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
Receiving a Social Security Disability Award Letter
How to prove you are disabled
and win disability benefits
How does Social Security notify individuals that their claim has been approved for Social Security disability? Social Security notifies all individuals who apply for disability benefits by mail. If your disability claim has been approved, you will receive an award letter and if your claim has been denied you will receive a denial letter.
What does kind of information is included in a Social Security award letter? A Social Security award letter will include the following information:
How long does it take to receive an award letter?
Just how long does it takes to receive a Social Security disability or SSI award letter, depends upon the level at which your disability claim is approved. For instance, if you receive an approval for SSD or SSI at the initial claim (meaning the disability application level) or reconsideration appeal level, you may receive your disability award letter within three months.
However, if you do not receive your disability approval until the disability hearing level, you will first receive a letter from the hearing office stating you have been approved. This letter is a Notice of Decision. However, your actual award letter or Notice of Award, that spells out how much money you will receive--and when--may take another six weeks or so to arrive.
Why does the social security disability award letter take so long to arrive when a case is at the hearing level? This is because the hearings offices send all of their allowances to regional payment centers to be processed. These payment processing centers have huge volumes of cases to process and are understaffed. This, of course, means that the time required for receiving an award letter will be longer.
But in some instances, the system is fairly unpredictable. For example, it happens fairly regularly that a claimant who has been approved may even receive their first Social Security benefits before they have received their official Social Security award letter.
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