Applying for Disability

Members have asked about Disability and the guidelines that are set that makes one eligible. Click here for the guidelines: https://www.ssa.gov/disability/professionals/bluebook/3.00-Respiratory-Adult.htm#3_07 Bronchiectasis, COPD, Asthma, Pulmonary Fibrosis, Pulmonary Hypertension & Lung Transplant all qualify. The link above includes the charts they use to gauge the extent of your illness. Keep records of everything. That means doctor reports, medications and their side-effects i.e. brain-fog, muscle aches twitching or heart palpitations. State that you are fearful of catching colds, flues, etc. (because these can land you in the hospital). State if you are suffering depression or anxiety from battling chronic illness (this can also be another side effect to medications). Describe the chronic fatigue from bronchiectasis, shortness of breath, and loss of sleep from night sweats. All of these make it difficult to maintain good work performance; not to mention dragging your body down further. Describe the medication and nebulizing schedule (that is hard to fit into a workday). State if you cough non-stop all day. You must build your case. Not all will want to go on Disability, but may opt to work from home to accomadate their situation. If you decide to file for it, remember, the sooner you apply, the sooner will get it.

@michelecallahan

I finally got approved for disability….about 2.5 years after applying. I was denied twice, then hired a lawyer. A lawyer will get 25% of your back pay up to $6,000 maximum. So mine got it approved and she got $6,000 of my back pay. It was worth it to finally get it approved. File as soon as you can, because it does take a while. Document EVERYTHING. Keep a daily journal of your symptoms, how you feel, doctor appointments, etc. I had over 200 appointments at Mayo in 2017, documentation of everything, diagnosed with CHF, myocarditis, fibromyalgia, had 9 hospital stays in one year, and still got denied twice. I think they hope you just give up. Don't give up. It's very frustrating, but stick with it. When you do get approved, you get back pay. I got approved about a month ago, got my back pay, and got my first monthly check this week. Yea!! It doesn't replace the 6 figure income I was making, but it does help. I'm happy to answer any questions.

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I would like to add a word of caution about the wait period after you have filed. Do not make the mistake that I did. I worked as a temp for one month to fill in for an employee who was recovering from surgery. All I had to do was sit at a desk and greet customers.This was to help a friend. I had no idea that it was not going to be off the books, or that it would effect my back pay. That one month of working caused me to lose $20,000 in back pay.

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@windwalker

I would like to add a word of caution about the wait period after you have filed. Do not make the mistake that I did. I worked as a temp for one month to fill in for an employee who was recovering from surgery. All I had to do was sit at a desk and greet customers.This was to help a friend. I had no idea that it was not going to be off the books, or that it would effect my back pay. That one month of working caused me to lose $20,000 in back pay.

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@windwalker Good advice. The mistakes we make that are costly are so annoying.
JK

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@windwalker

I would like to add a word of caution about the wait period after you have filed. Do not make the mistake that I did. I worked as a temp for one month to fill in for an employee who was recovering from surgery. All I had to do was sit at a desk and greet customers.This was to help a friend. I had no idea that it was not going to be off the books, or that it would effect my back pay. That one month of working caused me to lose $20,000 in back pay.

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That’s crazy to be penalized like that.

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