How should I apply for long-term disability insurance? And how likely am I to get it? Those are the issues being talked about in the WebMD Rheumatoid Arthritis Community.
Some members of the community are already receiving long-term disability insurance or social security disability insurance (SSDI). Others are just thinking about applying. But almost across the board, community members said they looked at disability as a last resort, when the pain becomes unbearable. A 56-year-old woman said she is in so much pain at her full-time job that she spends her weekends just trying to recover from the rigors of her work week.
A WebMD RA community moderator noted that a similar discussion is going on in another community. She said the consensus there seems to be that when applying for disability insurance, you should:
- Make sure your doctor will back you up.
- Make sure your disease and its impact on your life is well documented.
- Not be surprised if you're turned down the first time.
- Consider getting legal assistance.
A community member who is waiting to hear whether her application has been approved said she was told that getting approved for disability for RA is easier if you are over 55 years old. She also said that, in her case, a disability insurance lawyer was only willing to represent her on appeal if her application is denied.
Another community member said that when her employer told her it was time to leave her job, she was also told she would be eligible for full SSDI and long-term disability insurance payments, and she had counted on that. She was distressed to find out that, instead, the amount of the SSDI payment will be deducted from her long-term disability insurance payment.
A 52-year-old woman who is single said that her SSDI application was denied the first time, but she won her appeal without a lawyer. Unfortunately, she said, she has found that SSDI is not enough to support a single person living modestly, and she has had to take some part-time and temporary positions to keep her head above water. On the positive side, she noted, there was no Internet when she first started wading through the assistance process, so she had no online community to go to for support. At least now, with the support offered by Internet community members, you know you're not alone, she added.