Applying for social security disability benefits can seem like a game of “hurry up and wait.” You gather every medical record that supports the disability diagnosis and its impact on your ability to work, compile information on your employment and salary history, meet with a disability examiner for an interview and submit an application – and then nothing.
It can take several months to several years for a decision on your SSD application, depending on what level of the process a decision is made. If it is approved during the initial application or reconsideration phases, you may be notified of the decision as early as three months from the date you submitted the application. If you have to appeal your case, it could be a year or more until a decision is made.
But once the SSA (or administrative law judge, appeals council, or federal judge, if your case is decided upon appeal) determines that you are eligible for SSD benefits, it will notify you of its decision via a disability award letter. (If your case is decided upon appeal, you will first receive a letter from the appellate level of its decision, followed by the award letter).
The disability award letter will be sent via the mail, and will contain the following information:
- The date that your disability was established, or the alleged disability onset date. This date it is important because it will help determine how much, if any, SSD backpay you are eligible to receive;
- When the first disability payment will be made;
- Your monthly benefit amount, and;
- When you can expect your case to be subject to a continuing disability review.
Confused about navigating the many documents of the SSD application process? Consider the Good Law Group for your representation. Call #866-352-5238 or complete the online evaluation form.