Patricia was found disabled as the result of her severe chronic iritis (also called uveitis or iridocyclitis), macular edema, and glaucoma in both eyes; obesity; asthma; and anxiety disorder.
Patricia’s mother had initially filed a claim for SSI and Child Disability (DAC – Disabled Adult Child) disability on Patricia’s behalf on May 13, 2010. Those claims were denied after a hearing before an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ), March 13, 2012. Patricia’s mother appealed the decision to the Appeals Council (AC). The AC accepted review and remanded the case back to the Office of Adjudication and Review for further development, explaining that the prior ALJ had failed to adjudicated the childhood disability benefits claim, erroneously dismissing the claim. Patricia was represented by John J. Chihak.
The medical evidence Chihak & Associates obtained supported Patricia’s allegations of debilitating limitations secondary to her impairments relating to her vision, primarily. Patricia’s providers included Sound Family Medicine; Cascade Eye and Skin Center; Road Clinic; and Good Samaritan in Puyallup.
John met with Patricia and her mother to go over her complete medical file and prepare Patricia for what she would experience at her hearing, which was scheduled to be held in Tacoma, Washington on March 17, 2014. Several days prior to the hearing, Mr. Chihak received a call from the Administrative Law Judge, who said that based on the updated medical evidence, Patricia would not have to come and testify at her scheduled hearing.
The Administrative Law Judge reviewed Patricia’s file prior to the hearing and determined that the evidence of record fully supported Patricia’s claims of disability. The record showed a long history of eye problems with very low visual acuity as of the alleged onset date. The Administrative Law Judge found that the medical evidence obtained by Chihak & Associates was sufficient. Accordingly, Patricia’s disability claim was approved.