Disability Income 4 Bipolar/Depression

First of all, I’d like to thank you for providing careplace – we all need all the support we can find. I’m a newbie and have read many of your posts & questions.

I realize that medications and doctor visits are very costly - especially for those without insurance and/or incomes. I’m a member of a forum (on MSN) that you may want to check out for help in applying for or questions about Social Security Disability Income. If you have worked & paid into the Social Security Administration, you may be able to receive monthly payments for life. For information and excellent support, visit us and be sure to sign the petition for reform of the SSA system: http://groups.msn.com/SocialSecurityDisabilityCoalition/general.msnw. Let me know what you think!!!

To be approved for SSDI you must apply in person or on the web & submit medical evidence of your disability &/or medications you take. It can be a lengthy process but can be well worth the time & efforts. Some folks win their cases without a lawyer…some folks use a lawyer. If you use a lawyer, you do not pay for their services unless you win your case. Then, SSA pays the lawyer out of your backpay with a cap on the amount the lawyer is paid. You have nothing to lose & can’t hurt to try. Here’s the link to apply online: http://ssa.gov/applyfordisability/
Be sure to include all your illnesses and disabilities & tell them how these things affect your day-2-day activities. Don’t emphasize on what you can still do - rather the things you can no longer do!

I am a disabled American veteran and suffer from bipolar disorder, anxiety, IBS, post traumatic stress disorder (sexual abuse) & a host of less serious but debilitating illnesses. I applied for SSDI in Aug 2005 *but didn’t include some of these illnesses initially - not recommended. I got a denial letter (most common) in Feb 2006 & filed for a Reconsideration, which was denied in May 2006 (again-very common). I immediately filed for a court trial before an Administrative Law Judge ALJ (like so many do) & at that point secured a local lawyer who specializes in Social Security Law (recommended). I have paid the law office only $20 at the initial visit…nothing else. I have been waiting for a court date since May 2006. Because of the backlogs & lack of workforce in the system, it can take a year or two for a court date (not unusual), which is why a lot of people give up & stop pursuing their efforts for disability income. Don’t do this! Most of the cases are approved these days once you see a judge in person!! In some cases, the ALJ approves cases without a trial by reviewing the case beforehand. It’s worth it to check into it - if you haven’t already!

I hope this helps someone - if not a lot of you. Good things come to those who wait, and remember – we are disabled, but our votes count, too!

Excellent presentation. I have been denied, went for rconsideration, denied again, and then i thought I would stop there. But you gave me the push to go on. Thanks to everybody who provides such wonderful information!

Thank you so much for this information!

Thanks you for the information. I know it is greatly appreciated by many people. If anyone is like me with Bipolar and the process feels too overwhelming to even beging to comprehend going this alone, there is a company out there that will take you through the process. I secured them to handle my case and to date they have kept me well-informed of every step of the process. They completed all of my paperwork, and even contact me when Social Security contacts me for additional information (my caseworker through this 3rd party is copied on ALL communication sent to me through Social Security). Plus, if I have to go before a judge, the company provides a local representative who will prepare me for my day in court and will attend with me. The amount of stress they have alleviated me in this process is worth every cent they will receive at the time I am awarded my disability. I should add that they are not a Law Firm, but all of their specialists worked for the Social Security Administration at one point and this is all they do, is process claims. They are upheld to the goverment laws of payment in that you do no put any money out of pocket UNLESS YOU ARE AWARDED disability. Check them out at www.allsupinc.com.

Sorry to hear about your situation, and I truly understand your dilema! If I were not married to man with a good income, I’d probably be on the street myself. I would suggest you go to your state’s website and look into the laws of unemployment. In my state, you cannot draw unemployment if you ‘quit’ your job voluntarily. You can draw if you are laid off or fired. State laws can be different.

You do have to be unable to perform ANY job to be approved for SSDI. It’s sad but true. I have a friend who suffers from major depression. It took two years of not working to finally be approved for SSDI with the help of her lawyer. However, in the meantime, she lost her home, most of her furniture and could barely do anything. I would seek advice from a lawyer – perhaps a different one?
~Take care~

Thank you so much for your answers. I am going to try to apply again. Actually in Oregon, I was able to get on unemployment even though I was fired once, and several times when I had quit a job; as long as I had enough credits to qualify. The one time they tried to deny me, I repealed it, and got a judge on the phone with a three way call, and got my unemployment. But I’m not sure I’m going to go that route right now. I’m just not sure if I could go for the two years without any income from that it took for me to wait. Any way, my husband and I’m talking about it, he thinks I should wait until I get off SAIF right now, then try for SSI or SSD. Then see if I can get unemployment during the waiting period.

Yeah, I’ve noticed that a lot of people are suffering from other diseases and that they have to take depression meds to help cope with the illness. I really should count my blessings. All I have is Major Depressive Disorder, not lupus and other debilitating diseases.