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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    157

    Default SSI Date of Disability

    Hello all,

    I'm getting ready to complete an application for SSI online, for my 46 year old brother.

    He suffered a stroke on 3/8/19, which left him paralyzed on the right side. He is currently in rehab after hospitalization for the stroke. He found out he is diabetic and has high blood pressure, while in the hospital.

    Prior to the stroke, he had not worked in 10 or 11 years.

    He was diagnosed with schizophrenia around 1998, I believe. He had an involuntary stay in an institution after his diagnosis.

    He was on medication and managed OK until 2008, holding down full time employment. He worked an unskilled assembly job at a factory and in retail. He has no high school diploma and no specific job skills.

    He lost his job and medical insurance in 2008, refused any help to get back on his medication, and lapsed back into mental illness.

    He had one or two very short term involuntary hospitalizations for his mental illness afterwards. Last one was around 2010 or so.

    He has always lived with our parents. Dad passed in 2005, and Mom unfortunately just passed yesterday. So getting him an income source is urgent now.

    My question is regarding the date of disability onset. Should I go back to the date he first was diagnosed with schizophrenia? The date of his most recent hospitalization for mental illness? Or would it be best to use the date of his stroke?

    I don't remember the specific dates of his mental illness hospitalizations. Also, the institution he was first placed in has long since closed. It was the county psych hospital, and I don't know where their records were sent.

    I realize we may need the assistance of an attorney, but I thought I'd attempt to get help here first.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Posts
    2,989

    Default Re: SSI Date of Disability

    With SSI there are no retroactive benefits. If there is enough medical and non medical evidence to approve him for SSI. The soonest he might be eligible would be the month after his SSI application is filed. Someone from your local SSA office will contact you for his financial proof.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    157

    Default Re: SSI Date of Disability

    Thank you Mercy. That is helpful.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    California
    Posts
    1,031

    Default Re: SSI Date of Disability

    I think you should reapply for SSDI as well as file for SSI. And actually, SSA is supposed to make a new formal decision about SSDI for all new SSI recipients. Onset date is his last day of work in 2008. That is the honest answer.

    Some of his old medical information may be contained in his old electronic claim file (although it could be a paper file). He may have been insured for SSDI up to five years after he stopped work, possibly 2013. If he was on medication in 2008 when he lost his job, there had to be a prescribing physician. Did he use the same pharmacy as his parents?

    If he has a remote Date Last Insured (the last time he met the earnings requirement), the SSDI case becomes difficult to approve, but there are many benefits to going through the process. Primarily earlier entitlement to Medicare instead of just Medicaid, and maybe more cash income each month with future restrictions. And the only way to know, is to go through the process and see what SSA can find out and decide. It could even be worth it to appeal further, if denied SSDI. Hard to know without doing it.

    Depending upon how severe the stroke was, DDS sometimes is required to wait until three months post event before they are allowed to make a decision. It is also possible that DDS could decide he meets a presumptive disability finding, which allows them to pay him for six months without an official decision. https://secure.ssa.gov/apps10/poms.nsf/lnx/0423535001

    Learn as much as you can. Your brother may also require someone to manage his money, a representative payee. You would be a good choice, although he can also hire an agency. Family gets complicated sometimes.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    157

    Default Re: SSI Date of Disability

    Thank you Janke, I appreciate all of the information!

    I completed the disability application online on the SSA website, and I put the approximate month he last worked in 2008 as the disability onset date.

    Are there separate applications for SSI vs SSDI? Or does the SSA automatically review for eligibility for both?

    That's a good question about the pharmacy. I don't know which pharmacy he used back then. My mother had been using a mail order pharmacy for her prescriptions over the past 5 or 6 years before she passed. I'm thinking she and my dad used Walgreens prior to that, because it was the only pharmacy in the neighborhood they lived in at the time.

    Another question too, please. When I completed the disability application, it gave me the address of a local SSA office to send medical records to.

    What would any medical providers require, to release my brother's medical records to me, with HIPAA laws? My brother can't sign any release forms, with no use of his right hand. No one in the family has power of attorney or guardianship over him.

    I do have a release of information form from the SSA, but I'm thinking it would be faster to submit records myself.

    Noted about the rep payee as well. I certainly understand.

    Our mother had a bit more life insurance than we thought, so we're going to save what's leftover after her burial to pay for our brother's living expenses until when or if he is approved for SSI. But I definitely understand he will likely need help managing his money when or if he is approved.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Posts
    2,989

    Default Re: SSI Date of Disability

    Be sure his assets do not exceed $2,000. His income cannot exceed $791 a month if he is not working. Does he have burial insurance ? Any cash he receives that exceeds $20 a month will reduce his monthly SSI.

    Are you his court appointed guardian ? If you are not. His doctors cannot release his medical records to you without his direct consent. SSA will need his signature on the release form for medical records. SSA will get his medical records. You do not have to worry about that.

    Can he sign the release form with his other hand ? If there are witnesses that also sign stating that is his signature. It should be ok. Does he know you are submitting a disability application for him ?

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    157

    Default Re: SSI Date of Disability

    Thank you, Mercy.

    Yes, he currently has no income and no assets. No burial insurance. We have space reserved in our mom's cemetary plot (she is being cremated and her remains buried) for him when his time comes.

    Our older brother is administrator of the life insurance policy, and is going to maintain a bank account (in his name), to pay our brother's living expenses for the time being.

    I did discuss the SSI application with my disabled brother, and he verbally consented to my applying on his behalf. He may be able to sign with his left hand, although it wouldn't be legible.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Posts
    2,989

    Default Re: SSI Date of Disability

    If the bank account from the insurance policy has your disabled brothers name in it. The bank will require his social security number. SSA will do a search for bank accounts with his social security number. If it shows up. It will ve counted against his SSI. So you need to be totally honest with SSA.

    You might want to look into a ABLE account for him. Was he disabled before age 26 ? Was he receiving SSI or SSDI before he turned 26 ? Was he un Special Education in school ? Do you think your mother might have kept any of his IEP papers ? Janke can probably give you more information.

    https://www.ssa.gov/ssi/spotlights/spot-able.html

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    157

    Default Re: SSI Date of Disability

    And yes, he was in special ed in elementary school in the 70s and 80s. He has a mild learning disability. We went to Catholic school, so I don't know what kind of testing they did to evaluate him or whether a formal IEP was created or not.

    I think I accidentally deleted one of my replies. I'm a bit familiar with ABLE accounts, being a Medicaid caseworker. I will look into that, thank you.

    He was diagnosed with schizophrenia at about 26. He never received SSI or SSDI in the past.

    I think, but can't remember for certain, that he had applied for SSDI once, years ago, at our older sister's urging. But if he did, he never followed through with the process, because he was off his medication, and was too paranoid to go see a doctor.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    California
    Posts
    1,031

    Default Re: SSI Date of Disability

    Not sure if SSA expanded the website to allow online SSI claims. And if so, it would be bare bones.

    On the issue of the life insurance proceeds; who is the legal beneficiary? All the children? Who is the executor? Was there a will and more distribution of assets expected? This is important since you are applying for SSI and he may be a legal heir. That may impact the SSI. It may or may not be a countable resource. This is important.

    You are going to need to discuss the signature issues with your local office. There are requirements and exceptions that might apply to your brother. He will not be the first person who cannot sign legibly and he may not even be a proper applicant for himself if he doesn't understand what it means. You should obtain some documentation of his inability to sign (letter from the doctor).
    https://secure.ssa.gov/apps10/poms.nsf/lnx/0200204003

    I think you should try to get SSA to make a presumptive finding of disability for the SSI claim (if he meets the criteria) but then be proactive in finding as much old medical information as you can while seeing if SSDI can be approved. That is not going to be easy since Date Last Insured is no later than 2013 and everything must be dated before that for SSDI. So really there will be two decisions. Is he disabled today? Was he disabled before 2013?

    You might want to have your brother sign an SSA 1696, appointing you as his rep, with no fee. Then SSA will give you access to just about everything, including his earnings record and possibly his old claim, if it is electronically saved.

    I would like to hear how this turns out, so please post updates.

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