If you’re no longer able to work due to a disability, Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) can be a lifeline – but it’s notoriously hard to get a claim approved.
In fact, it’s not uncommon to hear that “every claim gets denied the first time around,” except that’s not entirely true.
The odds of an approved claim can vary by location
Where you live can influence the odds that your claim will be approved. The state with the highest number of initial application approvals, at 65%, is actually Alaska – but initial applications in the District of Columbia are only approved about 30% of the time. Minnesota, in comparison, falls somewhere in the middle with a 45% approval rating.
Since a denial means going through a lengthy appeals process, you want to do everything you can to make sure that your initial application is approved. That means you should:
- Seek regular medical treatment for your condition. This not only keeps your medical records current and provides evidence for your claim, but it also shows that you are doing your utmost to get better.
- Complete the application for benefits carefully. Make sure that you provide the Social Security Administration (SSA) with the contact information for all your relevant medical providers and any medical records you have on hand.
- Stay in touch. SSA may contact you for more information, more medical release forms or to set up a consultative exam. If you don’t respond in a timely manner to them, they will make your decision without the additional information – and that’s not likely to be in your favor.
You may also be able to improve your odds of success on your initial claim by seeking legal guidance early in the process. Attorneys who practice in this area of law understand what it takes to get an approval.