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Dying SSD recipient accused of making too much money stripped of benefits

Millions of Americans rely upon federal Social Security disability benefits to afford necessities like housing and food. An individual may qualify to receive SSD benefits if he or she was born with or developed a physical or mental disability later in life. Additionally, individuals who suffer from serious illnesses that adversely affect their overall health and ability to work may also qualify to receive SSD benefits.

Such was the case for one 45-year-old woman who has suffered a series of health problems since 2000, the accumulation and complications of which have led doctors to predict she has mere months to live. While the woman has been receiving SSD benefits since July 2012, she was later informed she was no longer eligible and her disability benefits were stopped.

A committed court-appointed advocate for disabled children and individuals with mental disabilities, the woman was told by a Social Security Administration employee she could work and maintain her SSD eligibility provided her monthly income did not exceed $1,019.

However, in Feb. 2013, she was informed by SSA officials that she made too much money to qualify for SSD benefits. In response, the woman asked SSA officials to review her case. To date, however, she has not been provided an update about whether her SSD eligibility will be reinstated.

Today, with only a predicted six months to live, the woman has run out of money and options. The piles of unpaid bills keep growing and the woman has turned to her church to help pay her mortgage. In a last ditch attempt to be afforded the ability to live out her last days in peace and not worrying she'll loose her home, the woman wrote to a newspaper and told her story and struggles with the SSA.

The response to the woman's story brought the kind words and encouragement of many as well as checks intended to go towards helping the woman pay her mortgage. Her story also drew the attention of a state senator as well as an SSA official who promised that her case was his top priority.

This woman's story is similar to those of many disabled and dying Americans who are not able to work and yet have difficulty either qualifying for or maintaining their SSD eligibility. For individuals dealing with SSD problems, an attorney who handles SSD-related matters can provide advice and assistance.

Source: The Des Moines Register, "Woman's loss of disability payments gets quick response," Lee Rood, April 14, 2014The Des Moines Register, "Reader's Watchdog: Dying advocate needs some help," Lee Rood, April 5, 2014

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