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Can a person be classified "disabled" without recieving social security disability payments?

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DollyM Donating Member (837 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-15-10 09:05 PM
Original message
Can a person be classified "disabled" without recieving social security disability payments?
My husband is diabetic and was recently hosptialized and lost another chunk of his foot. I think it is time we recognize that he probably is not going to be able to keep working. Unfortunetly, he does not qualify for social security disability because he is not an American citizen. He has been here since he was four, worked and paid into the system for 25 plus years, served in the American military, etc. but because he worked for a state college that paid into a teachers pension fund rather than social security, it was as if he didn't work for the past seven years. For some reason, if you don't pay into social security for seven years and you are not an AMerican citizen,you lose the right to apply for disability. So we went back to the teachers fund and it had a disability clause but he would have had to applied for it within a year after leaving his job. (He didn't leave willingly, he was on a grant and the college lost the grant and all the employees in the program lost their jobs. He is 56 years old and a diabetic so has had a great deal of trouble finding an appropriate job.
But my first concern is, he needs to be able to get a medical card, medicaid, but I don't know if he has to be on social security disability to be able to get one. We have very little income (my part time job and a few bucks from our small business) so we should qualify financially. I have seen several programs tied to this qualification such as the heating assistance program. You have to be on social security disabilty to show that you are disabled. He has a state handicap placard which meant a letter from the doctor was sent to the state showing that he had a permanent disability, but that hasn't been good enough for anything we have applied for that wants proof of disability. So how does one prove they are disabled? Does that have to come from the social security administration to state that a person is disabled? I don't know who to turn to for answers.
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Justitia Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-15-10 09:11 PM
Response to Original message
1. You apply for Medicaid separately, through your state.
It is a totally separate program from Soc Sec, with different eligibility requirements for each state.

Here is a link to the Medicaid website, with an overview of eligibility: http://www.cms.hhs.gov/MedicaidEligibility /

Best of luck to you & your husband.
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DollyM Donating Member (837 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-16-10 07:25 PM
Response to Reply #1
10. I checked on that today when I went to apply for food stamp . . .
The worker said that he was not eligible for Medicaid unless he was on social security disability. Here we go again in the same circle. Basically, we are screwed.
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Justitia Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-16-10 08:34 PM
Response to Reply #10
11. What state are you in?
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DollyM Donating Member (837 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-16-10 10:20 PM
Response to Reply #11
12. Illinois
eom
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Justitia Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-16-10 10:36 PM
Response to Reply #12
13. Here is a state specific link for you...
http://www.hfs.illinois.gov/programs /

It talks about various programs you may be eligible for, basically it says to give them a call and let them point you in the right direction.

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Justitia Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-16-10 10:42 PM
Response to Reply #12
14. Forgot to mention....please check w/the hospital social worker.
You mention that your husband was recently hospitalized. Call the hospital business office and ask to speak with the hospital social worker.
The hospital social worker should be able to give you information that you might specifically be eligible for.
Your hospital district (that you pay for w/property taxes) may also have it's own "medically needy" plan, mine does.
It's not easy, but this is what you pay taxes for.

Also, ask about disease-specific advocacy organizations, i.e., programs to help diabetics. My son receives great help from the TX Kidney Fund for his kidney meds.

Don't get discouraged or give up.

Best wishes to you & keep us posted.
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Justitia Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-16-10 10:47 PM
Response to Reply #12
15. Call Illinois Disease Management also....
http://www.hfs.illinois.gov/dm /

This dept is set up specifically to help citizens of Illinois in coping w/chronic illness, like your husband's diabetes.
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MiniMe Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-15-10 09:19 PM
Response to Original message
2. The college may provide disability insurance
It is a place to check anyway.
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DollyM Donating Member (837 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-16-10 12:45 PM
Response to Reply #2
9. already tried that . . .
The college HR office said he would have had to applied for disability through them within one year after leaving there.
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Traveling_Home Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-15-10 09:20 PM
Response to Original message
3. SSDI seems like a lost clause but I would start here ......

"So we went back to the teachers fund and it had a disability clause but he would have had to applied for it within a year after leaving his job"

I'd get a lawyer and talk to them about his.

There is disability forum here on DU. XPost there too.

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Another Bill C. Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-15-10 09:23 PM
Response to Original message
4. There's a program
called Streamlined Citizenship for Service Members and Veterans. It might be worth looking into in order for your husband to obtain more benefits.

http://www.military.com/benefits/legal-matters/streamli...
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DollyM Donating Member (837 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-16-10 12:41 PM
Response to Reply #4
8. thanks for that information . . .
However, according to that site, he would have had to applied for citizenship within 6 months after leaving service. He left service in 1975.
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happyslug Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-15-10 09:53 PM
Response to Original message
5. Different Programs have different definition of "Disability".
First, being a Non-American citizen does NOT cut you out from getting Social Security. His problem is that since he has NOT paid into Social Security, for he was working for a state, for Four year before he became disabled, he is NOT eligible for Social Security Disability. This is true even if he was a US Citizen. It is one of the nasty rules of Social Security. Please note if he can show he was disabled within the four year period, he is eligible today. He can not get money for any period more then a year before he applied for Social Security, but if he can show he was disabled do to his disability or other problem within four years of the last time he paid into Social Security, he can get Social Security. Please note if he has been denied but NOT gone in front of an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) have him appeal and try to get whatever evidence you can find that show he was disabled even seven years ago (Through the fact he was working is strong evidence he was NOT disabled, for the test for Disability is the inability to do any job).

While he is NOT eligible for Social Security for his State did NOT pay into Social Security does not mean he is NOT disabled for other benefits. For example the related Social Security Program known as Supplemental Security Income (SSI), while using the same definition of Disability as Social Security, is NOT dependent on his payments into Social Security. Now SSI is different from Social Security disability it that it is reduced by any other income he receives (And is reduced by his spouses income). SSI is capped at $674 per year (plus whatever your state Supplements it by, most State's supplement is much like my Home State's Supplement which is only $27.40 per month).

Now the Federal Government also have other programs to help people who are disabled. One of them is the Office of Vocational Rehabilitation (OVR). OVR's definition of disability is can you be re-trained to do a job? (Social Security Definition of Disability is can you do jobs that exist in the substantial numbers in the National Economy of a full time nature). SSI uses the same definition as Social Security Disability but OVR definition is substantially different (As I point out, can he be retrained to do ANY job in the National Economy, full time employment is NOT a limitation).

Welfare also have different definitions and these vary state by state. In the South forget it. In my home state of Pennsylvania, all you need to get Welfare Benefits is a statement from your doctor that you are disabled and make an application for Social Security (Benefits continue as long as you keep on appealing, even beyond the ALJ Level, but I always advise clients if you lost at the ALJ Level make a new application for SSI, and that is good enough to continue getting Welfare benefits). Please note this is General Assistance and thus 100% state paid for. Transitional Aide for Needy Families (TANF, what was known a AFDC before the mid-1990s) is a different program.
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charlyvi Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-15-10 09:59 PM
Response to Original message
6. You don't have to be an American citizen to get Social Security disability.
Edited on Mon Feb-15-10 10:01 PM by charlyvi
You do, however, have to have worked for five out of the last ten years leading up to the point of disability onset under a job which paid into Social Security. If your husband paid into a teacher's retirement fund rather than Social Security, that is why he does not qualify. It has nothing to do with his citizenship. It matters for SSI, but not Social Security disability.
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ChicagoSuz219 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-15-10 10:24 PM
Response to Original message
7. Go to www.socialsecurity.gov...
...look for their 800 #. Call them. They're very nice & will give you the right information &/or direct you to the proper agencies that can help you.

In the meantime, apply for food stamps, Medicaid & welfare. Even if you're not eligible for all of it, you may be entitled to something.

Good luck!
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Odin2005 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Feb-18-10 06:49 PM
Response to Original message
16. I get SSI instead of SSDI because I CAN work.
I just can't work full time at a McJob.
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