When you’re unable to work because of a disability, you need money, and you need it now. But what happens if you have to file a claim for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits? How long does it take the Social Security Administration (SSA) to process an SSDI claim? Knowing when your money might arrive helps you handle your finances until your benefits kick in.
How to Apply
It’s best to apply as soon as you realize you are disabled.
To get things started, you can either submit your application online or by calling the SSA at 1-800-772-1213. However, calling this number does not get your application started. Instead, the SSA representative will set up an appointment for you to apply by telephone or by going to a local SSA office.
What Happens Next?
While applying online is faster, the SSA still needs to process your application by speaking with you in person. So, the next step is that you will make an appointment to meet with an SSA representative.
At your meeting, you need to bring information, including:
- Medical records;
- Workers’ compensation;
- Information about marriages, divorces, your spouse, and your minor children;
- Banking information to set up Direct Deposit; and
- Name, address, and phone number of an alternate contact.
Once the SSA begins to process an SSDI claim, you may have to wait three to five months to get a decision.
If your SSDI claim is denied, you can ask for a reconsideration. It usually takes two to four months to get a decision.
If the claim was denied again, you could ask for a hearing. After the hearing, you may not receive a decision for one to two months, but there may be another delay while the judge’s decision is put into writing.
Exceptions to the Usual Time it Takes to Process an SSDI Claim
There’s no easy answer to how long it takes to process an SSDI claim. Benefit awards may be delayed because of trouble getting medical records. Also, claims for people with certain conditions may be approved or denied in less than thirty days.
The application process can be long and frustrating, so you need someone on your side. The attorneys at The Law Offices of Martin Taller have more than 50 years’ experience. For a free consultation, call us at 714-385-8100. Though our office is located in Anaheim, we assist clients throughout Southern California.