Individuals who have spent their entire adult lives working and supporting families can get hurt in an instant and find themselves struggling for independence. Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) is a crucial social safety net that helps protect working adults who have found themselves unable to work before they reach retirement age.
The Social Security Administration (SSA) retains money from every paycheck a person earns. After a certain amount of contributions, an individual taxpayer qualifies for Social Security retirement benefits when they get older or for SSDI if they get hurt.
If you already know that you have met that threshold and could qualify for benefits, you likely expect to use them for retirement. If you develop a debilitating medical condition or suffer a severe injury, you probably won’t have money coming in. How long does it take to get SSDI benefits?
Applying can take several weeks
Although you can potentially submit an SSDI application online, you will need to gather documentation about your condition or injury, communicate with your physician and determine the best way to fill out the paperwork. It may take several days to several weeks to go from deciding that you need SSDI benefits to submitting your application.
Certain decisions are faster than others
The SSA uses computer software to identify applicants who qualify. Some individuals may receive rapid approval because of how serious their condition is.
Others, even those with truly debilitating conditions, will need to wait several weeks for an in-person review of their paperwork. Even after that, they might face a denial. Those denied SSDI benefits who don’t receive approval through a reconsideration will have to wait for a hearing.
How long does it take to get a hearing?
The SSA in Charlotte is one of the most efficient in the country, currently averaging only a seven-month wait for those who require a hearing. It could take a year or even longer for someone to go from their initial application to the day that they first receive a benefits check.
Avoiding mistakes in your initial application and getting support during your appeal can make it easier to secure the SSDI benefits you need when you can no longer work due to medical issues.