The Social Security Disability system in the United States is very complicated. Whether you are a recently disabled father trying to provide for your family, a single mother who can no longer work because of an illness, or the parent of a child who needs extra help because of a challenging condition, obtaining benefits is not easy. The “system” involves a complex set of rules and requirements that make it very hard for the average person to successfully receive payments.

There is hope, however, and we appreciate you looking for help here. Our law firm provides unique benefits to clients just like you, which include:

  • A singular focus on representing the injured and disabled.
  • Having all important work performed by an experienced disability attorney.
  • A guarantee that you pay no fees unless you obtain social security disability benefits.
  • A proven track record of success in both routine and difficult cases.

Regardless of whether you are considering filing for benefits for the first time, or have been denied numerous times in the past, please call our office at (404) 255-9838. We will discuss your options free of charge, and help you make an informed decision about what to do next. We look forward to talking with you.

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A popular misconception is that type 2 diabetes is a disease that affects only older persons. This is increasingly being proven false by strong evidence. Data indicates that the number of teens and young adults diagnosed with type 2 diabetes is increasing.

As many as 1 in 8 new diagnoses of type 2 diabetes now involve persons between the age of 18 and 40, compared to a rate of 1 in 10 less than two decades ago. Besides, younger females between the age of 18 and 40 now seem to have a higher incidence of diabetes compared to women above the age of 40. Another study also found that teens who were diagnosed with type 2 diabetes were at a high risk of diabetes-related complications in their twenties.

If you are a diabetes patient, you likely have concerns about the way your health will impact your ability to work and earn an income. Persons with type 2 diabetes are at a higher risk of several complications. These include

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Today, October 6, is World Cerebral Palsy Day, reminding us of the challenges facing over 17 million people impacted by this disorder. Most individuals with cerebral palsy are diagnosed at birth, although some infants are diagnosed a few months after birth. There is no cure for cerebral palsy, and it is a lifelong disability. Some individuals with cerebral palsy can qualify for Social Security disability benefits. To be approved for benefits as an adult, you must have medical evidence showing one of the following:

  • An IQ of 70 or less
  • Abnormal behavior patterns
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The Social Security Administration (SSA) recently announced the addition of several conditions to its Compassionate Allowances programs. This program allows persons with certain medical conditions that are deemed to be very severe attention to have their claims processed faster. The processing time for a claim is typically reduced by several months. Claims that fall under Compassionate Allowances have access to the agency’s special technology that allows it to identify these medically disabling conditions and expedite processing of these claims.

The recently added conditions include:

CDKL5 Deficiency Disorder

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The Social Security Administration recently issued a ruling that clarifies the evaluation criteria for primary headache disorders. SSR 19-4 p explains the meaning of primary headache disorders, a broad category of disorders that includes migraines. It also clarifies the typical diagnostic procedures that are used to determine the existence of these conditions. The ruling also outlines the criteria that the agency will use to determine a person’s eligibility for Social Society disability benefits.

The ruling clarifies that the primary headache disorders are migraines, tension headaches, and trigeminal autonomic cephalalgias. Doctors generally treat these disorders on an “exclusion” basis, meaning that they first determine that there are no other medical or psychiatric sources of these headache symptoms.

It also mentions keeping a journal of the headaches. If you suffer from migraines or frequent chronic headaches, then you must maintain a documented journal. Record the frequency and severity of your symptoms, the times of the days when these are most likely to occur, and the other symptoms that also accompany your headaches. Not only will this help your physician come to the right diagnostic conclusions, but the journal can also help you file a strong claim for disability benefits.

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The process of applying for Social Security disability benefits is long and tedious, and it can be months before your claim is processed. There are always thousands of Social Security disability cases pending hearing before administrative law judges. Social Security disability claimants in the metro Atlanta area can visit either the Downtown Atlanta office or the North Atlanta office. As of June 2019, according to data reported by the National Organization of Social Security Claimants’ Representatives, 7539 cases were pending in the Downtown area and 4564 cases pending in the North area.

The average processing time per claim in the Downtown office was 579 days with an average of 1.89 dispositions. The total number of hearings as of June this year was 4077. A Social Security disability hearing allows claimants to present more documentation and solid evidence to increase their chances of recovering disability benefits. While there are options of online hearings, most hearings are held in person. The in-person hearing rate percentage at the Atlanta Downtown office was 93.5. The Downtown office has one of the highest rates of in-person hearings in the country.

At the Atlanta North office, the processing time was 463 days with 1.96 administrative law judge hearings taking place per judge. There were a total of 2606 hearings conducted, and the percentage of in-person hearings was 76.6.

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Colostomies are performed in some cases of colon cancer, or severe cases of gastrointestinal illness or Irritable Bowel Syndrome. After a colostomy, stools are no longer emptied through the rectum and the anus. Instead, they are passed into the colostomy bag or pouch which must be replaced 2 to 3 times a day.

A colostomy can be the very last resort for persons who suffer from severe gastrointestinal illnesses. It is often the only choice for persons who suffer from colon cancer, requiring removal of parts of their large intestine or colon as part of treatment.

There are several complications associated with the use of a colostomy bag after a colostomy. There may be a stoma blockage when stools do not get emptied in time. This can cause cramps, pain, swelling in the stoma, nausea, and diarrhea. A warm bath and intake of fluids can help ease the blockage. If this does not help, however, get in touch with your doctor immediately. Other complications include a stoma prolapse in which the stoma extends far beyond the surface of the skin. In this case, internal leakage may necessitate additional surgeries.

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A bill that has recently been introduced in Congress aims to do away with the 5-month waiting period that mandatorily applies to Social Security disability claimants whose claims have been approved. Even after a Social Security disability applicant’s claim is approved, he must wait 5 months before he starts receiving his benefits. If the person also qualifies for Medicare befits, then those privileges have an even longer wait time attached to them. Social Security disability claimants who have begun receiving their benefits must wait a further 24 months before their Medicare benefits start kicking in.

Some exceptions have been made to the 24-month Medicare waiting rule. For example, individuals who are suffering from terminal kidney failure or advanced stages of ALS may have their wait period eliminated. The wait times are extremely distressing for Social Security disability beneficiaries who cannot afford to wait for important medical care as well as money to meet their daily expenses. The bill spearheaded by Representative Steve Israel (D) New York, aims to eliminate both the 5-month waiting period and the 24-month waiting period for commencement of Medicare benefits.

As a Social Security disability lawyer who sees firsthand how stressful those wait times are for claimants, I strongly support this bill. I also support the waiver of the 5-month waiting period as well as the 2-year waiting period for Medicare benefits for all claimants. Many disabilities make it virtually impossible for a person to earn enough to support himself and his family. Making him wait arbitrary lengths of time to begin receiving benefits only increases the stress on the disability applicant and their loved ones.

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For individuals with disabilities able to work, there are often many obstacles to being employed. With an unemployment rate of 3.7% for the general population, the rate for those with disabilities is 6.3%. However, some companies are working hard to reverse this troubling statistic, including Microsoft, Walgreens, and Voya. These companies are reviewing their hiring procedures to incorporate best practices in supporting employees with physical, emotional, and neurological disabilities.

It is not only the right thing for these companies to do, but it also is beneficial for the economy. A study released in October 2018 showed that America’s GDP could increase by up to $25 billion if the number of employed Americans with disabilities increased by 1%. Laurie Henneborn, research managing director for Accenture, said “[t]he conversation is absolutely evolving from philanthropic and charitable to one that is foundational to the business.” In 2017, 4.5% of Accenture’s employees reported having a disability.

It is not only important that individuals able to work are hired, but that they can maintain their health at the same time. Amongst the 61 million U.S. adults with a disability, 62% report their disability as “invisible,” meaning that colleagues don’t recognize their disability until told. Those with disabilities must be able to take time off to see doctors or for health-related reasons, making paid sick leave critical.

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Vaccinations are critical to maintaining a healthy population and have saved millions of lives. Their immediate benefits include providing long-term protection against some infectious diseases. They train the body how to identify pathogens they may come in contact with and fight against them by creating antibodies. Vaccinations directly protect against diseases that were once deadly, including polio, measles, tetanus, and whooping cough. For individuals who do not get vaccinated, they put themselves or their children at risk of developing a severe illness. Every year, thousands of individuals in the US are hospitalized due to severe illnesses that vaccinations can help prevent. By vaccinating yourself and your children, you minimize the risk of unnecessary suffering. For a list of the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s recommended vaccinations by age, click here.

Vaccinations also protect individuals from diseases they may be exposed to in areas they travel to in other regions. For example, the yellow fever vaccine is required for travelers to certain areas of South America and Africa, due to the risk of contracting the illness while traveling to these destinations.

Vaccinations are not only critical for the individual receiving the shots but society at large. When a very high percentage of a population is vaccinated, herd immunity makes it more difficult for germs to spread from person to person. This, in turn, makes the entire community less likely to contract the disease. This is especially important for individuals unable to vaccinate, including those with cancer, HIV, type I diabetes, or other health conditions that weaken one’s immune system.

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Since the symptoms of myasthenia gravis so closely mirror chronic fatigue syndrome and several other fatigue-causing conditions, a complete diagnosis of the condition is important to help you recover Social Security disability benefits for your condition. The results of diagnostic tests performed by your doctor, that too at times when your muscles are at their most fatigued will help. Since myasthenia gravis can be episodic, there may be periods of severe symptoms followed by periods of remission.  Your medical records will prove vital.

Another possible route to recovery of the Social Security disability benefits that you qualify for is the medical-vocational allowance path which will focus on the types of work that you are unable to do as a result of your condition. For example, if the condition has resulted in extreme weakness in your arms or hands, you may not be able to lift things which makes manual work very difficult or impossible to do.

If you suffer from myasthenia gravis, discuss your eligibility for benefits with this law firm by calling (404) 255- 9838.