What Should Be My Mother's Next Course Of Action?

Mar 29 2018 - 3:59pm


I wrote to you in January regarding my mother's situation.

"My mother is entitled to 6 months of retroactive payment from Social Security due to the RIB-LIM rule. My father had taken Social Security 3 years early, so my mother should have taken her payment immediately after he died in December 2016. However, she thought she had to wait until her FRA, and I didn't know about RIB-LIM until I came across your website."

My mother did not receive 6 months of retroactive payment, and we went to file a former reconsideration request as you suggested. Unfortunately there was not a technical expert or claims representative to quickly resolve this issue at the office we went to, and the appeal was filed. She still has not received a response to her appeal. If she does not receive a response, what should her next course of action be?

In general, my mother knows very little about these matters, and I do not have time to devote to the issue. Can you recommend any attorneys that handle these sort of cases? Given that she is owed 12,000 dollars, it would be worth the expense I believe.

Thank you so much for all your help.



Hi Tom,

I don't know of any attorneys to recommend to you, and you might want to wait on hiring one until you receive a determination on your mother's reconsideration request. Depending on the backlog involved, it can often take Social Security a substantial amount of time to make a reconsideration ruling. And, an attorney would likely receive at least 25% of your mother's back pay plus expenses if her appeal is approved. You could still hire an attorney to represent your mother at the next level of appeal (i.e. Hearing) if her reconsideration request is denied.

You may want to call or visit your Social Security office just to make sure that your mother's reconsideration request is still pending. They may also be able to give you a timeframe in which to expect a decision.

Best, Jerry