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Dying to get Social Security Disability Insurance

Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) is available for eligible individuals who suffer from a condition that has left them unable to work for a year or more or is terminal. As many who have applied for its benefits in Ohio know, it is not always easy to obtain.

Unfortunately, sometimes it is much more difficult than it should be. A story out of Florida illustrates the point too well. A boy named Harley Andrews had first developed headaches when he was 18. He would need to go to a dark, quiet room, but after the headache passed, he would assure his mother that he was fine.

He was not fine. An eventual episode of vomiting, followed by a visit to the emergency room, announced the culprit. He had a glioblastoma multiforme brain tumor.

And then began another struggle. One to obtain SSDI benefits. According to a story in the Orlando Sentinel, he would receive benefits, then they would be denied, then they would be reinstated.

The experience was of the worst bureaucratic type one can imagine with an agency that has to make over two million application decisions every year and that is processing approximately 1.8 million applications at any one time.

The cruelest aspect of the story occurred on September 2, 2012. His mother received a letter from the Social Security Administration (SSA), written in the positive corporate tone employed by all large bureaucracies.

SSA was happy to announce that they had determined that his condition had improved and he was able to return to work. They had missed one important element of his condition: He had died twelve days earlier at age 23.

SSDI applications are never easy, so if you are having problems, a SSDI attorney can help deal with some of the bureaucratic complexity that inevitably results.

Source: Orlando Sentinel, "Social Security should change how it deals with brain-tumor patients," Lauren Ritchie, October 24, 2012

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Philip J. Fulton Law OfficeRepresenting Victims Of Workplace Injuries And Disability

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Columbus, OH 43215

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