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Crowd source online funding campaigns are getting increasingly more popular these days.  While we first saw these services used for new inventors trying to raise the money to develop prototypes and get their new ideas to markets, we now typically see these funding campaigns when someone becomes serious ill or a family suffers some other type of tragedy.

cashWhile these online funding campaigns can certainly be helpful and can result in a lot of money being raised, they can also result in the termination of Social Security Disability Income (SSDI) benefits, according to a recent report from AOL News. Continue reading →

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People who receive Social Security Disability Insurance benefits will want to research their rights if they plan on moving out of the country. People who relocate or travel for extended periods of time out of the country may be at risk of losing those benefits. Whether your benefits are jeopardized will depend on the type of benefits you receive.

There are three different programs that the U.S. Social Security Administration is responsible for administering.  The largest program in term of recipients and budget is the Social Security Old Age and Retirement benefits.  This is the program that workers pay into by having money deducted from their paychecks. This is part of the Federal Insurance Contribution Act (FICA) that is listed on your pay stub and is technically different from income tax.  The reason it is different is because FICA money is apportioned between SSA funds, and the IRS tax money is largely put into in the nation’s general fund.

deniedWhen you reach the age of retirement, you are entitled to a monthly benefits check.  While the age when you can legally retire and claim benefits keeps going up, you can retire earlier, but you must take at least a 25 percent reduction in your benefits. You can also provide for your spouse if he or she survives you, but that requires a reduction in payment. Continue reading →

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According to a recent news article from WPRI News, a brave veteran from North Attleboro has returned from war only to a face another kind of battle – this one in his home state.  This was a battle of bureaucracy and red tape in several different governmental agencies as he tried to get a full and appropriate award of disability benefits.

armyHe is a veteran of the U.S. Army National Guard in the 101 Division. and he had served several tours in the Middle East as part of the Global War On Terrorism and related campaigns.  In 2007, he was in his barracks on the outskirts of Bagdad when the enemy began firing rockets at his position.  These rockets were designed to break up into shrapnel, and he was hit with several very large pieces of shrapnel.  When they extracted two of the metal pieces, they measured over four inches long and three inches wide.  He said that the one big piece of shrapnel took him out and split his right leg in half.  He was able to avoid an amputation, but it took 17 separate operations to save the leg.  At this point, he was granted a medical retirement from the military.  Continue reading →

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In Gutierrez v. Colvin, a Social Security Disability Insurance case from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, there was no question claimant could lift no more than five pounds.  She could also not lift her right arm above her shoulder, but her left arm was perfectly fine.

gavel211When she first applied for SSDI benefits, her application was denied. This is nothing out of the ordinary, as the vast majority of all applications are denied.  Once the U.S. Social Security Administration denied her application, she took her first step in the appeals process. Continue reading →

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According to a recent article from GoUpstate.com, Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits are a lifeline to those who are too young to retire, but can no longer able to work due to an injury or illness. The article takes a look at what happens when you work for a living for many years and that hard work takes a real toll on your body and you can no longer work and earn an income.

948188_learning_with_pencilThere are some that suffer a muscle and skeletal breakdown for many years of working.  Others will become sick with an acute illness, such as cancer or organ failure, have a stroke, or be in a car accident.  While there are possibly lawsuits that can be filed and workers’ compensation, you may eventually be out of options and need help to make ends meet. Continue reading →

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Most people do not think warmly of the U.S. Internal Revenue Service (IRS).  However, according to a recent news article from The Los Angeles Times, the IRS could take action that will instantly help approximately 387,000 disabled Americans who owe a great deal in student loan debt. These financial burdens are greatly exacerbated by the fact they are unable to work full-time.

pencil tipSen. Elizabeth Warren, (D-Mass.), has been urging the IRS to act by writing a strongly worded open letter to the tax-collecting agency. However, she argues that time to act may be up soon, since the GOP will control the U.S. House of Representatives, the Senate, and the Oval Office, and they are less likely to help these people out.  Political views aside, the action she is asking the agency to take would affect anyone who has been determined to be completely and permanently disabled and has an income lower than the federal poverty guideline for an individual, if unmarried, or a family of two if married. Continue reading →

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Since the surprise election of president-elect Donald Trump, many are not sure what it will mean for millions of Americans and how the U.S. will interact with the rest of the world moving forward.  Another uncertainty stems from the fact the president-elect has not said much about what he intends to do with the Social Security Old Age and Retirement program and the Social Security disability programs.

taxesAll programs are administered by the U.S. Social Security Administration (SSA), and there are actually two disability programs: the Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) Insurance and the Supplemental Security Income (SSI) program.  The SSDI program is for people who worked and paid federal taxes and are said to have paid into the system, so they can apply for benefits when they become disabled.  The SSI program is for disabled children in low-income households and disabled and blind adults and the elderly who were never able to work due to their respective disabilities. Continue reading →

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There are millions of Americans who rely on Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits each month to make ends meet, since their respective disabilities prevent them for working, according to an adjudication from the United States Social Security Administration (SSA).  There are an estimated 11 million Americans currently receiving these benefits from SSA.

pencilWhile there is no question that these two Social Security disability programs are very important, and millions of people would be impoverished without them, there are those who believe that the disability programs are nothing more than entitlements for people to sit at home and collect a benefits check because they don’t want to work. Continue reading →

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The Social Security Administration (SSA) is responsible for running the Old Age and Retirement benefits program, the Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits program and the Supplemental Security Income (SSI) program.  The Old Age and Retirement program is the benefits program that every working American will qualify for when they reach a certain age, so as long as they have worked enough years and paid enough taxes to have become eligible for benefits.  However, it should be noted that in an effort to stretch the budget and save money, Congress routinely increases the age at which someone will become eligible to receive these benefits.

cashThe Social Security Disability Insurance benefits program is for working Americans who have become disabled and can no longer work.  If they have worked enough years and have earned enough quarterly credits, they are said to have paid to into the system and can qualify for SSDI benefits. Continue reading →

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Over the past few months, the Wisconsin Watchdog has been publishing a series on the many alleged problems at the United States Social Security Administration (SSA) and its Offices of Disability Adjudication and Review (ODAR).  These problems came to light as a result of several whistleblower employees at SSA. The allegations mostly focus on the alleged misconduct of administrative law judges (ALJs) and the process by which SSA handles applications.

annual reportsThere have been allegations that one ALJ was acting in a discriminatory manner towards disabled claimants who were applying for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits, and also harassing co-workers.  This particular judge has been relieved of all of his case responsibilities, but he is still at the agency and is getting paid his normal salary, according to reports.  However, at least one of the whistleblowers who reported this alleged misconduct has been disciplined. Continue reading →