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SSDI Assistance Request


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After chatting with Sheri, I'm re-posting her post from another thread.  I know several on the board have SSDI and might be able to provide some suggestions.

Hello all,

I was diagnosed with Sunct in 2012.  In 2013, a diagnosis of Local/Focal seizure syndrome was added.  In February, I filed for SSDI.  The caseworker had a difficult time finding Sunct in her system and ran my SSDI on epilepsy and Sleep apnea.  I, of course, was denied because my 13 pages of medical evidence I brought with me to my appointment was directed at Sunct.  I have been unable to drive for a few months now.  The denial said, I was not severe enough to warrant disability.  Last Friday, I went in to the hospital to do a brain map in the hopes of showing where in my brain activity is ignited.  Good news! The seizures are aura related, along with the numbness in fingers and toes, facial paralysis, and confusion.  I never knew what an aura was until last Friday.  I was on 3000 mg of Keppra and the seizure specialist said I was suppose to lower the Keppra to 500 mg 2 times a day and get CBT therapy.  I looked at her with confusion.  I possess a BA in Psychology & a minor in Criminal Justice, as well as, an MBA.  She said with CBT the aura symptoms will be improved, but, you still can not drive.  Oh, you need to go see your neuro in two weeks and poof I am dismissed.  Mind you, I am still experiencing everything I have been for the past 3 years.  The Sunct is in remission THANK YOU JESUS! 

Question: Do you think I should hire an attorney to appeal the SSDI decision?  I get so confused, I am not sure if I can do this myself. I need help!

Thanks everyone! - Sheri :-[

Thank you,


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Thanks J for reposting this.

Sherri, in Dec, 2003, I applied for SSDI for my chronic CH.  I was turned down, appealed, turned down again, appealed and after 3 1/2 yrs finally got a hearing in front of an ALJ, who ruled "fully favorable" on the spot.

I had originally gone with one of the nationally advertised SSDI attorneys.  After the second denial, I was dropped by this attorneys' office. 

I retained a local attorney who specialized in SSDI.  That would be my recommendation to you.  The local attorneys know most of the ALJs that you may draw, and if they have a reputation for only taking on solid cases, then that is a big plus.

Hope this helps.


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  • 4 weeks later...

Sherri, where do you live?

Is there a place called MHMR near you? If you're in Texas, there should be. It's called Mental Health, Mental Retardation, but they help with ALL kinds of disabilities. If you aren't in Texas, just search your state for "MHMR" and your city, and it should pull up something with resources similar.

They will, for free, fill out the paperwork you need, because they know HOW to do it. They know what disability is looking for, and obviously, the social worker had NO IDEA what the hell they wanted!

I will also advise that if you have depression along with any of your conditions, it is much easier to get it for that.

MHMR actually got one of my cousins his disability on his first try for severe COPD. Which is pretty much UNHEARD of...

We went to them for my second try, because I was 14, and  there was no chance of me EVER working. I had a list of conditions that was pretty long and was sick as hell.

You are almost ALWAYS denied the first time unless you are on a ventilator. (My Mom was, which is how I know. She was approved because, hey, give it to the people who are about to die, amirite?) Or unless you have a lawyer. You will get backpay for up to that date though. And your insurance / medicaid SHOULD retroactively cover up to then.

So, basically, you can go that route, or try a lawyer. Do whatever feels best to you. Good luck, honey! MHMR got my disability and we have recommended them EVER since, since they are free, and do it to help out anyone who needs it.

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  • 2 months later...

Hi Sheri, my name is Rob. I am so very new here though I know debilitating pain very well and sympathize for you and hope you will be recognized by SSDI soon for your situation. Pain and lifes uncertain anguish is a bad combo.

In my personal experience with SSDI I was denied, as mostly everyone is. I ended up getting an attorney and like most I was accepted. It's also relieving to know that everything is retroactive from the very first day you file. When I was denied I waited 14 months to do anything about it because I felt bad enough being so young, felt so bad, and gave up. I believe the retroactive part goes back up to 18 months.

The person you choose to represent you is very important. It's your life and rights your fighting for. I can also tell you from my personal experience once in front of an attorney I felt so worthless knowing how my life changed so dramitacally. I was nine months away from getting one of my dream cars, Magnum PI drove one. I ended up living off that money at least for a year hoping I would get better which was good (?) because SSDI would not be happy if I had a sizable bank account and rightfully so. That actually helped my situation showing honesty and having documents backing up how I did everything I could and not being greedy so my attorney said. I don't know how others felt in their reasoning for applying but if someone like myself is in need of these opportunities than the best thing to remember is that no one asked for whatever situation brought that individual to this point in life and it isn't their controll.

I hope this helps and you and your journey gets better. I'm not into cliche's so I'll end it here.

Thank you for sharing, Rob

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