Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits provide a crucial social safety net for working adults who suffer a catastrophic medical issue. Most workers only make a claim against their Social Security payroll contributions after they retire, but some will need help before then, which is when SSDI helps.
Unfortunately, applying for SSDI benefits has a reputation for being a very difficult process. Not only is the paperwork itself demanding, but the chances of getting approved at first are not very high. There are even some people who will claim that no one gets approved when they first apply for SSDI benefits.
Some people insist that every applicant has to appeal if they ever expect to receive SSDI when they have a disabling medical condition but are not yet old enough to qualify for retirement benefits. Is it true that no one gets approved when they first apply?
Approval rates are low, but people do get benefits
Many people who apply for benefits won’t receive them, but roughly one in five applicants do qualify when they first apply. According to the information provided directly by the Social Security Administration (SSA), the final approval rate between 2010 and 2019 was 31%, which is down from almost 45% in the previous decade. Roughly 21% of applicants received approval after their initial application, while another 10% manage to obtain benefits from appeals.
The 10% chance of getting benefits upon appeal makes following up an initial denial with a reconsideration and a hearing a smart choice. Roughly 2% of those who receive SSDI obtained approval through reconsideration, while another 8% of applicants got their benefits after a hearing. You can receive backdated benefits after your approval, which can help you if you have had to wait months to finally receive your benefits.
The right support increases your odds of approval
Small mistakes when gathering documentation or filing paperwork can lead to a denial. An applicant without a secondary source of support may also let the frustration or disappointment of rejection interfere with their push for benefits.
Even if it may take months to complete the process, applying for SSDI benefits can help you support yourself until you are old enough to qualify for retirement benefits instead. Talk to a Social Security attorney about how the process works.