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How does the SSA make a disability determination?

On Behalf of | Jan 4, 2020 | Social Security Disability

Social Security Disability benefits are notorious for being difficult to get. The Social Security Administration is very strict about approving applications. The strictest part of the process is determining if you have an eligible disability. The Social Security Administration explains the determination process starts when you turn in your application online, over the phone or by mail to a field office in Massachusetts.

You must ensure that your application contains all the information the SSA requests. This includes proper documentation to support your disability claim. The field office will go over your application to make sure you included everything. It will also start the process of verifying your basic information, such as your Social Security number and other non-medical information.

Your application then will go to Disability Determination Services, which is the state agency. The DDS will look at your disability information. This office must verify the documentation and information you provided. It may send you requests for more information and may require you to complete additional examinations. Once the DDS makes a determination, it returns your application with an approval or denial to the field office.

The field office will then contact you. If the DDS approved your application, the field office will arrange your benefit payments and set the number of benefits. If you get a denial, then the field office will notify you and keep your file in case you want to appeal. You will need to take additional steps to appeal the decision and will receive information on how to do this from the SSA.