Crowe & Shanahan
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Blowing up a Social Security office won't help

Last month, a man in Florida plead guilty to criminal charges after threatening to blow up a Social Security office in the state. He had apparently lost his Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits and was attempting to intimidate SSA employees into restoring them.

Now, we understand that many individuals who apply for SSD benefits, or perhaps are thinking about applying, are intimidated with the complexity of the process, and many become very frustrated with the process. They may have applied, received a denial and have appealed that denial. They are enmeshed in the hearings and the requests for additional documentation, or the requirements for updated medical tests, and have become frustrated, wondering if they will ever receive their disability benefits.

No matter how frustrated you may become with the disability process, threatening employees in an SSA office is really bad idea. In fact, it is a serious federal crime. Yes, the application process is very bureaucratic, with a very demanding application, often requiring large quantities of supporting documents.

If your medical condition is not as severe as those defined within one of SSA's Compassionate Allowances, your approval may take additional time, given the complex nature of the assessment being done by the claims examiner.

They have to review all of your medical records, the treatments you have received or are receiving, surgeries you have undergone, medication you are taking and all other relevant aspects of your medical history.

Your best strategy for obtaining quick approval of disability benefits is to have a complete and accurate application, with current medical records that accurately document your disabling condition and present a comprehensive picture of your health.

Your medical condition, when combined with your work and educational history, can present a compelling picture of why you can no longer work and genuinely need SSD benefits. Threatening to blow up an SSA office will not further your cause, unless you would like to be a "guest of the government" for a long time.

Source:, "Man pleads guilty to bomb threat on Social Security office," Zack McDonald, May 7, 2015

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