I just talked to a lawyer here in Monmouth County, NJ who deals in part with disabilty cases and their aftermath. I’m part of the aftermath, focused on post-divorce situations.
I pay half my monthly Social Security payment via court order to my ex-wife as part of a settlement to keep me from going back to the county jail. I was there for 13 hours in April 2007, and it was not the high point of my life. Green is not my preferred color for jumpsuits. So I come out of each month with about $650 a month to pay my rent, eat on, and clothe myself. Oh yes: let’s not forget running my car at $4.00 a gallon for gas and having enough money to feed my cat. No, I’m not having fun yet.
The issue is Disability. I gather the US Congress imposed a limit of 66 years of age for filing Disability claims. Let’s establish that my diabetes let to neuropathy, and that I can’t walk very well without a lot of pain in my legs and feet. I don’t know what other toll is being exacted, but it can’t be good. I sense I’m in mental decline. I have bipolar disorder, and being bled every month is not helping ameliorate the situation. I don’t even feel better after the bad blood and humours are drained out. Ha. Ha.
Who made this rule that 66 is the cut-off point for re-opening a Disability claim? Why won’t anyone fight it? I went into a mental health unit in my local hospital at the beginning of 2007 because I felt suicidal. That passed, and I was advised by the hospital to go apply for Disability. They didn’t tell me the claim would most likely be turned down and to reapply at once because I’d probably get it. I went to see a psychiatrist who did work for the State of New Jersey, he said I had a good claim, but when the result came down, it was against me. Nobody told me to reapply at once. By the time I thought of it, my legs and feet were shot. I felt like a Civil War veteran without the medals.
Who made this Age 66 rule? Who said alimony had to be lifetime even if my ex-wife can work and does? Yes, I know it’s unfair. But I can’t any way around it.
I’m currently involved with a group called New Jersey Alimony Reform (NJAR) but nothing happens there, either…except interviews (I gave one) that are set aside because the group’s lawyers have decided the comments are inappropriate and perhaps even libelous. Libelous against whom? The judge–married to the Lieutenant Governor–who locked me up? Against the legal profession in Jersey? Against what?
What about me and about the numerous debtor ex husbands and wives who are trapped in the caprices of a legal system that runs on the will of a judge in the courtroom, not on principles of law that claim to be equitable.
This is not equity. It’s financial rape, and until we can get a fair hearing and airing of the facts of our cases, the punishments will continue.