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Unemployment vs SSDI

jasrojjasro Posts: 224
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:45 AM in Health Insurance Issues
Good morning...

It's my understanding that in order to be on unemployment compensation, one has to sign a weekly statement that they are "able, willing and capable" of working.

When completing the SSDI forms, one has to state that they aren't capable of working - which is direct conflict with the statements required for unemployment comp.!

Has anyone run into issues doing this? Is it necessary to give up worker's comp. in order to apply for disability?

Does it make a difference that one is Federal and the other State???

Any experience shared would be greatly appreciated. My son's in this pickle right now. We honestly don't know how to proceed.



  • Didn't mean to write "workers comp"...I meant Unemployment. Sorry.

  • Yes you are correct on that SSDI, states you agree you can't work and won't be able to work for a year. Also with unemployment you are agreeing you are capable of working. In out state anyone receiving unemployment has to check in once a month at the office. If your son is truly disabled he needs to speak with a attorney about what to do. One is state and one is federal but unemployment is reportable income, so it will be reported. SSDI looks at all forms of income, over the previous 10 years.
  • Yes it is one or the other. If you can work you get unemployment. If you can't work long term you can file for SSDI.

    There is another option which is state disability which is short term. Usually 26 weeks. Has he filed for this?
  • SpineAZSpineAZ WiscPosts: 1,084
    Only the following states offer State Disability:

    New York
    New Jersey
    Rhode Island
    Puerto Rico
    Rhode Island

    There is no other state provided STD in other states.

    In order to be eligible for SSDI the person must be disabled for five full calendar months. If someone is declaring, in order to receive unemployment, that they are able to work, then that likely would not be a period in which the person can be considered disabled.

    Make sure he uses an attorney who SOLELY deals in disability law. He may need to be unemployment free for at least 5 months. But, the harder part it is can take quite a while for for anyone to be awarded SSDI.

    I'm very lucky that I had STD and LTD through my employer. I have been in the industry so I never took a job without it. If he gets another job at any time make sure he takes advantage of all of these type of benefits in terms of enrolling upon beginning employment should the time come that he ever needs it again.
    2 ACDFs, 2 PCDF, 3 LIFs; Rt TKR; Rt thumb fusion ; Lt thumb arthroplasty; Ehlers Danlos 
  • That's what I thought. Life..is such a survival game. Not a game, really. That's the scary part.

    Thank you all so very much. I just needed to be sure that his circumstance IS how I'm seeing it.

    Regards - and thanks again.
  • I never knew that about disability. I guess there are some benefits to living in NY. Today the grass is greener on my side of the fence!
  • SpineAZSpineAZ WiscPosts: 1,084
    CA has the most liberal STD. 52 weeks and the weekly benefit amount is higher than most of the other states. Even in the states that have state STD you can get more STD if you have an employer that offers weekly STD beyond the state benefit.
    2 ACDFs, 2 PCDF, 3 LIFs; Rt TKR; Rt thumb fusion ; Lt thumb arthroplasty; Ehlers Danlos 
  • "IF" my son is "TRULY" disabled, huh?

    I wouldn't be asking the question if he weren't.

  • I think what she meant is that if he will be disabled for a year or more since SSDI is a long term more permanent disability. As opposed to not being able to work for a few months because of surgery.
  • SpineAZSpineAZ WiscPosts: 1,084
    The big "IF" is "if SSDI will see him as disabled". The denial rate for initial SSDI application is quite high and their definition of disability is more stringent than other coverage like STD, LTD, WC, state disability, etc. SS will approved only if the person is deemed unable to do any job. That's the toughest part as SS often brings a vocational expert to any appeal to find jobs the person can do. The job of the SS attorney is then to fight those findings which I've seen success with when the knowledgeable attorney questions if the findings are really valid given "x, y, and z" for the person.

    It is 100% worth it to apply, it's just a struggle. And he needs other resources to help him survive in the meantime.
    2 ACDFs, 2 PCDF, 3 LIFs; Rt TKR; Rt thumb fusion ; Lt thumb arthroplasty; Ehlers Danlos 
  • You're right, Kris. I was taking it too personal. Being too sensitive. Actually thought about it for a few days before I said anything. It bothered me that much. Tam's a good person. I know that. My head is back on straight. Thank you.

    AZ, you're right too. My struggle with SSDI was simple. Was accepted right away. My son has a traumatic brain injury from a car wreck then added brain surgery to repair it. He's done a lot towards recovery in the last four years - but the two neck surgeries have just slammed the hell out of him. His spirit and his body.

    The Cleveland Clinic did his neck surgeries with Charity funds. His last was done 3 mths. ago. None of us can afford his physical therapy needs. His head is at a 45 degree from his spine. Deformed looking. Even if he GOT on SSDI - he'd have to wait 24 mths for Medicare in order to GET PT. That makes me angry. He needs help NOW to make it POSSIBLE to work again. Medicare also...won't accept him onto my insurance until he's 26...like they're forcing all other insurance companies to do. wth???

    I'm fricking lost in my own spine issues and trying to help HIM. I think he has no choice but to swallow a bitter pill and move back home with me. I don't KNOW how to get him to realize the necessity of it. I wish I knew someone his age who's gone through surgeries...who could talk reality to him. What may be a temporary disability NOW will turn into a permanent one if he doesn't get help with this. Unfortunately, he's not female so he can't go out and get pregnant to apply for Medicaid. It burns me that pregnancy is deemed a disabiltiy in this country. I only had 6 weeks to spend off work with my babies! wth?

    Everyone has their own nightmares. I understand that. It's life.

    Thank you all.
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