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IBD and Disability

Hi all,

This question may apply only to the Americans on the board, but if I'm wrong(and it seems like I would have to be), please respond.

I tried to go the disability route a couple of years ago. The process took so long that by the time all the appts I had to go to rolled around, I was not flaring. Long story short, even though I have Crohn's and IDA and Bipolar, I was denied.

Trying to put all that work in again is daunting. My sis(this one does NOT have Crohns) was able to get disability for my nephew but ended up with a pretty good gig and the checks stopped coming. She states however, that if she drops below a certain pay grade then the checks start again. She was able to do it all herself, and without a lawyer.

So, has anyone been successful with the disability route, and how many times did you have to go through the bs to get it?
I just got SSD on the first try. I first went on short term, then long term disability from work. While I was on long term, my disability insurance made me file with SSD; they also provided a third party company to help with paperwork. That may have made a difference for SSD. I also have all my issues documented and both my family and GI docs are on board. If you need the name of the third party company send me a private message.
I applied for Social Security 3 times before finally hiring an attorney to help me. Social Security attorneys do not take any up front fees, they get paid when and if you get approved. It took me several years, with the last one I had to wait over 2 years here in MI just for the hearing. I wish you the best, but please keep in mind that normally you would be denied the first and sometimes even a second time, before you finally do get anywhere with the process.
It took me 2 yrs. to get disability. I have Crohn's and had a stroke 6 yrs. ago. I applied a few months after I had my stroke as that was the icing on the cake for me as to deciding whether or not I should apply.

After 1 yr. they told me I was disabled for 6 months and fully recovered. That was total BS as it took me over a year to regain my strength as I couldn't even drive. By then, I had gone to a disability lawyer and he told me to wait for the denial and then he refiled all the paper work for me and fought on my behalf. Then after another year of waiting, I got the letter stating that I had an appt. to see the law judge about my case.

When I got into court, I had to state my name, address, etc. I was prepared to tell the court how I was not able to do stuff at home due to my Crohn's and the fact I was still recovering from my stroke but the judge was ready to rule on the spot instead of having me wait 6-8 weeks. It was in my favor which was really a miracle because my attorney told me beforehand that most cases take several weeks before a decision was made. I truly believe it was all of the prayers my family and friends were saying for me as I was having a very tough time health wise--trying to regain the strength on my entire right side that was paralyzed, a CD flare, I had anxiety once I got the letter stating a date was set for my hearing and I was worried that I'd be denied yet again, and my joints were acting up.

I found out months later via a news report ton tv hat NY state is backlogged over 2 years in hearing disability cases and that they were even bringing in judges from out of state to hear the cases. If you do decide to apply, make sure you have the support of all of your MDs, photocopy EVERYTHING SSD sends you, and have patience.

Oh, they will send you a questionnaire again 9 months or so later on reworded to try and trick you. Just recopy what you wrote from the 1st questionnaire so you are consistent. Focus on what you CAN NOT do. If they get any indication on stuff you can do such as feeding your pet, washing dishes, for example, then they will find any excuse to deny your claim and say you can work which is total BS b/c as we all know, crohnies never know when we have to use the bathroom ASAP or when a blockage will hit.

Good luck to you.
hi.im in the uk and gave up my job as it was physicaly immpossible for me to work due to the ammount of times i was frequenting the loo.i was put on incapacity benefit and then applied for dla(disability living allowance)acording to nacc crohns is a disability which in my veiw it is,as it disables your chance to live a normal life.anyhoo i applied 3 times each time being knocked back and i received an appeal letter and wasnt going to bother but i thought f*** it,ive had enough of these barstewards tacking the piss,my mother in law works with the citizens advice beureua and they took my case on,although they had never won an case,i had to sit on a panel with a doctor lawyer and a member of the social departmentwho pay the money.the doctor tried in vain to make it out i was incontinent and trip me up so they could refuse my case,i fought them all the way and ended up winning,i receive 20pound a week,not a great deal but its a win all the same for the little guy instead of the goverment.one of the reasons i was ko'd was a woman who wrote to me that i was of sound enough mind that if i sh*t myself in public i could deal with it.i was livid that someone could be so calous toward someone and would love to meet this woman one day and explain that she wouldnt know what hit her if she ever had the missfortune to suffer such a disabilatating disease,hope you get the deal you deserve and stick it right up them!!!!
I applied for disability about 3 years ago, let my appeal time lapse then reapplied 2 years ago. This time I appealed every decision and made it to Administative Law Judge level. He gave me a choice of getting a lawyer, which I accepted. I had another hearing date scheduled and was in the process of finding a lawyer to help me when I got a call a week after my initial hearing stating the judge had given me a fully favorable result.
They had acknowledged all along that with my currant symptoms I could not work a traditional job or any kind of past work I had done, but they felt I could work a less demanding job.
The law judge acknowledged that my medical findings (2 resections in less than a year, malaborbtion, mulitple abcesses that did not heal correctly, and adhesive disease) could be expected to cause my currant claims of symptoms and that having to "leave the worksite" more than 15 times a day (I have D sometimes 30 times a day at this point) constituted a disability as there were currantly little or no jobs to accomadate my symptoms.
I have to have a re-evalutation in 2 years. "As improvement can be reasonably expected with proper medical treatment". Even though I have been getting "proper medical treatment" this entire time with no improvement.
The fact is, in the US.. unless you have severe Crohn's symptoms that do not respond to a wide variety of treatments and last for at least a year consistantly, they will probably deny you again and again.
Also, reapplying is not the same as appealing. If you want a fighting chance, you have to appeal your decisions and keep your currant claim going.