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College While Waiting For SSDI?


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I've applied for both SSDI & SSI about 2 months ago and I'm just waiting for approval or denial.

I am going CRAZY with nothing to do all friggen day!!!

So would going to school while waiting for the decision be a good or bad idea? Just part time for Art Therapy

 

Whatdyathink????

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I would like to encourage you ... but an assessment of your daily functioning is an integral part of any disability claim. Attending a part-time class -- on a pass / fail basis -- may be okay, but there is a chance that you may be determined to be more functional than you are actually are. Do so at your own risk.

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Sadly there is no fixed answer. You could be approved within 6 months of your initial application or with appeals it could drag out past two years. And of course there is no guarantee that you will be ultimately approved.

 

That's what I was thinking as well...do you know how long the decision process takes?

Edited by Retromancer
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I would suggest you not tell your  pdoc or tdoc what you are doing. If someone needs updated records they could see you have been going to college and use that against you in qualifying. Same with volunteering.

This is... interesting?

I mean... why not tell doctors what you are doing?

I see why you say not, but not any actual reasoning going on here.

If your doctors think that you can function well on a part time basis structured in the way school is, but see a clear difficulty with self-support, they would be willing to attest to that specific distinction.

If they don't agree that there is a clear difference or believe that your current abilities go beyond just part time in the class room- that should really be addressed before applying for disability in the first place.

Edited by Josie
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If I were you, I wouldn't be in school when applying for SSDI or SSI. Going to school means that you are working your way toward getting a job and that someday you will probably get a job. Going to school shows that you think you will be able to handle a work environment. I am on SSI, but I got it because I really can't work. I can't even go to school. I got my SSI within 2 or 3 months of applying, but everyone is different. I hope that all works well for you. 

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I was going to college while I was waiting for the decision for SSDI and was approved the first 3 months. I was doing an online college, so I don't know if that makes any kind of difference.

 

Personally if I were you I would maintain the status quo. 

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If I were you, I wouldn't be in school when applying for SSDI or SSI. Going to school means that you are working your way toward getting a job and that someday you will probably get a job. Going to school shows that you think you will be able to handle a work environment. I am on SSI, but I got it because I really can't work. I can't even go to school.

I mean, that's valid.

But also- there's ticket to work and such for people on SSDI. Which is something to consider.

People don't only get approved for conditions that are never expected to improve ever ever ever, either.

Edited by Josie
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There is also Vocational Rehabilitation that can help you with training, job placement and support. It is available for anyone with a disability. What Vocational Rehabilitation cannot do however is pay your rent and/or provide you medical care while you avail yourself of their services.
 

I mean, that's valid.

But also- there's ticket to work and such for people on SSDI. Which is something to consider.

People don't only get approved for conditions that are never expected to improve ever ever ever, either.

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I am at the Reconsideration phase for SSDI. I applied for SSDI early this March and received my first denial in May. That was after consultive exams ordered by SSDI for a regular MD visit and a psychologist visit. They ordered those out of procedure. My mental illness is documented some 13 years now. Anyway, consultive exams and a first denial has been my experience thus far. 

 

My instincts would tell me that if you are attending college, and attending it regularly without excessive absences and while passing, I don't think that you would be approved for SSI or SSDI. Attending college may not show substantial gainful activity (SGA) that working does, but I think that it would demonstrate capability to work and expectation of working to Social Security. 

 

No one would want to recommend that you not attend college though. I might wait until I received the approval or denial. If denied, you would either be at Reconsideration phase or the court hearing phase (depending on your state), and at either of those points, you could get a lawyer and they could advise you about school before you make any decision. 

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  • 1 month later...

I know this is on old topic, but I just wanted to put in my experience.  I attended grad school part time through the entire SSDI application process.  It was actually the fact that I was unable to pass classes going full time that finally convinced me to apply.  It took about two years from first application until I was approved in the actual court date phase.  I can't remember what it's called, but I was denied twice, had to get a lawyer, and then wait for a court date.  I was approved based on physical health issues, and there is still hope that they will get better.  So, doing something to improve myself in the mean time is important to me.  Also, student loans helped me to pay living expenses while I was waiting for approval.  WIthout them, I would have been homeless.

 

When it came time to testify in front of  the judge, and he asked about me going to school, I pointed out that I only had to sit in classes for 6 hours a week, and that the rest of the work was done as I could do it at home.  I also pointed out that I had special accomodations to get me through classes despite the fact that I was going part time. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

When I first applied, I wasn't working. That was in 2008, and I was approved on my first try. During my continuing disability review three years later, I was attending college part-time. It took the SSA 14 months to render an approval on my CDR, and I believe college had a lot to do with that.

From what a lawyer I consulted with told me, the ssa looks at how many hours a week you would spend in school and doing homework. If its equal to a full time job in the number of hours, then you might run into some problems because then you might be considered functioning at a high enough level to work.

I had my pdoc write a letter in my CDR packet that specifically stated that I could handle the small social contacts of school, but in no way was I ready for the workforce due to the extreme anxiety and paranoia I get when I'm put into stressful work situations.

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