry into another group of jobs which require many of the same skills as s/he was doing before, or less.

If there are jobs in the economy which are related in skills to the one(s) s/he was doing within the last 15 years, and which s/he is determined capable of doing given the limitations imposed by the impairment(s), then s/he will not be found disabled.

 More



Blogroll

  • Broke Last year the Social Security Administration sent $127.7 billion to those determined disabled but took in only $104 billion in Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI). Deficits began draining the trust fund in 2005 and are expected to be exhausted by 2017
  • Account Overdrawn Just as when individuals spend beyond their means to repay, so too, do states and nations. "Washington's public debt is nearly $8.5 trillion, which comes to about 58% of the U.S. economy, compared with ratios exceeding 100% in places like Greece.
  • The End of Healthcare Make no mistake about it: socialized medicine is medical treatment at the point of a gun. Under a single payer government plan, medical decisions will be taken out of doctors' hands and relinquished to the arbitrary whims of government.
  • Vet Falsely Accused An atmosphere of suspicion and distrust was created even before Bill arrived at the meeting with Social Security's consulting psychiatrist, Dr. F. Bill called him from the road to tell him he was on Key Bridge and would be a few minutes late.
  • Our Deceptive SSA An audit of the Social Security Administration by the Office of the Inspector General (OIG) two years ago uncovered some very disturbing and damning facts. Among them are: Hundreds of pieces of unopened mail;


  • The Good, Bad, & Ugly Over many years I have seen a lot of representatives ask questions about the numbers of jobs vocational experts (VEs) testify to under a set of limitations the ALJ accepts. However, the latest dialogue among representatives has confirmed for me


  • Do The Math For the purpose of constructing a model which excludes the fact that the number of workers (who pay the bill) is less than the number of retirees (who collect via SSA from the workers), consider the following: Start with an eighteen-year old


  • Backlog Crisis The latest processing times for Social Security disability cases have hit new all-time highs. The average lengths of time up to May of 2008 for Social Security disability claimants to get a hearing after a hearing is requested, has been received from the Social Security Administration through


  • Safety Net Knot David Michaelis of Chewala, WA, felt the symptoms of a rare neuromuscular disease in October of '02.The condition causes involuntary movements of the head and neck, which destroys the ability to coordinate eye-hand movements.


  • I AM NOT A CROOK


  • Disable Social Security Chile's Social Security system is based on individual freedoms - economic, social and political - and is a much more prosperous and lively society.


Follow Us


Soc

Blog Post

Do The Math


For the purpose of constructing a model which excludes the fact that the number of workers (who pay the bill) is less than the number of retirees (who collect via SSA from the workers), consider the following:


Start with an eighteen-year old entering the workforce today earning a $10,712 annual minimum wage until retirement at age sixty-seven. 10.6% of his wages would be paid into payroll taxes for the retirement portion of Social Security ($1,135/year). If 100% of his previously forced payments were instead paid into a private account at a 6% constant-dollar rate of return (which is below the historical norm) then this yields a $359,406 retirement fund.


If we apply the government's Thrift Savings Plan calculator http://www.tsp.gov.with its historically low 4.25% annuity interest rate, the fund can buy a lifetime annuity paying $2,073/month, with COLA, which is more than twice what the worker earned while working.


On the other hand, Social Security promises about $590/month, 72% less than the private example. This individual would only get $413 per month - 20% of the private annuity.


So, Social Security is actually detrimental to the very people it purports to help. The Social Security Act was made a law on the basis that it would provide a safety net to those who are too old or too sick to work. But, as demonstrated above, the opposite is true; it cripples the very people it is supposed to help.


Social Security Disability Self-Evaluation

an image

Here's a short quiz that will help you determine what your chances are of being found disabled.

Here














News