A son’s appeal for an ailing mother | Inquirer Opinion

A son’s appeal for an ailing mother

09:03 PM September 16, 2011

Through the Inquirer, I would like to ask for the help of concerned officials regarding my mother’s disability claim with the US Social Security Administration (SSA). We filed her application for Widow’s Insurance Benefits (Disability) on Feb. 7, 2010. It was approved by the commissioner of the SSA on July 19, 2010 with an entitlement date of February 2010.

But then we were advised that she is not qualified for payments because she is an American citizen and she did not meet the five-year residency requirement for Alien Dependents/Survivors Provision. We filed a request for reconsideration, but this too was denied for the same reason.

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We appealed the case before an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ). The judge requested that we submit all necessary supporting documents pertaining to the matter. I sent my mother’s medical documents on June 27, 2011 via local courier. We received the notice of decision of the ALJ on July 5, 2011, affirming the previous decisions even before the medical records proving my mother’s disability were received.

We are now given 60 days to file an appeal before the Appeals Council. We filed the same on Aug. 12, 2011.

FEATURED STORIES

Although the issue for non-payment of benefits was determined, we firmly believe that she is entitled to payments due to her condition: disability benefits do not require citizenship or five years of residence in the United States. I received a letter from the SSA telling me that my mother’s request for reconsideration will take six more months. This looks like a strategy to delay the payment of my mother’s claim. We pray that this will be read by concerned officials so that my mother finally gets paid and that she may be given better medical care.

—JOSEPH RYAN LONGNANON,

c/o Milca Theresa L. Murray,

Hospicio De San Jose,

Ayala Bridge, Manila;

Email: [email protected]

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TAGS: disability, insurance benefits, Letters to the Editor, us social security
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