Saturday, August 30, 2014

Back In The Game

I wasn't going to do a blog post today but something happened yesterday that it totally worthy of a post. I got a call yesterday that changed everything having to do with applying for and appealing Thomas's SSI.

My phone rang and I looked on the caller I.D. and saw that it was from his disability advocates, you know, the ones who seem to have abandoned us? I ignored the call and waited for the voicemail to roll in. I was mad just waiting after all, what, really, had they done for us in this whole process?

Well the message was one of hope so I called her back. Here is what she told me:

The girl, Kim, who was handling my case had kept terrible notes so the lady I was now talking to, Jess Anne, said that they were trying to sort through what Kim had been doing with her cases. I told her how someone had told me that they couldn't help me file the appeal and she was so mad at whoever told me that and very apologetic to me. It turns out that they WERE supposed to help me with that but Kim had just written us off. Guess what? Kim had been fired for being a horrible employee, along with her supervisor, and now the new hires were trying to sort out the mess Kim left behind. Jess Anne went on to tell me that not only were they supposed to help me with the appeal but there was a whole laundry list of things they should have been doing for us. Get this, all of these things I needed them for, I didn't know they existed therefore would never have gotten them turned in to Social Security.

So she asked me if after everything if I still wanted them to represent us and I told her if they were going to do their jobs that I would love their help so we discussed what had to be done next.

The first thing, which will happen next Thursday, is having Thomas do an ADL (activities of daily living). This is the first I have heard of this. So, this form, of course, asks about his activities during the day but it goes several steps further and asks things like, "Does he need to be prompted to do chores?" among other little detailed things like that that I didn't know they used to determine if Thomas has a disability. After going through a couple of questions with her I realized just how "disabled" Thomas is. All of the things his dad and I take for granted, that either we have to ask him to do or that we do because he doesn't do them, are things that help determine a disability. Without this call from Jess Anne, I would never have known about it.

The other thing she brought up was an R __ __ form which I can't remember what it was called but it's a form that they send to Thomas's therapist for him to fill out that talks about his limitations at home and at work and asks for his personal, or rather professional, opinion on Thomas's life skills. Again, another form I would never have thought to send. I didn't even know it existed.

Beyond that there are other things they are going to pick up. She did assure me that Thomas would be paid back to 4 months after his disability was determined which would be October of 2012. I had been told by Social Security when we filed the appeal that they were opening the case back to July 7th. I thought the back pay that Thomas would get would only go back to then but that is not the case.

So, all is well now with our advocates. They cleaned house and they are in control again and I am happily handing it all back over to them. I am actually excited again about the disability process which, yes, is easy to do since I now no longer have to do the run-around work that was ahead of me. Luckily Jess Anne called me and to her credit she let me complain a lot about Kim and how their company had abandoned Thomas and I. She was very apologetic and promised better service from this point forward.

We're back on track. Now, Social Security just needs to approve Thomas. Only time will tell.

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