The Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) programs provide assistance to people with disabilities.
The SSDI programs provide benefits to individuals and certain members of their families if they have been “insured.” This means they have been employed long enough – and have paid Social Security taxes on their wages. The Supplemental Security Income (SSI) program pays benefits to adults and children with disabilities who have limited income and resources.
Social Security Disability Application Process
You gather the information and documents you need to apply. We recommend you print and review the Adult Disability Checklist. It will help you gather the information you need to complete the application.
You complete and submit your application.
- The SSA will review your application to make sure you meet some basic requirements for disability benefits.
- The SSA will check whether you worked enough years to qualify.
- The SSA will evaluate any current work activities.
- The SSA will process your application and forward your case to the Disability Determination Services office in your state.
- The State agency makes the disability determination decision.
Once You’ve Applied for SSDI or SSI
Once we receive your application, we’ll review it and contact you if we have questions. We might request additional documents from you before we can proceed
Look For a Response
You’ll receive a letter in the mail with our decision. If you included information about other family members when you applied, we’ll let you know if they may be able to receive benefits on your record.
Check The Status of Your Application
You can check the status of your application online using your personal Social Security account. If you are unable to check your status online, you can call us 1-800-772-1213 (TTY 1-800-325-0778) from 8:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m., Monday through Friday.
Appeal Declined Application Decision
If you disagree with any of our decisions about your entitlement to benefits, you have the right to appeal. Our decision must be appealed in writing within 60 days of receipt. There are four levels of appeal:
- A hearing before an administrative law judge.
- A review by Social Security’s Appeals Council.
- A review by the federal courts.