Disability denial in Texas what are my chances?The Social Security Administration (SSA) receives millions of applications for Social Security Disability Insurance and Supplemental Security Income benefits each year. Thousands of those applications are submitted by disabled workers in Texas. If you file for disability in the state of Texas you have a forty-percent chance of receiving SSDI or SSI benefits, assuming the approval rates match historical rates.
Recently on our disability hearing a claimant asked, I have submitted my Texas SSDI application and I was denied. What are my chances of receiving benefits after a disability denial and how long will I have to wait?
Disability denial and the long wait for benefits in Texas
As mentioned above, Texas claimants who submit an application for SSDI benefits are generally denied the first time they apply. Claimants will have 60 days from the date of their disability denial to file for a reconsideration. If the reconsideration is denied, which it most likely will be, claimants will have to appeal and request a hearing.
If you have requested a disability hearing after a disability denial it can take 253 to 454 days to obtain a hearing before an administrative law judge. After the judge hears your case you may have to wait up to 90 days to receive your check. If you are denied benefits after the hearing, you can file a case with the Appeals Council, but because the Council refuses to hear or denies most of the cases they do hear most legal experts suggest it could be better simply to start the entire process again.
Who will make the disability denial determination in Texas?
Whether or not your case will be approved or denied will depend on the evidence you present to the Office of Disability Adjudication and Review (ODAR). The ODAR is only sent your SSDI application after the local SSA office ensures you meet the nonmedical requirements for SSDI benefits.
To win SSDI benefits and avoid a disability denial, you will have to prove that your condition is severe, you cannot work at least 12 continuous months, and your condition either meets or exceeds a listing on the SSA Listing of Impairments or you are unable to work your current job or retrain for new work.
But who makes the decision? Disability examiners located in ODAR offices across the United States will evaluate all the medical evidence for your case. It is important to understand, however, that not all Texas cases are examined by an ODAR office located in your state. Some areas of Texas are handled by ODAR offices in other areas of the country. For example, New Mexico ODAR offices receive SSDI claims for Texas residents who live in the El Paso area.
Other ODAR offices, however, handle the majority of cases in Texas and are located in Dallas, North Dallas, Fort Worth, Houston, Downtown Houston, Harlingen, and San Antonio.
Each of these ODAR offices have various processing times depending on the number of claims they receive, their staffing constraints, and the length of time it takes for them to get medical records from your treating sources.
It is likely you will receive a disability denial the first time you apply for SSDI benefits. If you are approved immediately you could receive benefits within 90 days. If you are denied and have to appeal your disability denial multiple times, it could take up to two years.