Every year the Social Security Administration provides cash benefits to millions of people in the disability program. In December 2019, payments totaled around $11.7 billion.
You must apply with the SSA to receive Social Security Disability Insurance. The process may seem stressful, but the outcome will help you maintain an income while keeping you on health insurance. Having all the information needed for the application may expedite the time it takes for approval.
What should you have on hand?
As someone who has a chronic debilitating condition, you may have experience with doctors, tests and prescriptions. If you have not kept your information up to date, now is the time to rectify the situation before you apply.
- Have a list of doctors, clinics, hospitals and therapists
- Keep a record of all medications
- List any medical tests you had or will have
Make a file to organize all your information to include test results and doctors’ letters.
How long will it take?
The decision process may take from three to five months. However, if you have a severe disabling condition, your wait time may be shorter. The SSA has two fast-track options, Quick Disability Determinations and Compassionate Allowances.
The QDD process uses a computer-based predictive model to identify a disability determination that is highly likely and has readily available medical evidence. The CAL process quickly pinpoints diseases and other medical conditions that meet SSA standards for benefits.
The Social Security Administration provides a starter kit with a checklist and a worksheet. After applying, keep track of the status. The SSA may request more details.