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Sunday, August 28, 2016

Lawmakers Consider Expediting SSDI for People with ALS

Why is there a 5-month waiting period to receive SSDI?

While individuals with disabilities are eligible for Social Security disability benefits, there are a number of waiting periods associated with the claims process. First, there is a waiting period  from the application date until receipt of the first disability check. In light of the fact that most initial claims are denied and subjected to a series of reviews, this waiting period is often quite long.

Once an application has been approved, however, there is another five-month waiting period, and the SSA does not pay benefits during this time. Now, Congressional lawmakers are considering legislation that would waive this waiting period for people with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS).

Read more . . .

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Suit by Former NFL Player Highlights Difficulty of Proving Disability from Brain Injuries

Qualifying for disability payments because of a head trauma has always presented challenges. Brain injuries are often invisible and it can be difficult to obtain objective proof of a disability. Insurers seem especially reluctant to acknowledge the seriousness of medical complaints when the brain is involved.

Insurer Accused of Deliberately Creating Burdensome Requirements to Avoid Paying Claims

A recent lawsuit over disability benefits by Haruki Nakamura, a former professional football player, vividly illustrates the problem.

Read more . . .

Thursday, July 21, 2016

Large Insurers Accused of Fraud in Denying Disability Claim

When can a policyholder sue an insurer for its tactics in refusing to pay disability benefits?

Obtaining disability payments is difficult even in the best of circumstances. Applicants must meet countless medical requirements, obtain letters and test results from doctors, and file reams of paperwork. But the task is especially difficult when an insurer may be committing fraud.

Plaintiff Seeks Damages for Breach of Contract and Bad Faith

That is the allegation at the heart of recent disability lawsuit against Unum Group, The Paul Revere Life Insurance Company, and New York Life Insurance Company.

Read more . . .

Thursday, July 21, 2016

PBA Pushing for Disability Benefit Parity for Newer City Cops

What disability benefits are being provided for NYPD officers?

Patrolmen's Benevolent Association President Patrick Lynch has been engaged in a running dispute with New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio over disability benefits for City police officers. Currently, cops hired after July 2009 do not receive the same benefits as veterans. In fact, newer officers only receive 50 percent of their final pay for career ending injuries, while veteran officers receive 75 percent.

Now the city police union is enlisting the aid of Gov. Andrew Cuomo in a push to get the same disability benefits for newer cops.

Read more . . .

Monday, June 27, 2016

Retired NYPD Cop Convicted of 911 Disability Fraud

How much of a problem is disability fraud?

Recently, a retired NYPD officer was convicted in connection with a massive $400 disability fraud scheme. The officer was among more than 100 people who were indicted by the New York District Attorney in 2014. The retired cop filed a false SSDI application, claiming to be suffering from a mental illness. From 2005 to 2013, he collected $2,000 a month that topped out at $200,000 in ill gotten benefits.

The key players in the scheme included a retired NYPD officer, a disability consultant to the police union, an attorney and a pension consultant.

Read more . . .

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Reducing the Social Security Backlog—Will New Steps Help or Hurt?

How will procedural changes affect individuals applying for SSDI?

For those who become disabled, making ends meet can be an ordeal. And waiting for Social Security Disability Insurance benefits to be approved is another obstacle for those already coping with serious injuries or illnesses. Currently the wait time to have a new claim resolved can be as long as 17 months.

Although nine million people receive disability benefits of approximately $1000 per month, the backlog means that 1.
Read more . . .

Monday, May 23, 2016

Improving Your Chances of Being Approved for SSDI Benefits

What can you do to reduce the chances of an SSDI denial?

Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) is a benefit provided by the government to those that are unable to engage in any substantial gainful activity due to an impairment or illness. That is, make more than a certain amount of income in a month. These cash benefits are not provided automatically, and those seeking them must undergo a rigorous application process and prove that they meet certain requirements. But, not everyone meets these requirements. In fact, most claims for SSDI are denied.

Read more . . .

Monday, May 16, 2016

Need Social Security Disability Benefits? Get in Line

Why are the wait times so long for obtaining disability benefits?

Nothing is for certain, or so it's been said, and anyone can become disabled at any time and not be able to work. Fortunately, the Social Security Administration provides disability benefits to those who have a medical condition that is expected to last at least a year or result in death. That's the good news.

The bad news is that the system is plagued by a backlog of cases that cause significant delays for those who have applied for disability benefits. There have been cases where some individuals have died before their cases were even heard; and others who are suffering with debilitating physical and mental disabilities are often forced to wait in agony.

Read more . . .

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Claiming Social Security and Medicare

Can I receive Social Security and Medicare benefits simultaneously?

The Social Security Administration recently celebrated "National my Social Security Week" which was aimed at raising awareness for individuals to set up online accounts with the SSA. By so doing, they can be provided with access to their annual statements and information about their projected retirement savings, as well as their eligibility for disability benefits. By having a "my Social Security" online account, these and other questions can be readily answered.

For many retirees and disabled individuals, a common question is whether or not they can claim Social Security and Medicare at the same time. The programs combine to provide a significant amount of the financial support to retired and disabled individuals.

Read more . . .

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Applying for SSI or SSDI

How does one apply for the government benefits of Supplemental Security Income (SSI) or Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI)?

If you are disabled and unable to work you may feel hopeless, but there are a number of government-administered benefits offered to help those in your situation. Two of these, the SSI and SSDI programs, provide cash benefits to those in need. SSI is a program for those who are low income and disabled, while SSDI provides benefits to those who are disabled with a relevant work history. If your situation fits into either of the above categories, you may be entitled to monthly benefits. In this article, we will cover the basics of the Read more . . .

Thursday, March 31, 2016

NYC Mayor De Blasio Signs Bill Expanding Accessibility Laws for Disabled New Yorkers

At Seelig Law Offices, we fight tirelessly to ensure equal access and opportunities for all New Yorkers, regardless of physical limitation. Along the same lines, New York City’s Mayor De Blasio recently enacted several mandates ensuring the same equalities for residents across all five boroughs -- specifically with regard to access to services and events within New York City.

Interestingly, the first set of laws pertains to equal access to websites run by the city and state governments. The directives essentially mimic federal standards, and require municipalities to contract with web development experts to ensure everyone can access the important information found on government web pages. According to the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines followed by the federal government, city and municipal sites must be accessible to those with visual and hearing impairment, as well as those with limited cognitive ability.
Read more . . .

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