Slepian Smith, PLLC

July 2019 Archives

Impact of SSDI and SSI claimants' alcohol and drug use

Social Security laws have changed over the years in how they treat alcoholism and drug addiction when determining whether disability prevents working for purposes of eligibility for Social Security Disability Insurance and Supplemental Security Income, or SSDI and SSI, respectively.

It's worth talking to a lawyer about your SSDI or SSI application

You may think your disability is obvious and there should be no problem getting your Social Security Disability or Supplemental Security Income - usually referred to as SSDI and SSI - approved. After all, your doctor may have ordered that you not work, or you may be unable to take care of your basic daily needs.

Arizona SSDI rejection rate high after doctors' file review

A recent investigative journalism piece revealed that some doctors hired to review applications for Social Security Disability Insurance or Supplemental Security Income may be working too fast to achieve a high degree of accuracy. The Nashville Tennessean said in May that the federal government does not have data readily compiled about doctors in each state who review medical and other records to determine whether claimants are disabled and eligible for SSDI or SSI benefits.

Disability determination should use multiple sources, study says

When deciding if someone can work despite having severe physical or mental medical impairments, ordinarily the decision-maker should consider multiple sources of information, according to a new report from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine. Evidence from vocational testing, medical records and other sources may be necessary to adequately assess a person's ability to sustain productive work activity over time.

SSA may change rule allowing consideration of English proficiency

Since 1978, Social Security Administration regulations have recognized that a Social Security Disability Insurance applicant’s inability to speak English impacts whether there are jobs the person can do. In the SSDI (and Supplemental Security Income, or SSI) application process, English proficiency as part of educational background is weighed along with physical and mental limitations caused by their impairments, age and work experience. The SSA, however, has proposed changing this rule.