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Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Attorney
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Experience:  JA Mentor -Attorney Labor/employment, corporate, sports law, admiralty/maritime and civil rights law
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Disability summarizes. Surgeries dates Left eye.- Jan 24th

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Disability summarizes.

Surgeries dates
Left eye.- Jan 24th 2011 Retina detachment. Was installed bubble gas.That surgery damaged the macula, created vision distortion and incomplete shapes until today.
Left eye.- Apr 4th 2011 Cataract
Right eye.- May 2011 Several laser treatment to retina
Right eye.- Set 2011 Cataract
Right eye,-Dec 2012 removed floater and secured retina. Was installed bubble gas.
Couldn't have until now glasses prescription in both eyes. I base my vision in the right eye only until today.


Disability dates
Short term.- Apr 18th. Was paid full salary by my employer Equity Residential
Long term.- From Oct 1st 2011 to Nov 15ht 2012 Was paid by insurance Lincoln Financial Group. $1,458 monthly, about 50% of my regular salary.
Applied to SSA.- May 18th 2011. They denied the application, but after a appeal by Advocator group, they finally set hearing date for the next April 15th 2013 at 11AM at Fort Lauderdale court.

I couldn’t stand any more with my financial struggles and On Set 10th 2012, with
this eye conditions, I re-start working until now.

According with Advocator Group, the application for disability was dismissed because I worked more than 90 day but I should go to the audience next April 15th because the Judge could order the SSA to pay the 13 months that I was without working, BUT, this money really will go to pay the lawyers and all the balance will be for the Lincoln Financial Group.

Questions
Advocator Group is taking care of Lincoln Financial Group interests only, Can I go to the court without lawyer or with another lawyer?

Lincoln Financial Group said, I must go to the hearing any way even tough I am not going to receive any money, otherwise, they will send a bill for 1,458 X 13 months. Is that possible? I have to go?

I can re-apply to SSA my case if my vision gets worst in the future?
Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking.

I am afraid that as they have taken up the appeal on your behalf, even though they feel that you may lose (and they are preparing you for that possibility) there is still a potential that you may win benefits upon the judge seeing you and your disability first hand. Since they agreed to represent you, I am afraid that your duty to them now is to follow through with your claim and that means showing up at the hearing, since if you fail to show up at the hearing there is not even a possibility you will win benefits.

You have to go to the benefit hearing and let them complete making your case for you and hope for a positive decision.

If your vision gets worse in the future you can always reapply for SSDI at a later date, even if this case denies your benefits.



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Customer: replied 3 years ago.

I will repeat what I said in one of my questions.


"Lincoln Financial Group said, I must go to the hearing any way even tough I am not going to receive any money, otherwise, they will send me a bill for 1,458 X 13 months. Is that possible? I have to go?"


 


What I mean is. if I go to the hearing, any way I am not going to receive any benefits in case the judge order the SSA to pay me for the 13 months I didn't work, because that money will be taken by the lawyers first and the balance HAVE to go to the finacial group. That's what they say. This finacial group is expecting a positive veredict and take the money. If I don't go to the hearing they will take zero money that is why they are threatening me in an email in this way:


Please be advised that if you do not attend, we will assume you have been awarded Social Security Disability benefits and an overpayment will be calculated based on the estimated award amount of $1,458.00 for the period of 10/01/2011 to 11/15/2012.


 


Really can they do that if I don't go? send me a huge bill? is that legal?


 

Thank you for your reply. I did understand what you said the first time and yes, they can make you show up at the hearing even though there is a potential you will not receive the benefits. This is part of your agreement with them and they could indeed come after you for the money AND THEN you would have to spend more money and time to go to court against them to prove you received nothing. Thus, it is cheaper and more economical for you to show up at the hearing even if you might not get the benefits awarded. As long as you complete your obligation and if you do not get awarded benefits they will not collect from you.

They are telling you that if you try to avoid your obligation to them and do not attend the hearing, that they are going to hold that against you as they are trying to protect their legal interest in your matter. This is why going to the hearing is in your best interest.
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