How Long Does It Take to Get Social Security Disability Once Approved?

How Long Does It Take to Get Social Security Disability Once Approved?

If you are asking how long it takes to get your Social Security Disability (SSD) payment once your claim is approved, then congratulations! You’ve probably succeeded in winning the benefits you earned through years of hard work. And unless you were very lucky, it was a many months-long process to get this far.

Now what? When will your SSD benefit payments begin to arrive?

Waiting Time Between “Approval” and “Notice of Approval Decision”

Different SSD benefit claimants experience different waiting times because of variables in each case. Some lucky few receive word of approval at the initial stage. Most applicants, however, learn their SSD claim was denied during the initial assessment, and again upon reconsideration. Then appealing those decisions will put you on track for an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) case hearing which could be delayed for many months.

If the ALJ who heard your case decided to approve your claim for benefits, and even if they informed you during the hearing that they would approve the claim, you will still have to wait before you get notified formally. The ALJ dictates the decision but does not write it. It is sent to another department where the decision is transcribed by a writer and then sent back for approval by the judge. If the judge finds errors or wants to change phrasing, the decision will be returned to be rewritten.

How long can this paperwork back-and-forth take? It may be as few as 30 days or as many as 75 days between your hearing date and the day you receive your Approval Decision. For some, the wait may stretch to 90 days. This time difference depends largely on how heavy the workload is at your regional Social Security Administration hearing operations office.

You must also keep in mind that approval of benefit maybe a total approval or partial or modified approval. A partial approval means that the ALJ did approve your benefits, but they did not agree with the date you claimed your disability began, called the Alleged Onset Date (AOD). If they established your disability date (EOD) later than the date you claimed your disability began, the later disability onset date will reduce any backpay you may receive. If you disagree with the EOD, you should speak with your disability attorney to consider filing an appeal.

You will continue to receive benefit payments during your appeal of a later EOD. However, the appeal will open the case up again for a full review which may also end with your partial award of benefits being reversed.

Waiting Time Between Notice of Approval and First Benefit Payment

Once your formal notice of approval is sent to you, your claim file goes to another division in the Office of Hearings Operations (OHO) for calculation of your benefit amount. Again, the workload and backlog of cases existing at your regional OHO affect the speed with which paperwork is completed.

There are 21 different OHO offices in Texas, with San Antonio closest to Corpus Christi.

Your Notice of Approval should advise you of your benefit amount and the date you may expect your payments to begin. Many claimants receive their payment near the time they are told it will arrive. On average, your first payment should arrive within 30 to 45 days after you receive notice your claims was approved.

Some people even see a payment was deposited in their account before they received their approval notice!

There is no reliable rule that can be applied to all cases. While some people receive the payment quickly, others’ personal circumstances may delay the payment. For example, if an SSD benefits claim is approved for someone already receiving Supplemental Security Income (SSI), benefit and eligibility calculations may need to be refigured, slowing the process. Or, if an SSD claimant worked while they were waiting for SSD approval, their case may need a renewed income eligibility review.

Waiting Period for Back-Benefits-Pay

Keep in mind that there is a 5-month waiting period between the date the Social Security Administration decided your disability began and the time your first payment is earned. If your disability onset date is established to be 4 months before you filed your SSD claim and 13 months before your claim was approved, they you will be entitled to 12 months of back benefit payments. (4+13=17; 17-6=12)

The back benefits payment is often separate from your first monthly benefit payment, but they should arrive within a week or several weeks from one another.

Corpus Christi’s Experienced Disability Lawyer – Atty. Kathleen Day Is Ready to Help

At the Kathleen Day Disability Law Office, nothing matters more than winning the highest disability benefits our Corpus Christi neighbors deserve. Our entire team is born and raised locally, and the community we serve is the same one our families and friends live in.

We only practice disability law. All we do, every day, all day, is a fight for the Social Security Disability benefits and SSI benefits of our clients. We will do all the leg work, collect all your documents, analyze all your medical records, and put together the strongest, most complete SSD or SSI application for benefits that your life circumstances deserve.