Monday, November 28, 2005

Keep it Secret, Keep it Safe

What’s in a name? For some it’s the word that other people call them. While for others, it is the only thing they have in this world. Strip of a person of everything he has and his name is the only thing that he will have left. Hence, our name is what distinguishes us from others - it is our identity.

But what happens when someone else assumes our identity? What happens when the only precious thing that we own is stolen from us? I saw this movie sometime ago about a woman whose identity was stolen by another person. The crook, who stole the other woman’s identity, used the credit cards to her advantage and bought everything she came across with even to the point of buying exactly the same car as the woman she robbed. When the woman learned about the identity theft, she reported it to the police and her credit card company. The crook learned that her victim knows of what she was doing and surprisingly the police found out who she was. But this did not stop her from using her victim’s identity. She even followed her one day to her house and talked to her victim. What is worse is that this crook was beginning to transform herself to the woman she stole her identity from. In short, she was becoming obsessed with her victim. But as the common notion says, good always triumph evil, and so the woman was caught and eventually put in a psychiatric hospital.

Harsh as it may seem but these things really happen today. Identity theft is one of the fastest growing crimes in the United States. Social Security numbers and credit card numbers are the often target of these criminals for they can obtain thousands of dollars from these accounts in just a short period of time. The victims often suffer significant amount of loss not only financially but also emotionally. They are broke and their credit reputation is at stake. It could take them months and even years before they are able to gain back what they have lost.

So what could you possibly do to avoid being a victim of identity theft? For one, you should be very careful on where you put your IDs and other important information about yourself. As much as possible never leave your wallet unattended or in open views. Leaving your wallet in open views gives the criminals a better chance of getting the information that they need. Additionally, never give any bank number, credit card number or social security number to anyone especially over the telephone and the Internet. Memorize your PIN numbers and keep it in a place that you only know about. Also, reconcile your check and credit card statements in a timely fashion.

If unfortunately you became a victim of identity theft, immediately report the incident to the police, to your bank, to your credit card company and to the Social Security office. And if things get worst, speak with a Social Security attorney without delay. Remember that a stolen credit card, bank or social security number can mean your financial security, your reputation or even your life. So keep everything about you secret and safe.

So what’s in a name? Maybe everything.

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Disabled and Broken? Remedies Available to You

Every year the Social Security Administration pays benefits to retired and disabled workers. And every year thousands of claimants are denied of their benefits. This is really frustrating to those individuals who are disabled and are unable to provide for their family. Where would they get the money to support their daily expenses?

Well, as a worker you are probably aware of the nature of the Social Security program. For those who do not know, Social Security is a federal program that is funded through payroll tax. It offers three programs namely retirement benefits, disability benefits and survivor’s benefits. So for instance you were injured in the course of performing your job and were unable to work for a period of twelve months, you can be eligible for Social Security disability benefits. You just have to meet the requirements of SSA to receive your benefits. But the sad fact is, even though you have completed the required documents and medical reports, most of Social Security disability claims are still turned down. It is for this reason that most claimants are discouraged from filing an appeal.

Picture this – your home mortgage is almost due, you have exhausted most of your money in the bank from buying a new car, and you have to pay your overdue debt from your friend. Then the worst thing happened to you – you got yourself injured in one of the machineries you use in your job. You have to have surgery and serious medical attention. Finally, your doctor said you will likely be unable to work for quite a while. It sucks right? So in times like this who are you gonna call? Ghostbusters? Nah….In times like this you have to put your trust and confidence to a Social Security Disability lawyer.

Remember that a having lawyer on your side can significantly increase your chance of receiving the benefit you deserve. So do not wait till it’s too late to claim. Time is gold so get your claim started as soon as possible.

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Breaking News on Social Security Disability Benefits

The breaking news on social security disability benefits would certainly break the spirits of members. According to this article there would be some changes in the agency that I know members would not be so glad to know.

The elimination of the reconsideration appeal levels is in some way like taking away the remaining hopes of members to get hold of their benefits. Though it may be true that such endeavor maybe time consuming and a waste of effort but these appeals give members hope and taking away this right is unjust and inhuman.

The attorney advisors is for me a great hoax, imagine getting these so-called advisors to review your claim only to be rejected again because these advisors are not there to help the claimants but to strengthen the decision of the agency to refuse or deny the claim the second time around.

Then there is the elimination of the Appeals Council, the outcome of this would result to all unfavorable ALJ’s decision to be appealed to the Federal District. Plus there is the closure of the record at hearing meaning that all records are going to be closed while the case is still in the Office of Hearings and Appeals which therefore gives claimants little time to obtain and submit potential evidences. And we know what this means…lost opportunity to file our claims.

As I try to analyze the situation it seems like the agency is trying to get away from their obligations by coming up with proposals wherein their members are provided with the littlest chance of recovering for benefits. I ask you my dear friends, what do you think? Is this some plot to let us approve the privatization of the social security? Or is this the agency’s way of cutting down on benefits in the guise of rejecting claims? Because it seems that the agency is pressing too much pressure on us.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

The Truth Behind The Fund Problem Of Social Security

It’s so sad to know that the government that’s supposed to protect its citizen is the one rubbing its people of its benefits. The issue on the social security is slowly clearing up especially on the issue on funding.

To better understand, let us first discuss on where the social security get its funding. The social security is funded by a payroll tax---meaning that a certain percentage is taken off from the paychecks of members with a matched contribution from the employers. The maximum deductible income of each person is only up to the first 90k of his or her income.

The contribution is then accumulated to pay for future benefits of retiring members as well as benefits for the beneficiaries. The ideal social security setup is where paying members are much higher in number compared to the number of beneficiaries. Any surplus fund is placed on a trust fund in anticipation of future shortage of benefits.

In the year 2003 the social security has accumulated a surplus of $156 billion which was used by the government in covering up some of its deficit. How? Easy!-the surplus fund of the social security was invested in a US Treasury Bonds (it’s the safest and the most legal way for the government of rubbing social security members of their benefits…ha-ha). The US Treasury Bonds are considered to be the safest form of investment (?) on earth since they are issued by the government. These Treasury Bonds are expected to be cashed in if ever there would be some shortage on the benefits to be paid.

The problem now is that “Mr. Big Guy” in the White house denies that it had used up the trust fund of the social security. He must have contacted amnesia when he had applied the $156 billion social security surplus plus the $5 billion surplus of the postal service in covering up for the $536 Billion deficit of his administration.

I hope Mr. Bush recover soon from his amnesia and remembers that he has great responsibility for the funds he has taken not only to the social security agency but more on the hardworking Americans who are the recipients of the fund he has taken.

This blog article is courtesy of Los Angeles Social Security Attorney. Los Angeles Social Security Attorney is comprised of caliber lawyers that are expert in providing legal solutions for various social security related cases.

Sunday, October 02, 2005

The Way I See It….

I hate to be the devils advocate but I’m just sick and tired of reading on blogs that criticized the social security reform agenda of Pres. Bush. I am not saying that I agree with the “big guy” but at least he has come up with ways on how to help the system.

For all those great minds out there what can you suggest the social security agency to do in order to increase its funds? Because to tell you honestly the agency really is in dire need of funds. And if we want for it to continuously serve its purpose we should all pitch in to help. But for one thing, social security members will not agree to increase their contributions if they are to receive the same scheduled amount of benefits. So where do we go from here?

We don’t want the big guy’s suggestion and we don’t want either to pay additional social security contributions. The way I see it the social security requires reforms but not the reform that the big guy wants. In my opinion I think there are certain provisions in the Social Security that needs to be revise or removed especially pertaining to the beneficiaries as well as to the benefits to be given. I notice so many provisions that require amendment like these provisions for example:

I really don’t see any significance of these provisions. I feel like this is an example of an incorrect channeling of benefits. I just don’t get the logic behind this provision. I mean the social security is going to provide benefits for the divorced spouse and at the same time providing benefit for the current spouse. The agency is paying too much for these benefits alone. What do you think?

By the way for all those who may have Social Security related cases there is one company in California that specializes in handling such cases. Social Security Attorney Services is a Law firm that specializes in various social security issues. They also have top caliber lawyers to provide you with expert court representation that ensure successful outcome of your case.

Thursday, September 29, 2005

Social Security After The Hurricane

Hurricane Katrina and Rita has destroyed not only properties but also has greatly caused the death of so many Americans. The big question now is whether the social security has enough funds to provide beneficiaries with their benefits. It is common knowledge that the social security is facing financial problem and a sudden influx of claims is not what the social security is in need right now. But then as part of their obligation they are mandated by law to provide their members with the service and the benefits that are due to them.

With the present state of the social security all possibilities of reforms seems to be a distant possibility. The destructions cause by the hurricane has caused a great number of social security members their jobs and without their jobs they won’t be able to pay for their contributions. And without members’ contributions the social security agency will have a limited source of fund. The agency having scarce resources won’t be able to answer the claims of its members which is rather sad especially for members who are expecting to claim for benefits to help them through this crisis.

I don’t know if the government is already doing something about this problem (but I hope and pray they are) because so many social security members are counting on them for help. I know that most Americans have lost confidence in the government but I still do believe that crisis brings out the best in people and I know that there are still some caring people in the government.

Crisis brings with it lawsuits so for those who may have Social Security related cases there will always be a Social Security Lawyer to help you go through the whole legal ordeal.

Monday, September 12, 2005


I am amaze by how some people in the Social Security Commission think of so little of what their agency is worth. Now, its no longer a wonder why the social security is at the edge of extinction. I thought that in order for a business to prosper the people who handles it must have great faith not only in themselves but also in the products and services they are offering but after reading on the editorial showcasing John F. Cogan things have become much clearer.

The incompetence of members of the social security commission that handles the agency as well as their lack of faith onto the system they are managing is a clear indication of why the social security is in its depressing state right now. I believe that the reforms should include reshuffling of the members of the social security commission this way the negative force inside the agency will be totally eliminated and thus giving way to a new social security agency.

Let us give social security a chance. I thought the US government is comprised of great minds then why can’t any one of them create a reform that would save the social security? Social security is supposed to be a safety net for elderly American citizens and what good is a net if it has so many holes? The social security is a net that requires major patching and what better way than to create reforms that will provide solutions for the betterment of the agency rather than abolishing the agency.

I know that I am not that knowledgeable when it comes to the “workings” when it comes to social security but there’s one thing I am sure of and that is the social security is a beneficial program that requires reforms. And aside from that I also know that a social security lawyer is a plus factor especially when dealing with a denied claim.