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Social Security Did Not Just Say That!

Posted on in Social Security Disability

I went to court last week for one of my clients who passed away during the Social Security disability benefits process. Unfortunately, the process can take several years to go through and it is not uncommon for this to happen. To make sure that her case continued, our firm had my client's son complete a substitute party form and appear in court on her behalf. The judge reviewed our Pre-Hearing Memorandum and issued a fully-favorable decision on the spot. In other words, we won the case. However, the judge noted that there was another company that was originally on the record for this case and he did not see any letter from the deceased telling that company to withdraw from her case. I assured the judge that she had sent a copy of the letter to the Social Security Administration District Office before she had passed away.

Today, my office received a phone call from the Social Security Administration regarding this matter. The person who called from Social Security stated, "We received the letter asking the other company to withdraw last year, but wanted to know if she could write another updated letter and send it to us?" Let me get this straight, Social Security wants my client, who by the way passed away, to now write an updated letter to them. I can only presume that somebody working for the government overlooked a pretty important piece of information. But, what if they were serious? How would the letter go? Below is my take on what Social Security was looking for...

Dear Social Security Administration,

I passed away because of my sickle cell anemia. I would have liked to get monetary help from you while I was alive, but because the process took so long, it looks like you won't be helping me personally any time soon. My disability lawyer tried to contact me when you requested that I write an updated letter for him, but he hasn't been able to do so. Fortunately for him, I was watching my case and heard what you had said. I can't write a letter, obviously, but if I wrote a message in the clouds and you were able to look up and read it, would that meet your requirements?

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