Your Credibility

Most people who file for disability benefits are truly in need of help, and honest. But some people are less than completely honest. Some people exaggerate their medical problems. And some people even make stuff up. Exaggerations and false statements cause a couple of problems, the biggest is, YOU LOSE CREDIBILITY.

Your credibility is a significant factor in evaluating your claim for benefits.

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Your diagnosis will not get you approved for disability benefits

Most people think if they can prove they have a medical condition, that should be enough to get approved for Social Security disability. But it’s not the diagnosis by itself, it’s how that condition affects you personally.

Let me give a few examples. Compare two applicants, both were diagnosed with diabetes.

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Robert M. Ball, former Commissioner of Social Security dies…

Robert M. Ball, 93, commissioner of Social Security under three presidents who was a major player in virtually every development of the old-age and disability insurance field for the past 60 years, died of congestive heart failure January 29 2008.

Mr. Ball was described by American Scholar magazine in 2005 as Social Security’s “biggest thinker, longest-serving commissioner and undisputed spiritual leader . . . . Social Security’s chief advocate and defender.”

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Definition of disability for Social Security benefits

The shortest version of the disability definition is “unable to work.” Of course, it’s much more complicated than that. And you actually can be approved for disability while working, as long as the work is not “substantial.” Social Security considers 5 things in evaluating your claim. They are, #1-work, #2-severity, #3-on the list?, #4-usual work, #5-other work.

If you have a clearly severe condition, like paralysis, or terminal cancer, they use the 5 steps, but the decision process is quick and easy. It’s when your condition is not that obvious they go through the 5 step decision process in detail. Note that you must be unable to do both your usual work and other work to be approved.

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