Ann Carrellas, LMSW Vice President/Director of Family Resource Center Washtenaw Association for Community Advocacy 1100 N. Main Street, Suite 205 Ann Arbor MI 48104 734-662-1256. Benefits and Community Supports for Persons with Developmental Disabilities and Mental Illnesses September 9, 2009.
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Ann Carrellas, LMSWVice President/Director of Family Resource CenterWashtenaw Association for Community Advocacy1100 N. Main Street, Suite 205 Ann Arbor MI 48104734-662-1256
Benefits and Community Supports for Persons with Developmental Disabilities and Mental Illnesses
September 9, 2009
Applying for Social Security Disability benefits
Other financial programs
How to effectively advocate for appropriate mental health services
Please take a moment and think about one or two things you hope to understand about Social Security Disability programs and other supports.
If I don’t answer your questions during the presentation, please ask.
Save everything you receive from any state or federal agency.
Copy everything you give to them.
Don’t look for logic.
Based on need (income and resource limits).
Check arrives on the 1st of the month.
Benefit amount varies with living arrangement.
Medicaid included in Michigan.
Asset and resource limitations are:
$2,000 for individual, $3,000 for a couple
Payment rate is about 75% of poverty. For 2009, $674/month for an individual($1,011 for couple) for independent rate.
No resource limits, no limit on unearned income.
Check arrives on 3rd or another assigned day.
Benefit amount depends on work record, age when benefits begin, # of people receiving.
Medicare after 24 months of eligibility.
Substantial Gainful Activity applies
Receives both SSI and SSDI in two checks.
Total of benefits is $20 more than SSI alone.
The Social Security Act and current amendments (applies at Administrative Law Judge level)
Code of Federal Regulations--CFR 20, parts 400-499 applies at Administrative Law Judge level)
Program Operations Manual (POMS)-day to day policy used by SSA District office staff.
All the above are on line at www.ssa.gov, search program rules.
The 14 Adult Listings Disability (SSDI, Title II)
Special Senses and Speech
Impairments that Affect Mulitple Body Systems
Malignant Neoplastic Disorders
Immune System Disorders
Do not have a medically determinable impairment.
Have an impairment that does not significantly limit the physical or mental ability to do “basic work activities”.
Fail to meet the duration requirement.
Be capable of past relevant work.
Be capable of other work.
Think about some of the problems a person with a developmental disability or mental illness might have in terms of basic mental and social abilities needed to work as we go through the next few slides.
Remember work like procedures.
Understand, remember and carry out very short and simple instructions.
Maintain attention for two hour segments.
Maintain regular attendance and be punctual within the customary, usually strict tolerances.
Sustain and ordinary routine without special supervision.
Work in coordination with or proximity to others without being unduly distracted.
Make simple work related decisions.
Complete a normal work day and work week without interruptions form psychologically based symptoms.
Perform at a consistent pace without an unreasonable number and length of rest periods.
Ask simple questions and request assistance
Accept instructions and respond appropriately to criticism form supervisors.
Call your local SSA office, or 1-800-772-1213 to request an application
Apply on line at www.ssa.gov
This activity assures your “protected filing date (the date benefits will go back to when you are approved).
The claimant is responsible for making sure that their medical evidence reaches SSA and therefore, DDS.
DDS and SSA make a minimal effort (that is why we sign all those releases) but you are the person with the most at stake - take an active role!
Your active participation in this, will make a HUGE difference in whether or not you are awarded benefits on first application.
Fill out all the paperwork in detail. Write as if you are drawing a picture of yourself and your disability for the examiner (who will never meet you).
The forms can be intimidating - take a break, ask for help.
Call the DDS examiner every 10 days to check on your case. Find out what they have for medical evidence.
If there are medical reports that will help the examiner make a decision and recognize your disability, get copies of them to DDS.
Have your treating MD’s fill out supporting medical evidence paperwork.
Go to consultative examinations. If you do not have or have not had health insurance, make sure you let people know this at SSA in your forms and at your appointments.
If approved, you will get a letter stating this. You will need to go to SSA to begin receiving benefits.
If denied, you need to decide within 60 days whether or not you want to appeal.
If you decide to appeal, go to SSA and file the appeal forms. (Appeals take 18-24 months from the date you file).
Do I need a lawyer to appeal?
No, you can do it yourself or get a non-attorney representative.
I heard everyone is denied the first time they apply, Why is that?
Actually a significant number of people are approved. Generally, it seems that the main reason people are denied is because there is not enough medical evidence.
Apply for these programs through your local Dept. of Human Services
State Disability Assistance ($264 a month)
Food Assistance (food stamps)
State Emergency Assistance
Financial assistance to families with dependent children
Other Financial Resource or her do so - their opinion means a lot.
Accessing Community Mental Health Services or her do so - their opinion means a lot.
Developmental Disabilities or her do so - their opinion means a lot.
Developmental Disabilities (cont.) or her do so - their opinion means a lot.
(B) Receptive and expressive language.
(F) Capacity for independent living.
(G) Economic self-sufficiency.
(v) Reflects the individual's need for a combination and sequence of special, interdisciplinary, or generic care, treatment, or other services that are of lifelong or extended duration and are individually planned and coordinated.
Michigan Mental Health Code
Mental illness eligibility or her do so - their opinion means a lot.
Non-qualifying diagnosis and all the above
Unqualifying Diagnoses or her do so - their opinion means a lot.
Functional Degree of Disability or her do so - their opinion means a lot.
How can I effectively advocate for someone to receive appropriate mental health services?
Effective Advocacy appropriate mental health services?
Questions? appropriate mental health services?
Thank you for your time.