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Posted: 10/12/2004 1:28:17 PM EST


Could use some advice or information on any assistance programs, or charities that can help me.

If anyone has any thoughts, I'd truly appreciate them an awful lot.

I lost my job in february due to some medical problems that started about three years ago. In the past couple years, I had to stop working full time, and only was able to get through 4 days a week, on light duty. Last winter was particularly hard on me and I was still missing days, and wasnt able to do a very good job at work, due to being in a lot of pain, always fatigued, and forgetting to do job tickets, etc. My boss was a good man, and tried to keep me out, but ultimately couldn't do it anymore. I don't fault him, he looked past a lot of problems and did try to help. I understand he couldn't keep doing so. We only had a half-dozen employees and I wasn't able to earn my keep, with the problems I was having for almost three years.

I'd collected unemployment for the past 6 months, but now it's run out. While i was collecting, I wasn't eligible for any medical assistance because they said I was 'making too much money on unemployment' Unfortunately, I wish that was true. I have been barely scraping by and between rent, food and trying to pay off bills that are now piling up, every dime is gone. I also couldn't afford any of my medications this entire time, since I lost my health insurance when I lost my job.

Now, that the unemployment is exhausted, I have no income at all. The state will now give me food and medical assistance, but I have no way to pay my rent... Basically I'm about to lose my apartment and will have nowhere to go as I have no family to help me.

I filed for Social Security disability, but was denied. I believe this was due to inaccurate reports given to them by a doctor I was sent to see. He is not 'My' doctor, and did nothing more than a basic physical exam. Never did he ask about my condition, symptoms, or anything of the sort.

I had the opportunity to appeal, but with no money, I couldn't afford a lawyer to help me. And legal aid turned me away, since they also said my unemployment money was above the maximum income level to qualify.

Now since I have absolutely no income, I can apply for legal aid again, and re-file for a disability claim. The thing is, the process takes months..

In the meantime, as I said, I just have no way to support myself. I have no way to pay my rent this month now, since from what I understand, the state discontinued the rent assistance programs they had recently. I can't really work in my trade (electrician) now, because of my medical problems. I haven't had any medications since february, and now I feel ten times worse than I did when I was still working and had my meds. I've tried to do some small things on my own, but after two or three hours, I'm almost always in too much pain and get really tired. I don't think I could even get a part-time job anywhere, and be able to keep it, with what's happening. Even if I could find one, I couldn't work enough hours to be able to support myself again. Everything is so expensive here it's killing me. It'd be nice to just pack up and leave, but that's not even possible as I really have nowhere to go to. Much less find money TO move....

So now I have no job, no income, and no way to be able to work again until I can get back on some stronger medications, if that even helps. The ones I had before weren't working much anymore.

I've been on my own since I was 17. Had to quit school and move out due to problems at home and essentially have no family left to ask for help. I've always somehow managed to scrape by. Never really drank, no drugs, tried to be a good person and by God's graces, was able to take care of myself even when things were really really hard. My life was starting to finally turn around I had hopes for the future, until I got 'sick' .... I'm 35 now, and over the last couple years have watched my life and almost everything I have go down the drain. I can only be thankful that I don't have a wife or children to think about, since I can't even support myself now.

Needless to say, I'm terribly worried and under a lot of stress over what's going to happen to me. If anyone here has any thoughts or advice as to where I could get some help It would really help me out. I've always relied on myself to get through hard times, but now I can't even do that. I've talked to some places like the salvation army, and they said they didn't have any way of helping, as they had no funds left this late in the year. I called the only other place the social worker here could recommend, and they aren't there but two days a week, so now I'm waiting to hear back from them.

I've never asked for help from anyone before when I had tough times, but I could always just work a little harder and pull myself out of trouble back then... Right now I feel pretty worthless and have been very depressed because I can't seem to find a way out of this mess. Any suggestions you all might have would be terribly appreciated as I'm really starting to feel like I have no options left, and am going to lose what little I still have.....


Thanks so much for any ideas.....

John

Link Posted: 10/12/2004 1:35:29 PM EST
Link Posted: 10/12/2004 1:36:23 PM EST
Whatever you do - don't get so worked up that you end up doing something stupid.

Life will get better. And sitting in jail or being dead solves nothing.

Keep your wits about you at all times.

I wish I knew what direction to point you towards but I don't.

Link Posted: 10/12/2004 1:37:05 PM EST
Sure sounds like a tough deal, John.

I wish I had a handle on all the answers, but I am afraid I don't.

Do you belong to a local church? Most churches have a "benevelonce fund" of some sort. Maybe they can help you.

You might try to think of a new type of job, one that you have never worked at before. Perhaps a change in career would enable you to work to some extent. Maybe one that does not require a lot of physical effort.

Whatever the outcome, I will remember to pray for you.

Keep your chin up.
Link Posted: 10/12/2004 1:51:16 PM EST
With the holidays coming, Lowes and Home Depot are hiring. With your trade experience, they will have a place for you.

Ct is a very high cost of living area, have you thought about heading to the sunbelt?

Link Posted: 10/12/2004 1:52:30 PM EST

Originally Posted By Old_Painless:
Sure sounds like a tough deal, John.

I wish I had a handle on all the answers, but I am afraid I don't.

Do you belong to a local church? Most churches have a "benevelonce fund" of some sort. Maybe they can help you.

You might try to think of a new type of job, one that you have never worked at before. Perhaps a change in career would enable you to work to some extent. Maybe one that does not require a lot of physical effort.

Whatever the outcome, I will remember to pray for you.

Keep your chin up.



John, O_P's got some real good ideas. Those are the exact thoughts that came to mind, also re-apply for SSI. I'm real sorry to hear things are not going well for you. I will also include you in my prayers.
Link Posted: 10/12/2004 1:56:34 PM EST
NOT BEING A WISE-ASS

Wal-Mart hires people with "medical situations".
Link Posted: 10/12/2004 1:58:37 PM EST
Sell your computer?
Link Posted: 10/12/2004 2:09:39 PM EST
What specific disorder do you have, if I may ask? It may be considered a permanent disability by the Federal Government, which would entitle you to Social Security benefits. If your doctor won't help, get another doctor. Also, there are lawyers who specialize in cases like yours...you can probably get one on a contingency fee...you can also see if there is free legal aid available in your area. You obviously have Internet access...use it...there is a wealth of info available on the Web.

Here's some links to get you started...

www.disabilitysecrets.com/
law.freeadvice.com/insurance_law/disability_insurance/denied_disabilty_benefits.htm
socialsecuritylaw.articleinsider.com/152015_social_security_lawyers.html

Good luck...DON'T GIVE UP!!!
Link Posted: 10/12/2004 2:10:00 PM EST
Thanks for the prayers... do appreciate it.

Hadn't thought about home depot, Physical labor is what's really hard for me now, so I wouldn't be much use for stocking shelves or anything like that. I guess I could go ask though..

I thought about posting in the hometown forum, but I've only seen 2 or 3 people here from CT in the year since I found arfcom.... I just didn't think I'd get many replies.

And yes, It's terribly expensive to live here....... I would consider moving, but don't have anywhere to go. or anyone 'there' so to speak.... plus with no funds, moving would be very hard now.

Really am embarassed to ask here, posting my 'life story' as I'm a pretty private person but I honestly just don't know what else to do and had hoped maybe someone here could share some advice.

Thanks again for the ideas.

John
Link Posted: 10/12/2004 2:13:32 PM EST

Originally Posted By DPeacher:
also re-apply for SSI.



NO!!! DO NOT RE-FILE! APPEAL THE FIRST ONE!
SS ALMOST ALWAYS DENIES YOU AT FIRST!
RE-FILING IS A WASTE OF TIME!!!

Link Posted: 10/12/2004 2:14:33 PM EST
Link Posted: 10/12/2004 2:14:59 PM EST

Originally Posted By BigMHoff:
Sell your computer?



It's a really old one, not worth much. only a 200mhz dell..... gets me online though.

Well, at least until they shut my internet access off which probably will happen in the next few weeks as my bills are already backed up ....

Wish I had a newer one, but never had the money for that.
Link Posted: 10/12/2004 2:20:21 PM EST
I'll second the recs to look to the private sources of assistance- mostly churches/synagogues and the like, but there are also other aid societies/organizations out there. Some are specific to certain ailments, and sometimes can help.

The .gov organizations are also a possible help, like Medicaid (or the CT equivalent)- again, what's specific to your area will be better known by the social workers and the like at the hospitals and treatment programs.

With SSDI, they definitely require you to keep at it, and almost automatically turn people down if they can at all justify it. However, if you have some real medical problems, they will eventually approve you if you keep at it.

These situations demand *real* survival skills, including budgeting/planning with very limited income, using alternative resources for food/shelter/medical care, etc. Prioritize your needs, and that'll focus your efforts.

You have to be VERY persistent with them all, though. Communicate, don't hesitate to ask for help, and follow through until you are at your goal.

Definitely a real challenge to keep it going.

Best of luck!
Link Posted: 10/12/2004 2:28:54 PM EST

Originally Posted By IamtheNRA:
What specific disorder do you have, if I may ask? It may be considered a permanent disability by the Federal Government, which would entitle you to Social Security benefits. If your doctor won't help, get another doctor. Also, there are lawyers who specialize in cases like yours...you can probably get one on a contingency fee...you can also see if there is free legal aid available in your area. You obviously have Internet access...use it...there is a wealth of info available on the Web.

Here's some links to get you started...

www.disabilitysecrets.com/
law.freeadvice.com/insurance_law/disability_insurance/denied_disabilty_benefits.htm
socialsecuritylaw.articleinsider.com/152015_social_security_lawyers.html

Good luck...DON'T GIVE UP!!!




Well, I really don't know if it's what my rheumatologist says, but he thinks it's probably Fibromyalgia Syndrome....

It started in 2001, I was finding myself tired all the time, and getting a lot of aches and soreness. I thought maybe I'd gotten Lyme disease, as the damn deer ticks are all over the place here in southwest CT...

Tests all came back negative. And since then it's gotten much worse, Yet not a thing shows as abnormal on the bloodwork he's had done.. On paper, I'm supposedly quite healthy.. Really is so frustrating.

I filed with Social Security, but was denied ( more on that in my orig. post ) The time for an appeal has run out now., as I had no money to hire a lawyer to help me appeal. I didn't qualify for any legal assistance, since they said my unemployment income was too much.

Now they tell me I can get legal help from the state, since I have no income. But Since the appeal time has passed, I'm pretty sure I'll have to re-file...

I've worked since I was 15.... never needed anything like this before. Basically I just don't know a lot of what's what... figured someone here might have had a similar experience, or know someone who did and could offer some ideas..

Thanks for the reply, appreciate it
Link Posted: 10/12/2004 2:33:01 PM EST

Originally Posted By IamtheNRA:

Originally Posted By DPeacher:
also re-apply for SSI.



NO!!! DO NOT RE-FILE! APPEAL THE FIRST ONE!
SS ALMOST ALWAYS DENIES YOU AT FIRST!
RE-FILING IS A WASTE OF TIME!!!





Well, the appeal time they stated has passed... So I assume I'll have to re-file...

Guess when legal aid gets back to me, I'll know for sure... Had no money for a lawyer before, so now with no income at all, at least I qualify for that much.... for whatever it's worth.
Link Posted: 10/12/2004 2:43:59 PM EST
[Last Edit: 10/12/2004 2:45:03 PM EST by tommytrauma]

Originally Posted By IamtheNRA:

Originally Posted By DPeacher:
also re-apply for SSI.



NO!!! DO NOT RE-FILE! APPEAL THE FIRST ONE!
SS ALMOST ALWAYS DENIES YOU AT FIRST!
RE-FILING IS A WASTE OF TIME!!!



IamtheNRA, can I ask the basis for your advice?

I am an Adjudicator with the SSA. I make my living adjudicating SSI and SSDI claims, with somewhere around 40% of my case load consisting of reconsiderations of initial denials. Your "advice" could kindly be described as misleading.

I took a look at the first site you posted a link to. The information regarding denial rates, the need for representation, etc. is wildly inaccurate.

You're offering some very damaging advice. What is your background?

JB, feel free to contact me via IM if you'd like information concernig the disability adjudication process.
Link Posted: 10/12/2004 2:49:00 PM EST
Thinking more long-term, most states have a department of vocational rehabilitation. They specialize in educating/training people who can no longer perform their old job due to disability. When i was in grad school I worked with several students who were being sent to a major university on Voc Rehab's dime.


Good Luck.
Link Posted: 10/12/2004 2:49:07 PM EST

Originally Posted By tommytrauma:

JB, feel free to contact me via IM if you'd like information concernig the disability adjudication process.



Atta boy, tommytrauma.

The AR15.com brotherhood at it's finest.
Link Posted: 10/12/2004 3:28:39 PM EST

Originally Posted By tommytrauma:

IamtheNRA, can I ask the basis for your advice?

I am an Adjudicator with the SSA. I make my living adjudicating SSI and SSDI claims, with somewhere around 40% of my case load consisting of reconsiderations of initial denials. Your "advice" could kindly be described as misleading.

I took a look at the first site you posted a link to. The information regarding denial rates, the need for representation, etc. is wildly inaccurate.

You're offering some very damaging advice. What is your background?

JB, feel free to contact me via IM if you'd like information concernig the disability adjudication process.




Thanks Tommy... Appreciate it very much, Sending you an IM.
Link Posted: 10/12/2004 3:52:08 PM EST

Originally Posted By JB69:

Originally Posted By tommytrauma:

IamtheNRA, can I ask the basis for your advice?

I am an Adjudicator with the SSA. I make my living adjudicating SSI and SSDI claims, with somewhere around 40% of my case load consisting of reconsiderations of initial denials. Your "advice" could kindly be described as misleading.

I took a look at the first site you posted a link to. The information regarding denial rates, the need for representation, etc. is wildly inaccurate.

You're offering some very damaging advice. What is your background?

JB, feel free to contact me via IM if you'd like information concernig the disability adjudication process.




Thanks Tommy... Appreciate it very much, Sending you an IM.


Back at'cha
Link Posted: 10/12/2004 9:37:57 PM EST
If anyone else has any advice to share, I'd still appreciate it very much.

TommyTrauma has been very kind to offer his experiences with the Social Security situation.

I am very grateful for his help.. And thank you to all who have replied so far.

It helps to know that there are others out there that care, even if they've never met.

Thanks so much
Link Posted: 10/12/2004 9:45:11 PM EST
[Last Edit: 10/12/2004 9:47:16 PM EST by GodBlessTexas]
John, I'll keep you in my prayers.

When is your rent due, and how much is it? Money is tight, but I can send something your way if it will help.

Remember the Alamo, and God Bless Texas...
Link Posted: 10/12/2004 9:48:22 PM EST
What about doing phone work? Sure it sucks, but not very physical. Try to find support groups in your area. Do a google search or check your phone book. There might be other therapies or treatments to try that would let you do your real work. Good luck.
Link Posted: 10/12/2004 9:52:55 PM EST
[Last Edit: 10/12/2004 9:54:06 PM EST by GodBlessTexas]

Originally Posted By JB69:
Well, I really don't know if it's what my rheumatologist says, but he thinks it's probably Fibromyalgia Syndrome....

It started in 2001, I was finding myself tired all the time, and getting a lot of aches and soreness. I thought maybe I'd gotten Lyme disease, as the damn deer ticks are all over the place here in southwest CT...

Tests all came back negative. And since then it's gotten much worse, Yet not a thing shows as abnormal on the bloodwork he's had done.. On paper, I'm supposedly quite healthy.. Really is so frustrating.



Have they checked you for issues with your thyroid? My mother had similar symptoms and it turned out her thyroid went nuts on her. She has Graves Disease, and it's possible I have it as well though I'm not symptomatic yet, as well as an autoimmune disease since my hair has been turning grey since my early 20's. I'm 28 now, and about 45% grey, though it's progressing faster each year.

Remember the Alamo, and God Bless Texas...
Link Posted: 10/12/2004 10:20:42 PM EST

Originally Posted By GodBlessTexas:

Originally Posted By JB69:
Well, I really don't know if it's what my rheumatologist says, but he thinks it's probably Fibromyalgia Syndrome....

It started in 2001, I was finding myself tired all the time, and getting a lot of aches and soreness. I thought maybe I'd gotten Lyme disease, as the damn deer ticks are all over the place here in southwest CT...

Tests all came back negative. And since then it's gotten much worse, Yet not a thing shows as abnormal on the bloodwork he's had done.. On paper, I'm supposedly quite healthy.. Really is so frustrating.



Have they checked you for issues with your thyroid? My mother had similar symptoms and it turned out her thyroid went nuts on her. She has Graves Disease, and it's possible I have it as well though I'm not symptomatic yet, as well as an autoimmune disease since my hair has been turning grey since my early 20's. I'm 28 now, and about 45% grey, though it's progressing faster each year.

Remember the Alamo, and God Bless Texas...




Honestly, I just can't remember, but I think he included thyroid in the bloodwork he had done. At least I'm pretty sure. There were lots of results, I do remember it being at least two pages.

According to him all my results cam back perfectly normal.... which was a disappointment, though I suppose that should also be a good thing, you know ? Just about every day I pretty much wish I had some 'normal' thing wrong with me.... It's so frustrating feeling so lousy with no 'real' reason..

There's some thought that Fibromyalgia syndrome is possibly an autoimmune thing as well, but there's another bunch that think it's some kind of "hypersensitivity" issue with the nervous system, and things get out of kilter, sending messed up signals of pain, etc. back to the brain...Or at least that's what I understand.

Unfortunately there isn't a whole lot of understanding about it as it's a relatively 'new' condition. And when they have no idea what causes it, naturally they have as little idea how to treat/cure it... So far all he's been able to do is treat the symptoms, without a whole lot of success. I had been on multiple narcotic pain killers, along with an anti-depressant and an anti-seizure medication (something about trying to fix the levels of neurotransmitters and such) It all helped somewhat, but much to my disappointment, not enough,

It's really been a very depressing couple years now. Things have just seemed to get worse, and losing my job plus the lack of assistance from the state, etc. has me pretty down. Just wish I could feel better and have my old boring life back again....

Hope your mom gets some relief and is doing ok.... I lost mine to cancer when I was 21, Mom's are pretty important....

Take care and thanks.
Link Posted: 10/12/2004 10:30:45 PM EST

Originally Posted By GodBlessTexas:
John, I'll keep you in my prayers.

When is your rent due, and how much is it? Money is tight, but I can send something your way if it will help.

Remember the Alamo, and God Bless Texas...




Sheesh, i couldn't ask anyone here for money. Plus my rent is 850 a month.. that's a lot. Everything is so expensive here and I just don't know when I'd be able to think about paying anyone back the way things are right now....... Already feel funny asking for advice about this. I've always been a pretty private person and don't like to talk much about the whole thing... this was really hard for me to do, I'm just at a point that I really don't know what else to do. Not being able to support yourself because of something you can't control is a lousy feeling.....

Was very kind of you to offer.. Thank you...

God bless...

Link Posted: 10/12/2004 10:42:25 PM EST

Originally Posted By Ratters:
What about doing phone work? Sure it sucks, but not very physical. Try to find support groups in your area. Do a google search or check your phone book. There might be other therapies or treatments to try that would let you do your real work. Good luck.



Done phone work for years, at my regular job... Really isn't much difference when you have to lug around tools, materials, ladders, etc. you know ? Those are the things that kill me. I end up in a lot of pain and really exhausted. I was already only working 4 days a week, and doing light stuff for quite some time at work, before I lost my job. Even then, I was still missing a lot of days when I felt lousy, and having a really bad time of it. The whole mess has really got me down... I think about the fact that it's been going on almost three and a half years now, and I just wonder what's next or what I could have done differently....

Thanks for the reply
Link Posted: 10/12/2004 11:14:16 PM EST
I believe he meant in a call center. I am a manager at a callcenter. To sum up the daily activities of a tech/sales rep/customer service agent on the phone, you basically put on your headset, listen to people complain, and type.

Now I'm not knocking your condition cause I have no clue where it hurts, but we've had people with one arm, paralyzed, severe arthritus, etc, and plenty of people that are way too overweight (hell the job put 30lbs on me). There is no physical labor at all in it. The pay is usually not that great starting out, but it isn't bad either if you land in at the right company.

Other than that, I would move as soon as you are able to. You can rent a nice 3 bedroom HOUSE down here for $500 a month.
Link Posted: 10/12/2004 11:21:55 PM EST
stick in there bro, and keep your wits about you. God Speed
Link Posted: 10/12/2004 11:39:38 PM EST
[Last Edit: 10/12/2004 11:41:51 PM EST by sonofbp]
I've seen rock bottom.
Before I could get into the Marines I had to sell/give away everything I hadn't already sold and found a good city mens shelter.
I was very lucky to have my health.

I suggest you appeal the SS decision, find a good shelter, and a customer service/tech support type job.
Good luck, prayers sent.
Link Posted: 10/12/2004 11:48:49 PM EST
Do be afraid to see a disability lawyer. The cost to you is minimal. The process can take 8 months tho. But they have to back pay you from the filing date when approved.

FMS unfortunatly isn't completely recognized by the Disabilities Act, only about 16% of FMS patients get on SSD.

Appeal, Appeal, Appeal.

See your local pastor or priest for assistance.

As for you meds. Which scripts did the doctor give you? My wife works with a meds group that help people get them when they cannot afford them. In many cases you doctor just has to fill out a paper and send it to the pharmicudical. They'll send you a perscription card they will get you the meds for almost nothing. Using this my grandmothers meds only cost $15 a month instead of the $185 she was paying.



Link Posted: 10/13/2004 12:06:20 AM EST
Wish I could help. You are doing the right thing. Don't be shy about asking for help from all sources. Things will improve. + 1 on the moving idea. Some States have unemployment benefits for new residents. Maybe FL? Do a google search.
Link Posted: 10/13/2004 1:57:33 AM EST
My wife has fibromyalgia and there were two things that helped.

One was regular exercise. It seemed that if you get sore and don't keep your muscles stretched out, it just gets worse and worse. She did some light weightlifting and walked on a treadmill and it helped her.

Second, her doctor prescribed her sleeping pills. Fibro seems to have to do with not getting a good nights sleep, and sleep-deprived adults get the same symptoms as those with fibro. She stopped taking the pills though because she didn't like being zoned out at night.

Hope this helps.
Link Posted: 10/13/2004 3:10:39 AM EST

Originally Posted By JB69:

Originally Posted By Ratters:
What about doing phone work? Sure it sucks, but not very physical. Try to find support groups in your area. Do a google search or check your phone book. There might be other therapies or treatments to try that would let you do your real work. Good luck.



Done phone work for years, at my regular job... Really isn't much difference when you have to lug around tools, materials, ladders, etc. you know ? Those are the things that kill me. I end up in a lot of pain and really exhausted. I was already only working 4 days a week, and doing light stuff for quite some time at work, before I lost my job. Even then, I was still missing a lot of days when I felt lousy, and having a really bad time of it. The whole mess has really got me down... I think about the fact that it's been going on almost three and a half years now, and I just wonder what's next or what I could have done differently....

Thanks for the reply



I think he was referring, to say, telemarketing or some kind of phone sales job where no physical activity is involved.

If you feel that lousy where its hard even to get out of the bed in the morning.... I don't know what I could suggest.

Good luck... god bless... I hope things pick up for you.
Link Posted: 10/13/2004 4:04:52 AM EST
I was disabled by an on-the-job traffic accident in 1998. A few tips: Most disability lawyers will take a case on a contingency basis, as in no recovery/no fee. TommyTrauma, with all due respect, you are full of it as far as Social Secuirity is concerned, something like 90% of initial disabiilty claims here in PA are denied the first time. JB< GET A LAWYER and try again, and not some legal aid hack either. Look for a real disability lawyer, he will be able to refer you to a real doc and not some insurance company quack.

Take as much care of yourself as possible. I used to sleep about 6 or 7 hours a day prior to the injury, now its more like 10 to 12. I can sort of get around most days, and can live like normal about 1 day a week. FM is a bastard to prove, hang in and DO NOT GIVE UP. IM me before you lose your puter and ISP, I can leave you cntact info if you need help. Ops
Link Posted: 10/13/2004 5:33:50 AM EST

Originally Posted By yellow5:
I believe he meant in a call center. I am a manager at a callcenter. To sum up the daily activities of a tech/sales rep/customer service agent on the phone, you basically put on your headset, listen to people complain, and type.

Now I'm not knocking your condition cause I have no clue where it hurts, but we've had people with one arm, paralyzed, severe arthritus, etc, and plenty of people that are way too overweight (hell the job put 30lbs on me). There is no physical labor at all in it. The pay is usually not that great starting out, but it isn't bad either if you land in at the right company.

Other than that, I would move as soon as you are able to. You can rent a nice 3 bedroom HOUSE down here for $500 a month.



+1 On getting a call center job..pay can be decent ($25,000-$50,000) if there are incentives. You don't have to move much and the benefits are usually decent. Oklahoma (low cost of living)has a lot of the operations (Sprint PCS, Dell, AOL) and they are hiring

Link Posted: 10/13/2004 5:42:46 AM EST
Why should we have to pay your bills for you?
Get off public assistance and get a job.

Quit whining.



Link Posted: 10/13/2004 5:47:29 AM EST
Depending on your area I know that some charity orgainzations (mainly Catholic that I can think of) offer help on a temp basis. There is one of these places next door to the building I work in. Always see mainly what appear to be single/young mothers with children and they distribute food regularly. I almost shit when someone told me that they went for assistance for rent....I never knew that they offered that kinda help. May look into something like this that can hold you down for a few months until you get things straightened out. IM me and I can help you with the name of this place (....for starters). Good Luck
Link Posted: 10/13/2004 5:50:35 AM EST

Originally Posted By BigMHoff:
Sell your computer?



OR- you can actually use your computer to make money- there are many ways out there, just RESEARCH them and find one that is compatible with your interests. THEN make sure they are legit by checking with the Attorney Gernerals office, Office of consumer affairs and the BBB.

It can be done my friend, you just got to try. GOOD LUCK!
Link Posted: 10/13/2004 7:03:26 AM EST
[Last Edit: 10/13/2004 7:03:55 AM EST by tommytrauma]

Originally Posted By Ops:
I was disabled by an on-the-job traffic accident in 1998. A few tips: Most disability lawyers will take a case on a contingency basis, as in no recovery/no fee. TommyTrauma, with all due respect, you are full of it as far as Social Secuirity is concerned, something like 90% of initial disabiilty claims here in PA are denied the first time. JB< GET A LAWYER and try again, and not some legal aid hack either. Look for a real disability lawyer, he will be able to refer you to a real doc and not some insurance company quack.

Take as much care of yourself as possible. I used to sleep about 6 or 7 hours a day prior to the injury, now its more like 10 to 12. I can sort of get around most days, and can live like normal about 1 day a week. FM is a bastard to prove, hang in and DO NOT GIVE UP. IM me before you lose your puter and ISP, I can leave you cntact info if you need help. Ops



Actually, for fiscal year 2002, (the last year I have stats for) the initial allowance rate for PA was 44% with all types of claims (Adult II, Adult XVI and Child XVI) with another 14% allowed at the reconsideration level. Considering the number of claims with no real merit that we receive, that's a pretty high allowance rate. The LOWEST rate in the country was hit by the state of KY in 1996, with a 30% initial allowance rate. (People tend to assume that only truly disabled Claimants apply, and that our allowance rate should be higher. You would be amazed at how high a percentage of claims come in with allegations like hemorrhoids, gingivitis, etc.)

At the Initial and reconsideration level, Attorneys simply have no effect on the decision unless a Claimant is incapable of completing the application forms themselves. They file the exact same paperwork that a Claimant without representation does themselves. As I explained to JB via IM, Attorneys get 25% of a Claimant's back benefits if benefits are awarded. I have seen instances where a Claim was denied at the reconsideration level as a 'failure to cooperate' due to an Attorney's actions. The claim then goes to an administrative law judge, which stretches out the adjudication time, makes the back benefit payment amount larger, and thus makes the Attorney's fee larger. An Attorney can be quite helpful at the ALJ hearing level, but really doesn't serve a purpose otherwise.

The amount of disinformation concerning SSI and SSDI floating around is staggering. "They deny everyone the first time" and variations of that theme is probably the most common and least accurate. The idea that any state denies 90% of all initial claims is ludicrous. There are some severe problems with the program. As a matter of fact, you have to work within the program for a couple of years just to start to grasp how screwed up it is. But... the crap that you hear about everybody being denied the first time, etc. is just that, crap. If anyone wants to hear my tirade titles 'What's wrong with the system today', buy me a cup of coffee amd I'll chew your ear off about it. But some mythical 90% denial rate isn't a part of it.

Administrative Law Judges do have a high turnover rate where our decisions are concerned. There are several factors behind this, the biggest being that we have very strict guidelines in place concerning the need for documented objective medical findings, where an ALJ is able to give much more weight to a Claimant’s direct testimony. ALJs also often allow people with conditions that aren't truly disabling. One of the most egregious examples I've seen was a 26 year old male found to be disabled due to glaucoma, despite having 20/20 vision and full fields. The ALJ stated in his decision "The Claimant will end up blind sooner or later anyway", showing a complete lack of understanding of glaucoma and possible treatments.

Ops, since you feel free to tell me and others that I'm full of it, can I ask your background and sources of information? Do you have any background other than being a frustrated Claimant? I've already shared mine.
Link Posted: 10/13/2004 8:54:18 AM EST




Have you tried to contact your local vocational rehabilitation office? They ma be able to assist you in retraining you in a line of work that you could do. Some also will send you to doctor for treatment depending on the funding in you state and your situation. It would be worth a try.

This was off of CT Voc Rehab website. This is what they offer. They will send you to college or for training depending on the circumstances.

The services BRS may provide include:

* vocational counseling

* job search assistance

* skill training and career education in vocational and other schools

* on-the-job training in business and industry

* assistive technology services such as adaptive equipment for mobility, communication and specific work activities

* vehicle and home modifications

* supported employment services

* services to assist in restoring or improving a physical or mental condition

* services to help you access other services you need in order to meet the goals of your Employment Plan, such as transportation assistance.

Wish you well.

Link Posted: 10/13/2004 10:28:27 AM EST
Call 2-1-1 (or your local United Way if 2-1-1 does not work) to find agencies in your area that can assist you.
Link Posted: 10/13/2004 10:28:45 AM EST
Since your current diagnosis is FMS, here is the national FM website. I'm sure you're aware of them, but just in case:

www.fmaware.org/


Be VERY careful about bogus treatments and supposed "cures"- there is no such thing with FMS, just good management.

I'd also add that I believe tommytrauma, but also know that the system can be frustrating and seem very unfair.

However, I also *know* that persistence pays off, so keep at it and best of luck!

Link Posted: 10/14/2004 11:32:47 AM EST
[Last Edit: 10/14/2004 11:33:07 AM EST by tommytrauma]
.
Link Posted: 10/14/2004 11:39:07 AM EST
[Last Edit: 10/14/2004 11:45:02 AM EST by Tortfeasor]

Originally Posted By JB69:

I filed for Social Security disability, but was denied. ... I had the opportunity to appeal, but with no money, I couldn't afford a lawyer to help me.






You sir, are completely full of shit. In a social security case, the lawyer gets paid IF he wins! Not before...so go troll somewhere else. (this is federal law - in my jurisdiction, lawyers fees are capped at 25% of recovery, or a max of around 5200.)

And Tommy Trauma, you are on the verge of giving some bad legal advice to the guy - he SHOULD appeal his case since if he just files a new claim, he loses all those months of backpay....
Link Posted: 10/14/2004 11:45:38 AM EST
[Last Edit: 10/14/2004 11:47:57 AM EST by sgtar15]

Originally Posted By IamtheNRA:

Originally Posted By DPeacher:
also re-apply for SSI.



NO!!! DO NOT RE-FILE! APPEAL THE FIRST ONE!
SS ALMOST ALWAYS DENIES YOU AT FIRST!
RE-FILING IS A WASTE OF TIME!!!





Yup...expect at least 2 denials. Helps if you get a dirty nasty rotten law3yer involved.


SGatr15


PS BTW, my background is the fact I dealth with the slow moving clogged cogs of the SSA for 3 years. Make copies of all paperwork, they tend to lose things alot.

Link Posted: 10/14/2004 11:47:32 AM EST

Originally Posted By sgtar15:

Originally Posted By IamtheNRA:

Originally Posted By DPeacher:
also re-apply for SSI.



NO!!! DO NOT RE-FILE! APPEAL THE FIRST ONE!
SS ALMOST ALWAYS DENIES YOU AT FIRST!
RE-FILING IS A WASTE OF TIME!!!





Yup...expect at least 2 denials. Helps if you get a dirty nasty rotten law3yer involved.


SGatr15



I agree - but the two denials are 1. the first rejection, then; 2. denial of somethin g called "recon" still on his first request... he may be confused into thinking he has to file two seperate claims and have them both denied...which is not the case.
Link Posted: 10/14/2004 11:57:15 AM EST

Originally Posted By GodBlessTexas:

Originally Posted By JB69:
Well, I really don't know if it's what my rheumatologist says, but he thinks it's probably Fibromyalgia Syndrome....

It started in 2001, I was finding myself tired all the time, and getting a lot of aches and soreness. I thought maybe I'd gotten Lyme disease, as the damn deer ticks are all over the place here in southwest CT...

Tests all came back negative. And since then it's gotten much worse, Yet not a thing shows as abnormal on the bloodwork he's had done.. On paper, I'm supposedly quite healthy.. Really is so frustrating.



Have they checked you for issues with your thyroid? My mother had similar symptoms and it turned out her thyroid went nuts on her. She has Graves Disease, and it's possible I have it as well though I'm not symptomatic yet, as well as an autoimmune disease since my hair has been turning grey since my early 20's. I'm 28 now, and about 45% grey, though it's progressing faster each year.

Remember the Alamo, and God Bless Texas...



+1 on Graves Disease -- my best friend and my brother in law both have this and had similar symptoms and runarounds with doctors.

Good luck
Link Posted: 10/14/2004 12:05:24 PM EST
IIRC you mentioned difficulty concentrating and following through on things. Even if not, please don't immediately discount my comments. Fibromyalgia and depression seem to be very well correlated, and major depression can be as debilitating as any other medical condition. Note that I said "any other" rather than "a real." Depression is indeed a medical condition. Some of the symptoms may include:
Depressed mood.
Sleep abnormality (too much or too little)
Loss of interest in normally enjoyable activities
Guilt, described as inappropriate or disproportionate to what you may have done.
Decreased energy
Difficulty concentrating
Appetite changes (again, too much or too little)
Psychomotor slowing - hard to describe, but think of moving very sluggishly/feeling like your mind and body are in mollasses.
Suicidal and homocidal thoughts are possible.

I would urge you to see another physician; there are usually free care clinics or indigent programs in hospitals. They should also have information on shelters if you are forced to leave your apartment. If you truly need a medication, there are ways to get it. For example, I've given samples and helped fill out paperwork for medication assistance. Please don't give up, and if at ANY point you start having potentially damaging thoughts toward yourself or others, get immediately to a hospital. I'm sorry I'm not in CT, or would try to find a way to get you plugged into a good system.

Keep the faith.
sleepdr out.
Link Posted: 10/14/2004 12:16:19 PM EST
[Last Edit: 10/14/2004 12:28:05 PM EST by tommytrauma]

Originally Posted By Tortfeasor:

Originally Posted By JB69:

I filed for Social Security disability, but was denied. ... I had the opportunity to appeal, but with no money, I couldn't afford a lawyer to help me.






You sir, are completely full of shit. In a social security case, the lawyer gets paid IF he wins! Not before...so go troll somewhere else. (this is federal law - in my jurisdiction, lawyers fees are capped at 25% of recovery, or a max of around 5200.)

And Tommy Trauma, you are on the verge of giving some bad legal advice to the guy - he SHOULD appeal his case since if he just files a new claim, he loses all those months of backpay....



Tort, two points; First, I never advised him to not go through the recon process. As a matter of fact, I explained that he SHOULD do so in an IM which I'll post below. (Please keep in mind that he's already said the filing date for a recon on his first claim has passed.)

Second, back benefits would only be in jepordy with a title XVI claim, and ONLY if an allowance didn't result in a reopening of the prior denial. Not likely if there wasn't a significant change in the condition. Back benefits in a title II case would go back to the established onset date, minus the 5 month waiting period.

The contents of my IM response, with emphasis added;

John,
forgive me if some of this sounds insensitive. It's worth understanding the process though.

Some less than pleasant facts; SSA defines disability as inability to perform any type of work due to a medically determinable impairment. In deciding whether a person can work despite an impairment, age plays a big role. Since you are 35 (a 'younger individual' by SSA definition), SSA would have to find that you were unable to perform even work that would allow you to sit for most of the work day, with no lifting of over ten pounds. That sets the bar pretty high. Compounding the issue is the lack of any objective medical findings to support a diagnosis of fibromyalgia.
<snip. Personal advice.>


If yu truely believe that you're completely and totally disabled, file an initial claim again. If you're denied again, file the recon in a timely manner. If you're denied at recon, file for an ALJ hearing. Don't consider a lawyer until that point. Ask your physicians for statements regarding your physical limitations, and provide those statements to the DDS.
<snip, personal information>
Someone else suggested the Departmetn of Vocational Rehabilitation. This was great advice, and well worth looking into.





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