Individuals who are unable to work due to medical conditions that hinder them often get help from the Social Security Administration (SSA) in the form of disability insurance and income, including Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Social Security Income (SSI). Millions of individuals apply each year, so it’s not uncommon for applicants to wonder about their chances of approval for SSDI and SSI.
Each state has its own jurisdiction over disability awards and the final decision regarding approval of applications is up to the Administrative Law Judge (ALJ). Here are the states with the highest and lowest approval ratings:
States With the Highest Approval Rating
Out of all the states, only a few have an approval rating above 50 percent for SSI and SSDI. The state of Hawaii stands out with the highest approval rating for Social Security disability benefits at 67 percent. However, there are a few other states that are not too far behind, including Utah at 63 percent, New Mexico at 56 percent and New Jersey at 56 percent. Topping out just above the 50-percent approval rating include the states of Maine, Nebraska, North Carolina and Connecticut. Applicants who live in these states may find the approval process easier than if they lived in other states.
States With the Lowest Approval Rating
A large portion of states, such as Maryland and Iowa, have approval ratings ranging from 40 to 50 percent. However, some states have shown to be a little more difficult than others to get approval and feature some of the lowest approval ratings in the country. One of the primary states that may prove challenging for Social Security Disability(SSD) benefits approval is the state of Alaska. Alaska has the lowest chance of approval with the Social Security Administration(SSA) approving only 17 percent of its applicants. On the other hand, the states of Kansas, Delaware and Wisconsin have approval ratings that show a nearly 20 percent-difference than that of Alaska.
Approval ratings in these three states range from 33 to 36 percent.
How Applicants Can Improve Their Potential for Approval of Social Security Disability Benefits
Applicants who plan to apply for SSD benefits do not have to be discouraged if they live in a state with low approval ratings. It’s important for applicants to remember that each state varies in its approval ratings and some states require applicants to take additional steps for approval of SSDI and SSI benefits. However, there are several steps applicants can take to improve their chances of approval for SSDI and SSI. A critical step applicants can take is ensuring they have proof of any physical or mental disabilities that qualify for their SSD benefits.
Applicants should also have records of prescribed treatments and any pharmaceuticals taken. Statements from physicians verifying an applicant’s inability to perform work activities due to the mental or physical health condition are also important for improving the approval of an application. New applicants often leave out these materials or send in proof that is outdated. Also, applicants who are not approved initially may not realize they can appeal a decision to deny the application. Applicants can also contact a professional law firm that specializes in Social Security disability cases to help review these cases, such as The Good Law Group.
Getting SSDI and SSI benefits may appear challenging for applicants when considering the approval rates. However, most applicants miss the mark by sending incomplete information or avoiding the appeals process. But by seeking professional help and carefully reviewing their applications, applicants can improve their chances of approval for Social Security Disability.