When I applied for SSDI/SSI in Dec. 2009, the FO agent mistakenly entered my AOD as Nov. 2009. This date was simply my protective filing date. I submitted an AOD of Sept. 2001 because that was my last day of SGA. On some of my SSDI documents she noted my onset date as Nov. 2009, other documents as Sept. 2001. She even noted my POD and EOD as Sept. 2001. These conflicting dates have never been corrected even after 4 years. The AC remanded my claim twice with instructions to correct my AOD (this never happened). I will soon appear at my 3rd ALJ hearing. They have already deemed me disabled, but as of a much later date because of this ongoing onset date issue. Neither of my representatives (first one withdrew) seem to understand the importance of a proper onset date, so I'm asking here.
I have a progressive disease meeting listing 14.09C1. I have progress notes from 1989 documenting the progression of my spine fusion, etc. I have 2 fully favorable RFC’s from my treating doctors who opined my condition has been disabling since 2001. I have 3 MSS from my Rheumatologist explaining the severe and advanced nature of my disease. I believe my impairment is one of those that no one knows about, so no one is giving me the proper evaluation. Since the FO agent went so far as to “establish” my onset date as Sept. 2001, shouldn’t that trump all the other incorrectly written onset dates? For 4 years my claim has been incorrectly evaluated with an onset date of Nov. 2009. Once an onset date is “established”, how can the ALJ continue to use the other incorrect onset dates to my disadvantage? With a DLI of Dec. 2006, I would think there would be enough red flags to have kept this from happening.
I agree with Attorney Dugan that your focus at this point must be to get the ALJ on remand to apply the correct onset date, or at least an amended onset date within the insured period. Based on the facts you've presented and if my understanding is correct that your DLI ran in 2006 and you applied in 2009, whether your onset date is deemed to be 2001 when you last were at SGA or at any later date prior to your DLI will not materially impact the amount of back benefits at issue so long as you can establish eligibility within the insured period since SSA only allows back benefits up ton12 months prior to the application date. If the AC has remanded your case with specific instructions to amend the onset date to a date within the insured period, then it may be possible to request an on the record decision prior to hearing and without the need for another hearing.
Your fact pattern mentions that your first representative withdrew. While the above answer is provided solely for educational purposes within the guidelines for this forum, it is also provided on the assumption that you are not currently represented. If you are currently represented, however, then it is imperative that you discuss these concerns directly with your representative to assist them in further preparation of your claim, and the only specific advice (beyond the generalized answer to your question above) I can provide is to redirect all further questions to your current representative. If you are not currently represented, then you are encouraged to obtain representation as soon as possible, both to obtain assistance with preparing and submitting an OTR and also to ensure you are represented at your impending hearing.
You've clearly done a great deal of research and are focused on the correct issues. Don't give up. I wish you the absolute best, both with your health and with the ultimate outcome of your claim.
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Social Security Lawyers
What was written when you filed really does not matter now since the case is remanded for a new hearing. What is important is that you establish disability at least the day before your DLI. That should be your focus.
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