Social Security Disability Insurance in the State of New York
New York is known for many reasons: from its iconic big apple skyline to being the happening center of the world. Even with the city’s hustle and bustle lifestyle, New Yorkers have a higher life expectancy than people in most other states. However, it also ranks among the top five states for the highest number of Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) beneficiaries. If you’re disabled, unable to work, and living in the state of New York, you may be qualified to be one of these beneficiaries. Your chances of getting SSDI benefits are higher than in most other states. In the state of New York, about 38% of claims applicants receive approval in the initial application stage as compared to 32% which is the national average approval rate.
In 2014, the top two diagnostics on the SSDI beneficiary list in New York were disabilities that stem from a mental disorder (34%) and musculoskeletal system diseases (33%).
Filing a Social Security Disability Insurance Claim in New York
If you are one of the 11% of people in New York State that is disabled, you may be entitled to receive SSDI Benefits. Anyone who has paid into the Social Security system and has earned enough work credits is eligible to receive disability benefits provided they meet certain criteria set by the Social Security Administration (SSA) in their Blue Book. The SSA will also assess your ability to work and how it impacts your income. Click here to learn more about SSDI eligibility.
If you are living in New York, New Jersey, Puerto Rico, or the U.S. Virgin Islands, your SSDI application is sent to the New York Region which covers the SSA’s operations. Understanding how the entire Social Security disability benefits approval process works is very important to improving your chances of getting benefits.
In the state of New York, the Social Security Disability agency is decentralized. There are over 100 local field offices spread across the New York Region.
Starting the SSDI application process in the state of New York is the same as in any other state. You can apply online, by phone, or in person at a Social Security office near you.
Click here to know more about the SSDI application process or watch the informative video below.
Statistics show that only 38% of SSDI claims in New York are approved for benefits in the initial application process. If you are among the roughly 60% who have been denied your claim, you have the right to appeal.
There are four stages to the appeals process: the reconsideration process, court hearings, appeals council, and then the federal review. In most states, the appeal stage starts with the reconsideration process where your case is reviewed by another disability examiner. However, New York is one of ten states where the reconsideration process has been temporarily suspended.
The appeals process in New York then consists of 3 stages:
1. The Court Hearing: In New York, it may take 6 months to over a year to get a hearing date. It all depends on the number of backlogs there are in the system. The approval rate of SSDI claims in New York at the hearing level is about 53%.
2. The Appeals Council: The Appeals Council exists to determine whether the decision made by the Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) was fairly determined.
3. Federal Review: The last and final stage of appeal is the federal court. There are four federal courts in the state of New York.
Whether you’re denied an SSDI claim at the application level, the court hearing, or the appeals council stage, you have the right to question the decision, within a stipulated time period (usually 60 days within the date of denial). Statistics show claimants who choose to be represented by an attorney or legal representation stand a far better chance of benefits approval. Legal representatives are well-versed in SSDI matters and the latest amendments in the SSA’s Blue Book as well as cases similar to yours which may serve as a precedent. They can help claimants gather the additional evidence needed to bolster your case before the judge.
Filing for an SSDI claim in New York State starts with filling out the application forms and providing the SSA with meticulous, detailed information regarding your disability. Getting the paperwork right at the start can help avoid delays in getting your SSDI benefits, not to mention the extra stress and anxiety that comes with court hearings and appeals.
We can help you get the benefits you deserve. Find out whether you are eligible for SSDI benefits now! Get a free consultation by filling out the evaluation form to the right! We will connect you to an advocate who specializes in SSDI benefits within 24 hours.
Helpful Resources for those with Disabilities
Not qualified for Social Security Disability Insurance or want additional support and live in the State of New York? The New York State administration offers several other programs to also help people with different disabilities. Follow the links below to know more about these helpful programs:
• The Fit for Life program: The goal of the Fit for Life program is to encourage and engage the disabled in some form of exercise and physical activity. It promotes awareness about the benefits of exercise and tells you where you can find a fitness program near you.
• On Target: This is an online newsletter for those with disabilities. It connects people with disabilities to useful resources and provides information on nutrition, job training options, and even helpful tips on how they can prepare to counter an emergency.
• Disability Employment Initiatives: This program seeks to educate, train, and provide job opportunities to those who are disabled.
• SNAP Benefits: This state-owned program may help seniors, low-income workers, those who are disabled, and others put healthy food on the table. Benefits are given every month through an electronic benefits card which can be used at authorized retail food stores or participating Farmers’ Market.