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Social Security offices remain closed, woman having issues with proving her disability

3 months 2 weeks 6 days ago Tuesday, June 08 2021 Jun 8, 2021 June 08, 2021 7:58 PM June 08, 2021 in News
Source: WBRZ

UPDATE: The SSA reached out to Jackson within a day of Wednesday's 2 On Your Side report and told her that representatives had been trying to reach her at the wrong phone number for two months. 

Jackson was told the federal database still says she's not legally blind, and the agency is still debating the amount of benefits she receives each month. She's not sure when she'll hear back again but was told by an agent that her Medicare was not supposed to be cut off.

She is still waiting for her benefits.

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BATON ROUGE - A woman is having a tough time getting her social security benefits reinstated even though she says she won an appeal to do just that.

Lakisa Jackson has been on disability for at least 20 years. She's legally blind and has a doctor's note that says so. But in the last year, she's had some issues with her social security benefits.

"My lights are off. I can't pay rent," Jackson said. "They're taking all my benefits."

She received an overpayment letter in the mail in November that said the Social Security Administration had determined her disability has ended and she's no longer eligible for benefits as of January 2019. The letter said her work activity shows her ability to do substantial work. Jackson has held several part-time jobs over the years but says the administration's records are wrong and they show her holding certain jobs for longer than she did.

She filed an appeal and says she won. In January, she was told it would be 30-45 days before those monthly benefits would start up again. She says she received her benefits for May, but nothing else.

"I don't have any money, about to be homeless," she said.

It's had a domino effect in her life and has now affected her ability to go see a doctor. She says her Medicare has been revoked.

"I didn't even know I didn't have insurance until I went to the doctor," Jackson said.

For months, Jackson says she's been calling the Social Security Administration since offices have been closed for most in-person appointments since March 2020 due to the pandemic.

"Every time I call they put me on hold and they never come back," she said.

People at the social security office in Baton Rouge Tuesday were turned away at the door.

Two On Your Side contacted the Social Security Administration about Jackson's case. There's no word from the feds on when she will get her money. The administration says it isn't seeing anyone in person unless they're applying for a social security number, and there's no word when it will fully reopen again.

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