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Having represented clients in Social Security Disability/SSI claims for the past 31 years, I have had the opportunity to hear (and dispel) an endless amount of misinformation, misunderstanding, and misinterpretation about the way the Social Security system works and how disability benefits are actually awarded.  This is understandable, given the complexity of Social Security’s rules and regulations.


Karen P. Sampson, Esq.
As an attorney and a mediator, I appreciate the importance of discussing alternatives to litigious divorce. Most of us have either personally experienced, or know someone who has experienced, a nasty litigious divorce.  Litigious divorce may result in overwhelming stress, enormous legal fees, an uncontrolled outcome, and a deteriorated relationship with the ex-spouse.  It doesn’t have to be like that.  There are alternatives.

Having represented clients in Social Security Disability/SSI claims for the past 30 years,
I have had the opportunity to hear (and dispel) an endless amount of misinformation, misunderstanding and misinterpretation about the way the Social Security system works and how disability benefits are actually awarded.  This is understandable, given the complexity of Social Security’s rules and regulations. 


Karen P. Sampson, Esq.
For those of you who have personally experienced divorce litigation, you may agree that the process can be emotionally and mentally stressful as well as financially draining.   The thought of having to fight “tooth and nail” in court can be terrifying, and the life transitions that naturally come with divorce can be overwhelming.

In my last column, I explained how many disabled individuals (particularly women) get rejected for Social Security Disability benefits because they don’t have a “recent” work history.  I illustrated this through the hypothetical story of “Julia,” an MS victim who was financially ineligible for Social Security Disability benefits despite having worked as a fulltime RN for 14 years.


Karen P. Sampson, Esq.
Last week John told Sue (fictional characters) he wanted a divorce. Sue knew their twenty-year marriage was rocky and that their numerous marriage counseling sessions had not improved their situation, but she never thought John would insist on a divorce.

Few applicants for Social Security Disability benefits are aware that the Social Security Act requires that, not only must a worker have accrued sufficient “quarters of coverage” through the payment of FICA taxes, but that there must also be sufficient recent earnings in order to be eligible for disability benefits.

Few applicants for Social Security Disability benefits are aware that the Social Security Act requires that, not only must a worker have accrued sufficient “quarters of coverage” through the payment of FICA taxes, but that there must also be sufficient recent earnings in order to be eligible for disability benefits.  In Social Security parlance, one must not only be “fully insured,” but must also be “disability insured” in order to be eligible for benefits. 
If you read my first two columns about disability insurance, you should now have a basic understanding of both the need to protect one’s ability to earn an income and the essential features of disability insurance policies.  What happens, however, if you actually suffer the misfortune of a disability, file a claim, provide all the necessary documentation to the insurance company and then have your claim denied (or terminated)?
While most Americans insure their lives and material assets, like their homes, cars, etc., many overlook the need to protect their most valuable asset  — the ability to earn an income.

President Barack Obama issued the following proclamation on October 1, 2009, asking all Americans to do their part to end domestic violence. Please join Camden County Woman Magazine in our efforts to raise awareness of domestic violence during Domestic Violence Awareness Month 2010. 
As Camden County Surrogate, I have constantly been made aware of efforts by various entities that send postcards, invitations or other forms of mailings to our senior population contacting them with the theme:  “Avoid probate and estate taxes.”


While most Americans insure their lives and material assets, like their homes, cars, etc., many overlook the need to protect their most valuable asset — the ability to earn an income.

One of the most common questions I am asked by people applying for Social Security Disability and SSI benefits is: “Do I need a lawyer for this or can I just do it on my own?”


It’s never pleasant to receive mail from the IRS. No one ever wants to see that return address in their mailbox.

The Social Security Disability (SSD) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) entitlement programs are the product of the first major expansion of the Social Security Act in 1954.   Here are a few of the most common myths, which many people have come to believe as truth.



Listen to your doctor. This strengthens your chances of winning when you make a disability claim, while also (it is hoped), helping restore to you some quality of life.

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