Social Security Disability Definitions
Social Security Disability and SSI Overview
The Requirements for Disability
Social Security Disability and SSI Applications
Tips and Advice for Disability Claims
How long does Disability take?
Common Mistakes after Receiving a Disability Denial
Disability Denials and Filing Appeals
Social Security Mental Disability Benefits
Disability Benefits offered through Social Security
Benefits through SSI disability
Disability Benefits for Children
Disability Qualifications and How to Qualify
Social Security Disability and Working
Winning your Disability Benefits
Social Security Back Pay and the disability award notice
Disability Lawyers and Hiring an Attorney
Social Security Disability SSI List of Conditions
What is considered a Disabling condition by Social Security?
Social Security Disability SSI and Medical Evidence
Filing for Disability Benefits
Eligibility for Disability Benefits
SSDRC authored by Tim Moore
Ask a question, get an answer
Has my Disability Claim Been Approved?
How to prove you are disabled
and win disability benefits
This question comes up now and then. And it is a valid one since there are many instances in which the social security administration will send out a notice of disapproved claim (a denial notice) which a claimant will never receive. And when that happens there is every danger of not being able to file a disability appeal in a timely manne because how can a person appeal when they don't even know they've been denied?
It stands to reason that there are times when a claimant has been notified of an approval for a disability claim but have not received the notice.
On initial claims (an initial claim is a disability application) and on reconsiderations, where the decision has been made by a disability examiner, a claimant will receive formal notification from the social security administration. On a case that has been approved by a judge at a disability hearing, a claimant will receive a separate notice of decision, followed by a notice of award.
Fortunately, as opposed to a situation involving a denial of a claim, if your case is approved but you did not receive notification, you will eventually learn of the approval when a check from the social security administration (for back pay or a monthly benefit) has been deposited in the bank account you designated.
Additionally, if you were represented by a disability attorney, the attorney will usually contact you as soon as they receive a copy of the notification of approval.
If your case has been pending for quite some time and you have not heard anything, you should contact your disability representative, assuming you have one, and ask them to do a followup for a status update on your case.
For cases that are being decided at the first two levels, this means that your representative will likely make a call to the disability determination services agency in your state.
If the case is pending at the hearing level (meaning that it is waiting to be scheduled for a social security disability hearing, or a hearing has been held and you are waiting on a decision from the ALJ, or administrative law judge), then your representative's office will contact the hearing office.
If you are not represented by a disability lawyer, you can make these same calls yourself to ascertain the status of your case. The number for DDS and the number for the hearing office can be obtained from the social security office where you filed your claim.
Return to: Social Security Disability Resource Center, or read answers to Questions
Information on the following topics can be found here: Social Security Disability Questions
Social Security Disability SSI decisions | The Disability Decision Process and What gets taken into Consideration | Getting Denied for Disability Benefits | Questions about Social Security Disability Approvals and Being Approved | Social Security Disability Hearings | Social Security Medical Examinations | Social Security SSI Doctors | Social Security Disability Representation | Social Security Disability SSI Reviews