Applied for Social Security Disability in California, haven't heard anything, should I be worried?

For anyone who's not familiar with the Social Security Disability benefits system, this is a natural and fairly common sentiment.

Some individuals might offer advice such as the following: "All disability claims in California take a long time, don't worry about it". However, that's not necessarily the best advice to follow.

True, there's not really any point to checking the status of your disability case every week (or even every month); however, you do need to check the status of your case in the following situations.

1. After you have to file for disability. Why? Because there are instances in which claimants file applications for disability, wait for several months, and then learn that the social security office never forwarded their claim to the state agency responsible for rendering medical determinations on Social Security Disability and SSI claims (this agency is known in most states as disability determination services and it is at this agency that a claimant's case will be assigned to a disability specialist, or examiner, so medical records may be evaluated and a decision can be made).

So, if you've applied for disability with social security, it may not be a bad idea to call the social security office or to call the state disability agency in your state to verify that the claim was actually sent out for processing. Over the years, I've run into many dozens of situations where a social security office dropped the ball this way---costing a claimant months of "lost time".

2. If you've gone through the motions of filing a request for a disability hearing, you should, at some point, contact the hearing office that has jurisdiction over your area. Why? For the same reason that was listed in the first example. On occasion, the social security office will FAIL to send a file to a hearing office after a claimant, or a claimant's disability attorney has sent in a "request for hearing before an administrative law judge". I have personally seen dozens of situations in which a hearing request was mailed in and a claimant called to check the status of the request many months later----only to find that the hearing office never got the request from the social security office.

What is the remedy on situations like this? There really isn't one. Typically, what you get out of the social security office when something like this happens is "Oops, Sorry". However, for the claimant, getting a disability case delayed by several months can literally mean the difference between financial solvency and disaster.

About the Author: Tim Moore is a former Social Security Disability Examiner in North Carolina, has been interviewed by the NY Times and the LA Times on the disability system, and is an Accredited Disability Representative (ADR) in North Carolina. For assistance on a disability application or Appeal in NC, click here.

Most popular topics on

Social Security Disability in North Carolina

Common Mistakes to avoid after being denied for Disability

Tips to Prepare for Filing for Social Security Disability or SSI

Advice to Win SSD and SSI Benefit Claims

Social Security Disability SSI Questions

What is the difference between Social Security Disability and SSI?

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?

Social Security Disability SSI Exam tips

More Social Security Disability SSI Questions

What makes you eligible for Social Security Disability or SSI?

Filing for disability in California

How do I Apply for Disability Benefits in California

How long should you wait before you apply for disability?

SSD and SSI applications in California

What do you do if your California disability claim is denied?

Do you file for your children when you apply for disability in California?

Should you apply for disability in California after a denial?

How long does a disability case take in California

After you file for disability in California

Filing for disability in California and your condition

Filing a disability claim in California, long filing process

The California disability process

Do I need to be disabled a year in California to get disability?

The Social Security Disability process in California

California Disability determination process

Disability approval criteria in California

California Social Security Disability decisions

Steps to Win Social Security Disability benefits in California

Questions about disability in California

How much can you make in California and still apply for disability?

California Social Security Back Pay

Can Disability benefits be garnished in California?

Disability two year medicare waiting period in California

California review of Social Security Disability claim

California Social Security Disability status

VA disability and California Social Security Disability

Can a Congressman in California help on a disability case

How do examiners make disability decisions in California?

Applying for disability benefits in California

How long does disability take in California?

How long does it take to get a decision on a disability case in California?

Why do disability claims take so long in California?

How Long Will It Take To Get My Disability Decision If I Appeal in California?

Disability claims in California with certain conditions

Applying For Disability On the Basis of Back Pain in California

Filing for Disability with Fibromyalgia in California

Social Security Disability For Mental Illness in California

Winning California disability

Will a lawyer improve the chance to win disability in California?

Getting approved for disability in California

Winning disability in California

California Disability Lawyers and Representation

Getting a disability attorney in California

Finding a new disability attorney in California

Applying for SSI in California

Filing for SSI disability in California

SSI disability denied in California

Are SSI claims in California denied more than SSDI claims?

How to apply for SSI Disability in California

Doctors, medical records, and medical exams

Doctors and applying for disability in California

Can you be turned down for disability in California if your doctor says you are disabled?

Disability hearings in California

Disability Hearings in California

California quick disability hearing

How do I win my Social Security Disability Hearing in California?

How long does it take to get a disability hearing in California?

Disability denials in California

Disability Denied in California

If a disability claim is denied in California

Appealing a Social Security Disability denial in California

If you get denied Social Security Disability in California

Why are Most Disability Cases Denied in California?

Getting approved or denied for disability in California

Disability appeals in California

How do you file a disability appeal in California?

How many disability appeals do you get in California?

If your California disability appeal is denied, can you get another appeal?

If your disability reconsideration is denied in California

Filing a reconsideration appeal in California

Why was I denied disability in California?

Qualifying for disability in California

Qualifying for disability in California

Qualify for SSD in California

Will I Qualify For Disability Benefits in California?

Disability lawyers in California

Using a Social Security Disability Attorney in California

Cost of a California disability attorney

Why do disability lawyers in California sometimes not take cases?

Hiring a Disability Lawyer in California

Social Security Disability Attorney Fees In California

How do Disability Lawyers in California get paid their fees?

Should you get a disability lawyer before you get denied in California?

Lawyer for a disability hearing in California

Why was I denied disability in California?