Help for SSD Applicants with ALS (Lou Gehrig’s Disease)

June 9, 2017

There is a bill in Congress, the ALS Disability Insurance Access Act of 2017 (S.379), that would waive the five-month waiting period for Social Security Disability Insurance currently in place for patients who have been diagnosed with ALS.

The ALS Foundation describes amyotrophic laterals sclerosis (ALS) as a progressive, neurodegenerative disease that is 100% fatal. ALS causes progressive deterioration of the motor neurons, which reach from the brain to the spinal cord, and from the spinal cord to the muscles throughout the body. This interrupts the brain’s ability to direct the body’s movements, and causes those suffering with ALS to lose the ability to speak, move, eat and breathe.

There are two different types of ALS: familial and sporadic. The disease typically strikes people when they are between the ages of 40 and 70 years old with about 20,000 Americans suffering with this disease.

If the new law is passed, people with ALS would be able to start receiving SSDI and Medicare benefits right away. The current law requires the five-month waiting period regardless of the severity of the symptoms. This legislation builds on previous actions taken by Congress and the Social Security Administration (SSA) in 2000 in allowing people with ALS to be eligible for Medicare immediately by dropping the previous 24-month waiting period.

In an article in ALS News Today, Barbara Newhouse, President and CEO of the ALS Association, said, “This legislation is especially important for people with ALS, for whom five months can mean the difference between life and death. Nearly half of those living with ALS will die within 16 months of diagnosis, so it’s critical that they receive the benefits they deserve and have paid for as quickly as possible.”

If you or someone you care about has been diagnosed with ALS, there is not a moment to lose. If you are looking for a strong legal advocate to guide you through the application process, if your application has been denied or if you are facing any other challenges with you application for Social Security Disability benefits, a seasoned Philadelphia SSDI attorney from the law firm of Larry Pitt & Associates is ready to serve you.

The Philadelphia SSDI lawyers at Larry Pitt & Associates are here to help SSDI applicants prepare their application and get approved for disability benefits. To schedule a no-obligation consultation with an experienced SSDI lawyer, you may contact us or call 888.PITT.LAW for help. We get results for clients throughout Berks, Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery, and Philadelphia Counties.