How JustAnswer Works:

  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.

Ask RobertJDFL Your Own Question

RobertJDFL
RobertJDFL, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 10266
Experience:  Experienced in multiple areas of the law.
18284290
Type Your Legal Question Here...
RobertJDFL is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

62 year old cousin with back and other problems hasnt held

Resolved Question:

62 year old cousin with back and other problems hasn't held a job for 15 years. Is he eligible for some sort of disability benefit? Social Security? State of California? Has no income and lives with 96 year old mom who is running out of money
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  RobertJDFL replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your question.

There are no state run programs that he could get that would give him income, though if he hasn't done so, he may want to see if he can qualify for food stamps. With respect to disability, he can file for social security disability, but he should know that most people are initially denied when they filed, and the approval time (if he is approved) can take 18 months to 2+ years between the appeal of the initial denial, waiting for a hearing, waiting for a judge's decision after the hearing, etc.

Also, it sounds like he does have some work history - he may want to inquire about receiving social security now instead of at 65. Doing so typically does reduce the amount he would normally receive by waiting (and social security would be able to tell him in his specific case how much he would receive now versus waiting) but if he needs income now, that may be a good option for him. Additionally, he can collect social security and still file for social security disability - if approved, the amount of his social security check would simply increase.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

I have heard that a note from an MD stating that the person is unable to work may be helpful. Is that true? Does it matter what kind of doctor? Ours is a general practitioner. Is there magic wording for such a note/letter?


Thank you,


--jeff

Expert:  RobertJDFL replied 1 year ago.
I apologize for my tardy reply. In answer to your question - yes, a letter from a treating doctor stating how long they have been treating the person, their impairments, and how it affects them (e.g., this person can only stand for 2 hours in an 8 hour day, sit for 2 hours in an 8 hour day, would be expected to miss work 2 days a month, etc), that can be helpful. Obviously, medical records will be most important in making a determination.

It doesn't matter what type of doctor, though of course it should one your cousin has been treating with.

Also, I would think that if this did end up as a case that went in front of a judge they would be curious to know if your cousin had over the last several years having suffered in pain seen other doctors to help his back -such as an orthopedic surgeon for a consult, or tried physical therapy.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Good background. Is there more specific info on format for a doc letter? Websites with advice in this area?

Expert:  RobertJDFL replied 1 year ago.
No website that I've ever seen, no. I know that if a case is being prepared for a hearing in front of a judge after an initial denial, as well as a denial upon reconsideration, many times firms representing claimants will ask the doctor to fill out what is called a medical source statement. Essentially, these forms ask the doctor to fill out the information that I gave you earlier, things like how long the doctor has been treating the person, what conditions are disabling, and how it impacts them – how far they can walk, how long they can stand, sit, and so forth.

However, there is nothing that says a doctor simply cannot include a letter in the medical records that are submitted that states that in their opinion as the treating physician for X number of years, that the claimant is disabled, unable to do any type of work, and will not be able to do any work in the future.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

what do retired people do when they run out of savings?


what about a 62 year old guy with 80 IQ and bad back?


what social programs are available federally? Any direction for California?

Expert:  RobertJDFL replied 1 year ago.
The reality is there aren't a lot of programs out there for people with low income -federal or state. Many elderly in such a situation get social security early if they can, and/or have small pensions. Some live in Section 8 housing, some live with relatives, and sadly, I've met more than I would have liked handling social security disability claims of seniors who have no income who are homeless.

If he needs housing assistance, he should look into public housing or housing vouchers (Section 8) housing which is low income. If you scroll down that page, there is also a link for people who need assistance with utilities. He should look into getting food stamps as well. And, as you said he had prior work history, he should call social security and see if he can take social security early at 62, versus waiting until he is 65. He would receive less than he would by waiting (they should be able to tell him how much) but since it sounds like this is something badly needed, it's probably worth it.

Also, if he is disabled due to mental and/or physical impairments, then he needs to file for SSDI and SSI. The burden would be on him to demonstrate that these are severe impairments, expected to last at least 12 months or longer, and that they prevent him from doing any work on a full time basis. Around 60% of applicants are initially denied when they apply, however, so it may be that he has to go through the process of seeking reconsideration of the denial, and then if denied again, asking for a hearing. As I mentioned -that can take a year or longer, and there is no guarantee in the end that a judge will approve him. There are social security disability firms that can help him and they do not charge up front fees -rather, if he wins, then they take a portion of the back pay awarded to him.

RobertJDFL, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 10266
Experience: Experienced in multiple areas of the law.
RobertJDFL and 12 other Legal Specialists are ready to help you

JustAnswer in the News:

 
 
 
Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... Justanswer.com.
JustAnswer.com...has seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like justanswer.com/legal
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.
 
 
 

What Customers are Saying:

 
 
 
  • Mr. Kaplun clearly had an exceptional understanding of the issue and was able to explain it concisely. I would recommend JustAnswer to anyone. Great service that lives up to its promises! Gary B. Edmond, OK
< Last | Next >
  • Mr. Kaplun clearly had an exceptional understanding of the issue and was able to explain it concisely. I would recommend JustAnswer to anyone. Great service that lives up to its promises! Gary B. Edmond, OK
  • My Expert was fast and seemed to have the answer to my taser question at the tips of her fingers. Communication was excellent. I left feeling confident in her answer. Eric Redwood City, CA
  • I am very pleased with JustAnswer as a place to go for divorce or criminal law knowledge and insight. Michael Wichita, KS
  • PaulMJD helped me with questions I had regarding an urgent legal matter. His answers were excellent. Three H. Houston, TX
  • Anne was extremely helpful. Her information put me in the right direction for action that kept me legal, possible saving me a ton of money in the future. Thank you again, Anne!! Elaine Atlanta, GA
  • It worked great. I had the facts and I presented them to my ex-landlord and she folded and returned my deposit. The 50 bucks I spent with you solved my problem. Tony Apopka, FL
  • Not only did he answer my Michigan divorce question but was also able to help me out with it, too. I have since won my legal case on this matter and thank you so much for it. Lee Michigan
 
 
 

Meet The Experts:

 
 
 
  • Tina

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    8436
    JD, BBA Over 25 years legal and business experience.
< Last | Next >
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/MU/multistatelaw/2011-11-27_173951_Tinaglamourshotworkglow102011.64x64.jpg Tina's Avatar

    Tina

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    8436
    JD, BBA Over 25 years legal and business experience.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/RA/ratioscripta/2012-6-13_2955_foto3.64x64.jpg Ely's Avatar

    Ely

    Counselor at Law

    Satisfied Customers:

    19941
    Private practice with focus on family, criminal, PI, consumer protection, and business consultation.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/FL/FLAandNYLawyer/2012-1-27_14349_3Fotolia25855429M.64x64.jpg FiveStarLaw's Avatar

    FiveStarLaw

    Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    8189
    25 years of experience helping people like you.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/jespoag/2008-12-17_222355_jessepic.jpg JPEsq's Avatar

    JPEsq

    Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    2132
    Experience as general attorney, in house counsel, SSDI, Family Law attorney, and law professor
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/gsenmartin/2008-04-22_214950_me1.jpg Guillermo J. Senmartin, Esq.'s Avatar

    Guillermo J. Senmartin, Esq.

    Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    110
    7+ years of experience handling various legal matters.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/PA/PaulmoJD/2013-10-10_195858_JAImage.64x64.jpg Law Educator, Esq.'s Avatar

    Law Educator, Esq.

    Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    31621
    JA Mentor -Attorney Labor/employment, corporate, sports law, admiralty/maritime and civil rights law
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/dkaplun/2009-05-17_173121_headshot_1_2.jpg Dimitry K., Esq.'s Avatar

    Dimitry K., Esq.

    Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    15975
    Multiple jurisdictions, specialize in business/contract disputes, estate creation and administration.