SSDRC authored by Tim Moore
Will I Qualify For Disability Benefits in North Carolina?
Applying for Disability in North Carolina
How far back do you get disability benefits in North Carolina?
Can You Work and Collect Social Security Disability in North Carolina?
How long does it take for the disability decision in North Carolina?
Social Security Disability SSI and Fibromyalgia
How to Get the Status on Your Social Security Disability Claim in North Carolina
Do you have to go to a Social Security hearing in North Carolina to get approved for disability?
Getting a Social Security disability award in North Carolina
Getting approved for mental disability benefits in North Carolina
Social Security Disability SSI and Degenerative Disc Disease
What are the disability qualifications in North Carolina?
Proving the requirements for disability in North Carolina
Improving your chances of getting disability in North Carolina
Disability determination services in North Carolina
Winning disability benefits in North Carolina
How long does it take to receive North Carolina disability benefits after you are approved?
How to prove you are disabled
and win disability benefits
If you file for disability in North Carolina and get approved at the initial claim, or disability application, level, or get approved at the reconsideration appeal level (the reconsideration is the first appeal), you can probably expect to be put into pay status within just a few short weeks of the decision having been made by a disability examiner at NC DDS (North Carolina disability determination services).
After the case has been approved by the disability examiner, the case will be sent back to the Social Security office.
Usually, the Social Security office CR, or claims representative, will inform the claimant who has been approved for SSD (Social Security disability) that they can expect to receive their disability back pay within 30 days, and their regular ongoing monthly disability benefits will begin the month after that.
If the individual has been approved for SSI, as opposed to SSD, the same timetable for how long it takes to receive back pay and continuing monthly benefits may apply.
However, this will be affected by what is called the "end of line" interview. Since SSI also takes into consideration whatever assets a person may have, they will need to be questioned again at this interview about their assets (money in bank accounts, real property, etc.) before benefits may be released.
Obviously, the sooner a person who is approved for SSI gets to the Social Security office for this interview, the sooner they may receive their backpay and regular monthly benefits.
The relatively fast turnaround at these first two levels of the system is because if the disability examiner renders a decision (examiners make decisions at the first two levels) then the case gets immediately forwarded back to the Social Security office where it started.
If, however, your case goes to the level of an ALJ hearing, or administrative law judge disability hearing, then it may take a good bit longer to begin receiving disability benefits even if your case is awarded by the judge.
The reason for this is that even if the judge indicates to you at the hearing that your case will be paid, I.e. awarded benefits, that does not necessarily mean that you will receive an official notice of approval. Decisions made by judges are not entirely official until they are written up by decision writers at the hearing office, or ODAR, which stands for office of adjudication and review.
The problem here is that just as there is a backlog for cases waiting to be scheduled for hearings to take place, there is also a backlog for cases to be written up by decision writers.
It is not unusual, in fact, for claimants to wait several weeks, perhaps even several months, after they have been awarded benefits by an ALJ , to begin receiving their monthly benefits.
If you have been told that you have been approved to receive benefits, or you have received a notification of approval in the mail, and there seems to be an inordinate delay in receiving your benefits, then you may wish to have your disability representative contact the payment processing center to see if there is any hold up in the processing of your benefits.
It has been my experience, in the past, that contacting a payment center module can sometimes have the effect of clearing a jam in the pipeline.
Return to: SSDRC, or the Social Security Disability Questions page
Individual Questions and Answers
Social Security Disability and SSI in North Carolina
The Social Security Administration administers two disability programs in North Carolina. They are Social Security disability and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) disability.
If you are a resident of North Carolina, you may contact your local Social Security office for a telephone or an in-person disability interview. There are local Social Security offices in the following cities: Ahoskie, Albemarle, Asheboro, Asheville, Charlotte, Concord, Durham, Elizabeth City, Fayetteville, Franklin, Gastonia, Goldsboro, Greensboro, Greenville, Henderson, Hendersonville Hickory, Kinston, Lumberton, Mt. Airy, New Bern, Raleigh, Reidsville, Roanoke Rapids, Rockingham, Rocky Mount, Salisbury, Sanford, Shelby, Smithfield, Statesville, Washington, Whiteville, Wilkesboro, Wilmington, Wilson, and Winston-Salem.
For a listing of contact numbers and addresses, click here: Social Security offices in North Carolina.
Unlike many other states, North Carolina has a centralized system for disability determinations, which means there is one location for the state disability agency which renders initial claim decisions for SSA. This agency is known as DDS, or Disability Determination Services and is located in Raleigh. At some point after filing your claim, you may be contacted by a disability examiner at DDS, or you may wish to provide updated information to your examiner.
For DDS contact information, click here: North Carolina Disability Determination Services.
Social Security disability hearings are held at the Office of Disability Adjudication and Review or simply ODAR. North Carolina has ODAR offices in the following cities: Fayetteville, Charlotte, Greensboro, and Raleigh. Your residential address will determine which office your hearing will be held at.
The current time in months it takes for a hearing to be held after being requested:
Charlotte NC hearing office 16.5
Fayetteville NC hearing office 14.0
Greensboro NC hearing office 16.0
Raleigh NC hearing office 13.0
Average number of days for a case to be completed at a North Carolina hearing office:
Greensboro NC hearing office 486
Fayetteville NC hearing office 454
Charlotte NC hearing office 441
Raleigh NC hearing office 406
For a listing of Hearing office addresses and contact information, click here: North Carolina Social Security Hearing offices.