September 17, 2019

When Should You Consider Amending Your Onset Date

When you file for disability, the Social Security intake clerk will ask you for a specific date when your disability began.  Similarly, if you file online, you will have to choose a date when you became disabled.  In Social Security terminology, this date will be known as your alleged onset date (abbreviated AOD).

Like many elements of Social Security claims, SSA offers no real guidance about how to choose an onset date.  Ideally, your onset date should be that date when you no longer have the capacity to perform substantial activity (full time work) because of a medical condition or conditions.

Most of the time, SSA personnel will advise you to choose a date after you stopped working – typically the day after you terminated your employment.   This “last day of work” choice usually works but what if you stopped working full time 6 months earlier and your last 6 months of part time work resulted in numerous absences.  Similarly, what happens if you stopped working because your company went out of business and your medical issues did not become a problem until 4 months after you stopped working?

In this video I talk about the idea of amending your onset date.  Social Security allows you to change the date when you claim that your disability began.  Sometimes this change will reflect the reality of your situation and other times it will reflect the medical record and what your lawyer believes he can argue successfully on your behalf.

Thinking about your onset date and considering possible changes ahead of time should be the main takeaway from this video.  Given that Social Security judges are under tremendous pressure to approve only deserving claims, you are more likely to face pressure from the judge to change your onset to reduce your past due benefit award.  Sometimes it will make sense to compromise and sometimes it is better to stand firm.

Should I Agree to Amend my Disability Onset Date? from Jonathan Ginsberg on Vimeo.

Episode 7

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In this installment, I answer two questions from listeners: 1) Ron writes to say that he has received a notice from Social Security demanding that he repay $70,000. They contend that he has been overpaid. They have further advised him that “it is too late to appeal” and they have stopped his monthly check. Does he have any options. Reconsideration of Overpayment calculation-form SSA-561-U2 Request for Waiver of Overpayment – form SSA-632-BK 2) Liliane writes to say that he has received a favorable decision on her SSI claim but the onset date for her disability shown on the decision is the date the actual application was completed, which is about a year after she initially contacted Social Security to start the application process. She wants to know if she has any recourse to collect that missing year.