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Old 06-07-2010, 05:20 PM   #1
msjasmine
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Default overwhelmed and need help choosing an atty

Hi,

I became very ill 5 years ago, now I am completely bedridden, can't walk, can't use my arms, anxious and depressed and can't think too clearly.

I applied a few years ago and was denied. I want to apply again, and I am also wondering if I can reopen the previous application (denied around 2 years ago)

I am too sick to deal with the application process on my own, does anyone have any suggestions for choosing an attorney? there are so may national firms when you do an internet search, like disability group, disability guide, allsup, binder, etc I don't know where to begin.

Also does anyone know how to reopen an old application?
Thanks for all the help.
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Old 06-08-2010, 12:10 AM   #2
Hoosier_Daddy
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Not sure about reopening an old claim. But I will tell you that Allsup helped me tremendously. I would not of won it it were not for them. They do everything for you. You only call them when you have doctor updates or changes in meds. They pretty much do the rest.
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Old 06-08-2010, 01:20 AM   #3
msjasmine
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Thanks Hoosier Daddy, I will look into them.

Best wishes
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Old 06-08-2010, 06:34 AM   #4
finz
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Welcome to NT Jasmine !

I know there is a limit for how long ago they will open a new claim, but I don't know what that limit is. It was just mentioned recently on this forum, so if you are able to read through a few of the older posts here, you will find it.

The law firm that I used was not a national chain, so I am sorry that I cannot make a referral in that regard.

One thing I did want to point out to you is to be very careful in the application process with what you say that you can and cannot do. For example (and I say this to caution you, not to reprimand you) if you write that you can't use your arms, they might wonder how you type on a computer or wrote out the application. It would be important to note that a friend or relative did that for you. In my case, I have difficulty with raising my arms. Technically, I CAN do it, but it increases my pain. I can type for a few minutes (as I am to writing this) I sometimes use voice recognition software, but I don't have a seperate microphone, so leaning in close to speak in my laptop mike strains my neck and increases my pain. In my case, it would be misleading to say that I can't use my arms.

Mind you, I'm a little paranoid about such things because I am also WC and they LOVE to 'catch' us on things like that

The documentation on a SSDI is critical.....both what you write and what your doctors say. Are you receiving regular care from a MD and does his/her documentation also reflect how debilitated you are ? If you are bedridden and can't get to a doctor, you would obviously be disabled, but wouldn't have the medical documentation to prove it.....a very tough spot to be in and one SSDI would deny a claim for.

I found having a lawyer to be a godsend with the SSDI process. Sometimes my brain is functioning well and other times the brain fog takes over and makes it impossible to concentrate on filling out the paperwork, getting medical records to SSDI, and all of that stuff.

Hang in there ! You have new friends here now who understand how difficult this journey is
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Old 06-08-2010, 12:06 PM   #5
walkerslbje
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Default i reopened a case but it was less than a year

hi there, I'm sorry to hear about all your problems i suffer from a bad back 3 bad disks a failed global fusion on L-5 S-1 and have alot of problems with my legs from my low back i may end up in a wheelchair at some point but for now i get by just alot of pain every day! i just had my court date like 3 months ago and the judge opened a case that had been closed in Oct of 06 but i refiled like 6 months later so my back pay went back to Feb of 06 witch was so nice to get the extra money on my lump sum checks i did see that someone put info that said something about there being 4 years max to reopen a case i just dont remember what the conditions were for the 4 years the best thing is when you pick your atty is to tell them that you filed before and if you have the papers make sure you bring them with you also my judge said the main reason he granted my approval was because i had medical records going back 10 years and that i see my Dr. every month and my Dr filed out a paper that you can get from your atty that stated why i could not work and all my limitations i know that is why i won my case so if you have a Dr make sure you tell him or her that you are filing for ssdi and ask if they would fill out that limitations paper and i would ask him/her if they thought you could work or not if they say no then you are on the right road good luck with your case i hope some of this makes sense to you it's all hard to fig out and im no expert just going off my case you know so its just my opinion not fact! you take care ,

walkerslbje
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Old 06-08-2010, 06:44 PM   #6
msjasmine
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Thanks finz for your kind message. You are right, what I meant is I can't lift my arms ( I can put them straight out but not lift), so its hard for me to get dressed, I can't pick up a pot or pan, I can't cover myself with a blanket, things like that.

I am in the situation you mentioned with not good drs documentation. For years I didn't go out of the house except to drs appt, I have to get a ride up to the door and as soon as I get out of the car be in a wheelchair (the hospitals here have people who transport you in a wheelchair to the appt), I can't use a wheelchair by myself because of my arms. Anyway, I don't have insurance and transportation is too difficult so I haven't gone to the drs for awhile (they had no hope for me even when I was going).

I tried to call some lawyers and they said I should get some current drs notes and then call them, they won't take the case without me having current letters, so it is a problem. I am in the same boat as you with the concentration, I have big piles of mail from the last few years I haven't opened, I just can't think straight and am too depressed and anxious even to read a letter or talk on the phone.

Anyway, I looked on the internet and it looks like the time limit to reopen depends on a bunch of things but within 1 year it seems easy to reopen but still doable within 4 years for disability if you show a good reason. In any case I think I need a lawyer to help with this.

I really appreciate your kindness and encouragement, just trying to find a lawyer I am already frustrated and feel so hopeless.
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Old 06-08-2010, 06:46 PM   #7
msjasmine
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Quote:
Originally Posted by walkerslbje View Post
hi there, I'm sorry to hear about all your problems i suffer from a bad back 3 bad disks a failed global fusion on L-5 S-1 and have alot of problems with my legs from my low back i may end up in a wheelchair at some point but for now i get by just alot of pain every day! i just had my court date like 3 months ago and the judge opened a case that had been closed in Oct of 06 but i refiled like 6 months later so my back pay went back to Feb of 06 witch was so nice to get the extra money on my lump sum checks i did see that someone put info that said something about there being 4 years max to reopen a case i just dont remember what the conditions were for the 4 years the best thing is when you pick your atty is to tell them that you filed before and if you have the papers make sure you bring them with you also my judge said the main reason he granted my approval was because i had medical records going back 10 years and that i see my Dr. every month and my Dr filed out a paper that you can get from your atty that stated why i could not work and all my limitations i know that is why i won my case so if you have a Dr make sure you tell him or her that you are filing for ssdi and ask if they would fill out that limitations paper and i would ask him/her if they thought you could work or not if they say no then you are on the right road good luck with your case i hope some of this makes sense to you it's all hard to fig out and im no expert just going off my case you know so its just my opinion not fact! you take care ,

walkerslbje
Hi Walkerslbje,

Thanks so much for your message. I'm so sorry for your health problems but I'm glad you got your benefits. Thanks so much for your encouragement and best wishes to you and your family.
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Old 06-13-2010, 05:44 AM   #8
finz
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Do you have health insurance Jasmine ?

As difficult as it will be to arrange, you have to get to a doctor. Not just an ER visit, but a doc who can follow your case

Bad day right now, I'll write more later.
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Old 06-13-2010, 02:47 PM   #9
Hoosier_Daddy
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What you can do is call an attorney and explain your situation to them and see what they tell you. This is what I did with Allsup. They answered all my questions for free.
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Old 06-14-2010, 10:09 PM   #10
msjasmine
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hoosier_Daddy View Post
What you can do is call an attorney and explain your situation to them and see what they tell you. This is what I did with Allsup. They answered all my questions for free.
thanks Finz and Hoosier Daddy.

I contacted Allsup and they sent me something saying I should have my old work records, etc when I talk to the Allsup rep, I have been to ill to track all that info down, before I was sick I worked in a lot of different jobs and I don't remember exact dates, phone numbers of bosses, etc. So I guess I will have to try to get the energy to do that, as I will need it for the appliation anyway.

I've just been too frustrated and overwhelmed to deal with it yet. I talked to some lawyers they said you can reopen a claim but it is hard to that, they said I need good documentation from docs. but one of the main reasons I wanted the disability was to get Medicaid so I can go to the doc.

I've been trying to get doc appts but its really hard with no insurance or medical coverage, they want payment upfront generally. Plus I have been to so many in the past who basically said there is nothing they can do for me, there is no cure for my condition. So I have to pay alot of money upfront just to hear that again, its is a waste. At my ER followup visit I did ask them again if they could do anything and they said no unfortunately no cure, I asked if I could have an appt to discuss my chronic problems, the doc said make another appt but of course when I went to make an appt the receptionist said no (because no medicaid or insurance) If I get medicaid then I can go, but I can't get medicaid without going. . .

I dont think he even documented this conversation in the chart, as I was just there for ER followup, it was not a doctor who had seen me before, just a resident doing ER followups who only spent about a minute with me.

Thanks for all the support. Finz I hope you feel better.
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