Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

Son got approved for his SSI


#1

Finally, after several years, we just received notice that son has been approved for his SSI.

We first applied in December 2011 and were denied. We applied again about a year later in December of 2012 and were again denied.

The third time around in June of 2013, we hired a lawyer. Third time is the charm.

Even though we missed the deadline to appeal after the first denial, our lawyer is able to have retroactive payment date back to 2011. The lawyer will receive 1/4 of the retroactive payment.

The Judge would not allow son to be in charge of this money, so son has agreed to me being the payee. I am thankful for that decision:) We are all relieved, as this will be a huge financial help. The lawyer said the next step will be that we will receive a notice from SSA to meet with them and set up payment details.

Just thought I would share our experience, as I have seen much discussion about this subject on this forum.


#2

Congratulations. Sorry it took so long.


#3

That’s awesome congratulations


#4

Thats Wonderful News @lovemyson - Congrats!


#5

Very happy for both of you!
Why was he being denied?
I know it took 3 months for my son to get SSI/SSDI.


#6

I got a retroactive check for $1600 when I finally got SSI awarded. I had to pay my lawyer half of it. My friend got a retroactive check for $25,000! Really. He bought two cars, many tools, and many radio controlled model airplanes. I seem to remember something about SSI making you “spend down” if you have too much money. The limit you could go up to used to be $2000.


#7

Hi Bridgecomet,

Wow, three months is great!

They reason SSA gave in their write-up is that they felt he could do some type of work. Our lawyer explained to us that the first two denials were made by State employees, and it’s pretty typical to be denied two times. Our third try was finally heard by a Federal Judge. The Judge allowed our lawyer to call me in as a witness. It was a little nerve-wracking but interesting too. Poor son, he was so stressed out, it took him about 5 days to get over it.


#8

Hi Nick,

You must have been awarded pretty quickly too. I think after the lawyer gets his cut, son will end up with about $25,000. He owes his dad and I around $6,000, so after everything he will end up with approximately $19,000.

Does this mean if you’re awarded a large sum, your limit to take out would be around $2,000 per month?


#9

It means your bank account can’t go over $2k.


#10

No, what I meant was that either SSI or SSDI (not sure which one) only allows you to have a certain amount of money at any time. They count cash and money in checking or savings accounts but not assets like houses and cars. So when I got SSI (or SSDI) I had about $2200 in cash and money in the bank and they told me I had to spend $600.00 in two or three weeks (I’m not sure how long they gave me to spend the money) so I would not have more than $1600 in monetary assets left over. I was not allowed to ever have more than $1600 at any time or if I had more than that for an extended period of time they could cut my benefits. You may not even have to worry about this. If it was still true, they probably would have already told you already. If they haven’t told you by now, you may not have to worry about it. I hope I’m not confusing you, but I distinctly remember this.


#11

Yes.please check the limits your son can have on balance. You as his rep payee will need to set up a rep payee account, and the funds can be deposited directly to that account. However, they can check balances at any time, and if he has more than $2000, your son’s benefits can be reduced.

I don’t know if your son is on Medicaid. In my state, the limit on personal savings is even less - $1000!

I don’t know if they give any leeway in your case of the money coming from back pay. From Nick’s experience, it sounds like they don’t.

You can either use it to make significant purchases for him (a car, housing, etc) or possibly move it into an account without his name on it.

My son was involved with a woman who got a $23K back pay check. She went crazy with it, going to spas and buying designer clothes - within a month, she had spent the entire amount.


#12

@77nick77 @astefano @Vallpen

Thanks all for the info. I need to mull all this over and get prepared for our meeting with SSA.

Seems kinda odd though, that SSA will award a large backpay sum, but not allow an amount that is over a lesser amount to be in his account, idk. These are all things I need to check into, but thanks for the heads up.

The lawyer also told us that once the SSI is officially awarded, we will be able to have his student loans written off. Another big relief.


#13

I’m in the process of having my loans discharged. They will be permanently discharged after October 2016! I won’t have to pay back the loans and I can apply for new loans if I wanted to.


#14

That’s awesome!


#15

Don’t get into debt. It is another stressor that you can prevent. Credit companies make their money off individuals luring them in but the interest is terrible. You do not have to learn this the hard way. If you can’t pay for it in cash, walk away. You don’t need it and you will have to pay it back. God bless


#16

I used my son’s award to pay off debt and buy him clothes and cell phone. It was not that much. He cannot have a balance over $2000 in bank. $1600 is a great safety number. If he can live independently, this should help him and you. Good luck


#17

Start a binder of every doctor visit, hospitalization discharge. They look at medicines and history. I didn’t hire a lawyer but went with my son. The first time he told them that he didn’t need disability but needed a loan. The second appointment was at the main office and I believe the supervisor had experience with the illness. I had my binder ready for dates and questions. I applied online and it is hard emotionally but If you keep records filed it helps immensely.