Social Security Disability RC

How to file for disability, Filing for SSI
Disability Requirements, Disability Status
How long is the wait?, Disability Application
Social Security Disability list of impairments
How to Qualify for Disability, Mental Disability
Disability Lawyers FAQ, Disability Back Pay

Social Security Disability Approval and Denial Rates

I recently made a comment about approval and denial rates and am reposting this information here. This is based on information compiled and presented in the recent "Annual Statistical Report on the Social Security Disability Insurance program".

Regarding the SSD system and getting through it, it is a difficult system. The rate of denial, nationally, at the initial claim level for disabled workers in the Social Security Disability program (there are other categories such as widow/widower claims and disabled adult children) has dropped in recent years to about 23 percent. The corollary to the disability application approval rate of 23 percent is that 77 percent of claims are denied.

The rate of denial for disabled workers in the Social Security Disability program at the reconsideration appeal level (the first appeal) has dropped to about 10 percent (in prior years it was 12-14 percent). A reconsideration appeal rate of approval of 10 percent also means a denial rate of 90 percent.

However, the allowance rate for disabled workers in the Social Security Disability program at the disability hearing level was recently recorded at 76 percent. That figure dropped to 55 percent when a case involved both SSD and SSI.

Note: this information was provided by the Social Security Administration in 2012. It seems that approval rates have continued to drop very significantly since then, thus making it even more important to 1. not fail to file appeals, 2, continue to have recent medical evidence supporting a claim, 3. comply with all DDS requests for information, 4. go to all scheduled appointments, and 5. get representation at the very least by the time it is clear that the case is progressing to the disability hearing level.

The reality is that individuals who pursue their claims to the hearing level will have a good chance of winning benefits. SSA, in the opinion of many, actually counts on people to give up and drop out of the process at the earlier levels. And many do because the process is so very long.

As for attorneys and representatives, I would advise anyone who has a hearing to get a competent representative because those 2-3 years of applications and appeals that occur BEFORE the hearing takes place will be wasted if someone is not prepared for that disability hearing (which often takes just 20 minutes).

Essential Questions

What is the Social Security Disability SSI list of impairments?

Can you work while getting or applying for Disability?

How Often Does Social Security Approve Disability The First Time You Apply?

Tips for getting Social Security Disability or SSI benefits approved

What medical conditions will get you approved for disability?

What kind of Mental Problems Qualify for Disability?

Receiving a Disability Award Letter

Conditions Social Security will recognize as a disability

Previously answered questions regarding SSD and SSI

Applying for disability in your state

Most popular topics on

Social Security Disability SSI Questions

The listings, list of disabling impairments

Can a mental illness qualify you for disability?

Disability Lawyers prevent unnecessary denials

How much Social Security Disability SSI back pay?

How to apply for disability for a child or children

Filing a Social Security Disability SSI application

Filing for disability - when to file

How to apply for disability - where to apply

Qualifications for disability benefits

How to Prove you are disabled and Win your Disability Benefits

Qualifying for Disability - The Process

How to get disability for depression

Getting disability for fibromyalgia

SSI disability for children with ADHD

What is the Application Process for Social Security Disability and SSI?

Common Mistakes to avoid after being denied for Disability

Social Security Disability SSI Exam tips

More Social Security Disability SSI Questions

Social Security Disability SSI definitions

What makes you eligible for Social Security Disability or SSI?

New and featured pages on

Who can help me file for disability?

Related pages:

How Likely are You to Win Your Disability Case?
How do you Win disability Benefits
How severe must your condition be to get disability?
How Does A Disability Examiner Determine functional limitations?
Social Security Disability Tips how a claim gets worked on
Tips for Getting Disability Approved
Tips for Filing for Social Security Disability or SSI
Why does Social Security or DDS disregard my doctor's statement supporting my case?
When you file for disability do you have to see their doctors?
Social Security Disability Approval and Denial Rates
Social Security Attorneys and Disability Representatives
Disability lawyers - basic questions for Social Security help

These pages provide answers to basic questions about pursuing disability benefits

Can you get temporary Social Security Disability or SSI benefits?

Permanent Social Security Disability

What is the difference between Social Security Disability and SSI?

Who is eligible for SSI disability?

Can I Be Eligible For SSI And Social Security Disability At The Same Time?

What makes a person eligible to receive disability benefits?

Applying for Disability - How long does it take to get Social Security Disability or SSI benefits?

What happens if I file a disability application and it is denied by a disability examiner or Judge?

Filing and applying for disability in Texas

For the sake of clarity, is not the Social Security Administration, nor is it associated or affiliated with SSA. This site is a personal, private website that is published, edited, and maintained by former caseworker and former disability claims examiner, Tim Moore, who was interviewed by the New York Times on the topic of Social Security Disability and SSI benefits in an article entitled "The Disability Mess" and also by the Los Angeles Times on the subject of political attempts to weaken the Social Security Disability system.

The goal of the site is to provide information about how Social Security Disability and SSI work, the idea being that qualified information may help claimants pursue their claims and appeals, potentially avoiding time-consuming mistakes. If you find the information on this site helpful and believe it would be helpful to others, feel free to share links to its homepage or other pages on website resource pages, blogs, or social media. Copying of this material, however, is prohibited.

To learn more about the author, please visit the homepage and view the "about this site" link near the bottom of the page.