The Social Security Administration (SSA) is somewhat notorious for taking a long time to process claims by those seeking Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits. People can wait a year or longer for a hearing, which can mean going months without benefits while also not working and incurring medical costs due to the disabling condition.
In some cases, those with serious, terminal or progressive conditions may need benefits immediately and not have the ability to wait months for the approval of an application or a hearing. Their ability to work has ended, and they continue to accrue expenses and costs without any ability to support themselves. Waiting for a hearing could constitute a grave financial hardship.
For a fraction of SSDI applicants, fast-track application processing may be an option. Familiarizing yourself with how the SSA fast-tracks certain SSDI applications can help you better determine if you might qualify for quicker payments.
Quick Disability Determinations come from computer analysis
When you submit your application for SSDI benefits, it goes through multiple processes of review and screening. The earliest stage involves computer programs that highlight applications that are most likely to receive approval. Using a predictive model, the SSA attempts to locate applications that qualify for Quick Disability Determination (QDD).
Provided that the program screening applications thinks you are likely to qualify and that the application has adequate medical documentation to support the claim, you may receive a QDD. That could mean an approval of an application for benefits in days, rather than many months.
Those with severe conditions may qualify for Compassionate Allowances
Applicants with the most pressing medical conditions may qualify for Compassionate Allowances (CAL). The point of these benefits is to help those with severe and worsening conditions. CAL may be available to help those with specific diseases and other conditions. There is a list of specific conditions, ranging from aggressive cancers to degenerative conditions like ALS, that potentially qualify an application for CAL.
Even if you don’t receive a QDD or qualify for CAL, you still have the right to pursue benefits if your medical condition prevents you from working or caring for yourself.