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Thread: New York State Disability Retirement System

  1. #46
    Member dtwarren's Avatar
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    I have represented several SSD/SSI Claimants and it is getting to the point were I do not go out of my way to cooperate with NYS OTDA on the initial claim hoping that they would deny sooner rather than later. Out of all the claimants I represented (starting at the initial application) all of them were initially denied and all of them were granted the SSD/SSI at the appeals stage. (Two were granted before the hearing based on the record and in the absence of me requesting an on the record determination).
    “I own I am not a friend to a very energetic government. It is always oppressive.” – Thomas Jefferson, Letter to James Madison, 1787

  2. #47
    Member zinger's Avatar
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    As I said before I was very fortunate with my case it never went to an appeal hearing, from what I was told that is very rare. I know many people that I have been talking to are now waiting for an appeal hearing somewhere around 24 months. People that are waiting for an answer from their
    initial application and it is not rejected you will get a letter from Social Secuirity Administration Retirement Survivors and Disability Insurance it will read like this.

    "As a result of our additional review, we have found that you meet all the medical requirements for disability benefits. Therefore, it is not necessary to have your case decided at a hearing level." There is more to the letter but that is the most import part.

  3. #48
    Member zinger's Avatar
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    On the NYSRS workers that have been rejected their disability and have been awarded SSD (federal) for the same work related injuries you can contact Senator Clintons office on this matter. It will be her NYC office ask for state affaires or labor affaires. They will get back to you in a day this office is excellant to deal with. They are aware of the problems that injured workers are having with the state disability system. You will fax all your paper work to them do not mail any paper work and they will review your case. They have filed a complaint with my case with the state comptrollers office. Also you can contact her office on Social security issues. The politicians around here just keep passing the issue(NYSDRS) back and forth to each other so don't waste to much time writing letters to them.


    New York City
    Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton
    780 Third Ave
    Suite 2601
    New York, NY 10017
    Phone: (212) 688-6262
    Fax: (212) 688-7444

  4. #49
    Member zinger's Avatar
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    This week I attended several events in the local area, which not to my surprise I hear once again how the NYSRS has screwed the injured worker. I got a chance to talk to an orthopedic doctor from this area that has handled many comp cases and cases dealing with the NYSDRS. As I learned nothing new about this broken system he did say that most politicians know about this system but refuse to look at it. I also had a chance to talk to an attorney that handles a lot of appeal cases for clients that are dealing with the state. One interesting thing is that if you are awarded your SSD (federal) for the same injures that the state has denied you it cannot be brought up at your appeal hearing with the state that you are receiving this benefit (what a joke that is). I also asked the good doctor about the medical board the people that make the decisions on your medical reports for the state. In my words I’ll put it like this a bunch of doctors that sit in a room and play games with peoples lives. It is bureaucracy at it’s worst, a broken system that needs to be reformed, but will it ever happen? It is a very cruel system that most of its applicants are rejected. I do believe in fraud and there is always some trying to take advantage of the system. But as doctors tell me with today’s medicine and enough proof that a person is hurt due to job related injuries I do not understand this system at all. As one doctor put it the state is 3 billion dollars in the hole and do you think the state would give someone that is hurt anything. So people get out and vote this November we have to get these career politicians out we have a lot of new candidates running in different districts all over WNY. I have been invited to a local area PBA meeting and I am planning to get a good deal of petitions signed.

  5. #50
    Member zinger's Avatar
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    If you are thinking of appealing your decision for your disability retirement with the state this is what will happen. You will get a date from the state on when it is to take place. It will take place in the state building, New York
    State and Local Retirement Systems 65 Court Street-room 500 Buffalo New York. This is a video conference hearing this means the attorney for the NYSDRS will be in Albany during the appeal process. Before all said and done this appeal process could take up to a year.

  6. #51
    Member zinger's Avatar
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    New York State Workers' Compensation Board
    Statement of Rights and Obligations Independent Medical Examinations



    The claimant must receive notice by mail of the scheduled independent medical examination at least seven business days prior to such examination. The notice must advise the claimant if the practitioner intends to record or videotape the examination.
    If the examination was requested by the claimant, the claimant may be responsible for the cost of the examination, and the health provider must indicate on the notice of examination the actual fee or the fee range for the examination.
    All independent medical examinations shall be performed in medical facilities suitable for such exam,with due regard and respect for the privacy and dignity of the injured worker/claimant.
    Examination facilities must be provided in a safe, convenient and accessible location within a reasonable distance from the claimant's residence. Examinations will be held during regular business hours, except with the consent and for the convenience of the claimant.
    All independent medical examinations shall be performed by a practitioner competent to evaluate or examine the injury or disease from which the claimant suffers. A practitioner is not eligible to perform an independent medical examination of a claimant if the practitioner has treated or examined the claimant for the condition for which the examination is being requested, or if another member of the preferred provider organization or managed care provider to which the practitioner belongs has treated or examined the claimant for the condition for which the examination is being requested.
    The claimant has the right to videotape or otherwise record the examination.
    The claimant has the right to be accompanied during the examination by an individual or individuals of his/her choosing.
    The claimant has the right to be reimbursed for travel expenses to and from the examination site, if the examination was requested by the insurance carrier or employer.
    A copy of each report of independent medical examination shall be submitted by the practitioner on the same day and in the same manner to the Workers' Compensation Board, the insurance carrier, the claimant's attending physician or other attending practitioner, the claimant's representative, if any, and the claimant.
    The claimant's receipt of benefits could be denied, terminated, or reduced as a result of a determination, made by the Workers' Compensation Board, which may be based upon a medical evaluation made after an independent medical examination. However, the ability of the claimant to appear for an examination or hearing shall not in itself determine questions of disability, extent of disability or eligibility for benefits.
    In any open case where an award has been directed by the Board for temporary or permanent disability at an established rate of compensation, and there is a direction by the Board for continuation of payments, or any closed case where an award for compensation has been made for permanent total or permanent partial disability, a report of an independent medical examination shall not be the basis for suspending or reducing payments unless and until the rules and regulations of the Board regarding suspending or reducing payments have been met and there is a determination by the Board finding that such suspension or reduction is justified.
    The claimant has the right to appeal any Workers' Compensation Board determination, including determinations based on an independent medical examination. The Board's notice of decision contains full instructions and time limitations for filing an appeal

  7. #52
    Member zinger's Avatar
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    I have posted your Rights and Obligations on Independent Medical Examinations I have had many questions on IME's my best answer would be if you are having problems with them contact your comp attorney. In my cases over the years I was sent to many IME's but one was really bad. As I seen this IME maybe three times a year he tells me that no matter how hurt you are I only give fifty percent on a disability. So now he has all my records
    and the NYSWCB states I have a marked degree of disability of seventy five percent and SSD(federal) states that I am now disabiled. So now you have a IME that ignores the whole system and tells me now matter what, he gives only fifty percent. I can only imagine how many injured workers this guy screwed out of their benifits. I have since then reported him to the injured workers group. I did not have any body go with me at the time of the exam
    so now it's his word aganist mine. That is why it is very important to have someone go with you when going to an IME exam.

  8. #53
    Member Chant's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zinger
    In my cases over the years I was sent to many IME's but one was really bad. As I seen this IME maybe three times a year he tells me that no matter how hurt you are I only give fifty percent on a disability.
    Okay, this statement right there if made by an insurance doctor is probably enough to make him or her scream that his right to privacy had been violated if this had been videoed (with audio) or just audio recorded.

    Now, the rules you IMed me, and posted here are from November of 2001. The privacy laws in NYS have grown much stricter since then and even these do not specifically mention anything about audio.
    Now... if you can find out for sure that in the case of IME visits, the state privacy laws are not enforced or applible in that case (where you have to have every parties involves verbal permission to record stated in the recording itself), Then you could have just brought a small audio recorder and not have had to legally informed the doctor or asked his permission to record.
    Had he made this statement then (or in the future if its legal), you might have his a$$ in a sling somewhere done the road. Or your attorney might be able to have his report thrown out if its not favorable to your case.

    Obviously, a doctor is not going to make such a statement into the face of a video camera that is also recording audio. A small audio recorder sitting in your opened briefcase, fanny pack pocket, or large file folder might be overlooked or not noticed at all. (Avoid wearing it on your person BTW, they pick up all the rustling of your clothing)
    Again... only if it turns out to be legal to do so without the doctor's permission during a IME meeting.

  9. #54
    Member cheekman's Avatar
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    Did you have to see an IME for your SSD claim if so was it local or did you have to go out of this area?

  10. #55
    Member zinger's Avatar
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    SSD will send you to see a doctor, most of the time it will be in this area. From people at pain management groups some have told me that they were sent twice to the doctor but really had no problems with any of them. My case I never seen a doc my med reports were reviewed by ssd and that is how they decieded. Now NYSDRS that is all toghter different they will make you wait two years until they get the right answer from their IME. Then your appeal case could take a year so now your into this over three years. That is why the changes need to be made with the NYSRS they could careless if you wait three years!

  11. #56
    Member zinger's Avatar
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    I received this email from a another person getting screwed by the NYSRS that is why this system needs to be reformed.


    Unbelievable got workers compensation, approved for SSDI first time around, then NYS denied medical retirement, What gives? As taxpayers it is sad that we have multiple agencies, each with their own set of standards for determining disability. I really got irrate to think that the decision made for SSDI was done by the Dvision of Determination Services, ( a New York State agency) then the retirement system wasted additional funding to get an opinion from an IME. So the break down is that SSDI says there is a disability, workers compensation says there is a disability, and even the veterans administration says there is a disability, but the New York State retirement system says there is not. Meanwhile 3 years after the initial accident still awaiting 3 surgeries, makes me happy that I worked for 40 years. To make it worse I know people in jail , on welfare and on SSDI who have had two or three surgeries, while I wait. What a great state.

  12. #57
    Member zinger's Avatar
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    Just like I was saying with the IME's with the state. They will make you wait and wait and then find the right IME they want you to be seen by and bingo they have the answer they wanted now you have to go to court and fight it! Just remember who made these laws the POLITICIANS!

    Lots of email have been coming in I will try to answer them best I can if not I have been sending emails to some of you were to get it. I'll try to get some of them answers up tomorrow.
    Last edited by zinger; June 16th, 2008 at 08:40 PM.

  13. #58
    Member zinger's Avatar
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    On the question of SSD (federal) attorneys and fees, you can file your case with or without an attorney. In most cases your case will go to and appeal hearing then you will need an attorney for your SSD case. The attorney fee will vary it is based on the amount
    of the award that you receive from your case. There is a limit on the fee the attorney will receive I believe it is around five thousand dollars that would be the max. The attorney fee if taken out of the award automatically you will see this in your award statement when your case is completed. I have received emails from people who are down and out because they are not working due to their injuries and cannot afford an attorney. I do have some attorney’s names just email me and I can send them to you. I do have more names than last month they all are SSD attorneys so you can choose.

    If you go to this site on left side of the left side of the page you will see links click on SSD it will take you right to the SSA home page lots of information here.


    www.injuredworkersofnewyork.org

  14. #59
    Member zinger's Avatar
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    Question:
    Now, this is interesting, because its against the law in NYS to audiotape a conversation without the other party's verbal permission on the tape. (Even though NYS is a "one-party" state for recording conversations over the phone - go figure???)

    Whenever I have to do a recorded witness statement, there's a special format that has to be followed, and the first part of that format has to do with getting the interviewee's verbal permission on tape to record the conversation/interview. And every time we start or stop the recorder for any reason, we have to began the session again with that permission statement.

    When we do surveillance videos, the audio on the camera has to be plugged or turned off.

    So, how can one get around the privacy laws regarding recording private conversations for an IME visit? If the doctor declines to be recorded, you are basically violating the privacy law by going ahead and doing so. Is there some stature that nulls the state law and allows audio recording for doctor or IME visit?

    I'm curious to know if there is."


    I received this answer from MJ from injured workers group.
    According to our lawyers you can audiotape someone in NY without their knowledge as long as it is just you and them but not if there are TWO people who don't know.

  15. #60
    Member zinger's Avatar
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    Something that I will be hitting on soon is the poiliticial part the injured worker plays. I have talked to many employees over the last four months that are under the NYSRS system, I would say ninety percent of them told me the only way to change the laws is through the politicians and pressure to get them changed. I was going through some emails last weekend and one really sort of hit me it was from a young man about nineteen years old he told me his dad was injured at work about three years ago and has not worked since then. He told me somethings that his dad has been going through over the last three years. He said he is very active on speakupwesternny and has been reading a lot of the posts on this link, but it was his last sentence of his email that tells it all "You know zinger I have never voted in election before but I am registered now!"
    Last edited by zinger; June 18th, 2008 at 10:22 PM.

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