Woman with multiple disabilities deny rightful benefits

Ms. Flecks came to Inner City Law Center for assistance appealing the denial of her claim for disability benefits. She suffers daily from challenges and barriers, including PTSD, depression, lupus, arthritis, macular degeneration, rheumatic aortic disease, and atrophic kidney. The Social Security Administration’s analysis did not find any of these conditions disabling enough to award benefits to Ms. Flecks. Inner City Law Center’s position was that these conditions were disabling in combination—a much more difficult case to prove. Ms. Fleck’s claim was denied by the Administrative Law Judge (ALJ), and Inner City Law Center appealed that decision to the Appeals Council, who sent the case back to the ALJ. After two additional hearings, another issue arose—when did Ms. Flecks’ disability begin? The ALJ initially favored using a date in 2019, but ICLC argued for a date in 2016, at the time her claim was first filed, citing medical records from that time. Ms. Flecks received a fully favorable decision, with an onset date of October 2016. In addition to monthly disability benefits of $1,040, Ms. Flecks will receive retroactive benefits that will likely exceed $40,000.

*Name changed to protect identity of client. Photo not representation of any particular client.