What is the Application Process for Social Security Disability and SSI?
How do you Win Benefits under Social Security Disability or SSI?
If I am determined disabled, how far back will Social Security pay benefits?
How do you prove your disability case if you have a mental condition?
What Can I Do to Improve My Chances of Winning Disability Benefits
Common Mistakes after Receiving a Denial of Social Security Disability or SSI Benefits
How to File for Disability - Tips for Filing
If You Get Approved For SSDI Will You Also Get Medicare?
How much does a Social Security disability attorney get paid?
Social Security Disability SSI Criteria and the Evaluation Process
How long does it take to be approved for SSI or Social Security disability?
What do you Need to Prove to Qualify for Disability Benefits?
Social Security Disability SSI and Fibromyalgia
Social Security Disability SSI and Degenerative Disc Disease
Can I Qualify For Disability and Receive Benefits based on Depression?
Answers to questions about SSD and SSI disability
What Disabilities Qualify for SSI and Social Security Disability Benefits?
Social Security Disability Status
Social Security Disability Tips — how a claim gets worked on
Social Security Disability, SSI Disability - Terms, Definitions, Concepts
How do I check the status of my Social Security disability claim ?
How to prove you are disabled
and win disability benefits
Once you complete your disability claim with Social Security, it is sent to a state disability-processing agency for a medical determination. It is assigned to a disability examiner who begins the process of gathering medical records from all the sources you listed in your disability application.
This can take some time to do, so you should probably wait about thirty days or so before contacting Social Security about the status of your disability claim. Medical records must be collected from various doctors and it takes some doctors longer than others to send their records to SSA.
Since a disability examiner cannot really make a determination on a disability claim until they receive your medical records it is not a bad idea to check in about a month after you file your disability claim to make sure that SSA has everything they need. They may need you to contact your doctor to help expedite getting your medical records to SSA, or they may just need more information from you in order to make a decision on your case.
To get a status on your disability claim you may call your local Social Security office or the toll free number for Social Security. However, it is probably more beneficial to you to contact the state disability agency working on your disability claim. By contacting DDS (you may obtain the number for this agency by contacting the social security office where you filed your claim), you may speak directly to the disability examiner who is responsible for your disability determination.
A state disability examiner may not inform you of any decision regarding your claim (assuming a decision has been made by the time you call). However, the examiner may be able to update you on the processing status of your case (for instance, if medical records are still waiting to be received from one of your doctors or hospitals).
You must speak with Social Security to get any information about your disability decision. Often disability claims are sent from the state disability processing agency to a quality review office for a quality review. They have the power to change the decision, which is why the decision is not given out until your disability claim file is back in the jurisdiction of your local Social Security office.
Return to: SSDRC, or the Questions, Answers, Tips, and Advice page
Individual Questions and Answers
SSD and SSI are Federal Programs
The title II Social Security Disability and title 16 SSI Disability programs operate under federal guidelines and, therefore, the program requirements--medical and non-medical--apply to all states:
Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Indiana, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming
Recent approval and denial statistics for various states can be viewed here:
Social Security Disability, SSI Approval and Denial Statistics by state
Special Section: Disability Lawyers and unnecessary claim denials