Social Security Changes To Fast-Track More Claims For Disability Benefits

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Allsup explains benefits, considerations with 12 new conditions added to Compassionate Allowances program

Allsup’s expert representatives can help people with disabilities and their families determine if their disability, along with other factors, will help them receive their benefits more quickly.

With more than 3 million people expected to file for Social Security disability benefits this year, it’s important to understand the options available to individuals to fast-track their Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) claims, according to Allsup, which has helped tens of thousands of people receive their SSDI benefits. This is especially true with the Social Security Administration’s announcement that 12 conditions have been added to the Compassionate Allowances program, which helps fast-track certain disability claims.

“A small, but significant number of claims can benefit from the fast-track programs,” said Mike Stein, Allsup’s assistant vice president of claims. This year, the SSA expects 150,000 claims to be fast-tracked through the Compassionate Allowances (CAL) program and the Quick Disability Determination (QDD) process, according to a recent announcement.

“Allsup’s expert representatives can help people with disabilities and their families determine if their disability, along with other factors, will help them receive their benefits more quickly,” Stein said. He pointed out that although many people will not be eligible for the fast-track programs, they can still benefit from Allsup’s emphasis on helping people with disabilities receive their benefits as quickly as possible.

“Each month, Allsup helps thousands of applicants complete the proper documentation and gather the necessary medical and work history to file an initial SSDI claim,” Stein added. “We avoid mistakes that might lead them into the disability appeal process, which can add many months to their wait for a decision. More than half of Allsup customers receive their benefits at the initial application level and avoid the need for additional appeals or a disability hearing.”

Filing for SSDI benefits can be a daunting task because of the significant amount of information required and the SSA’s strict criteria for evaluating claims. SSDI is a federally mandated insurance program that taxpayers and their employers fund through payroll taxes. Social Security disability benefits provide monthly income to those who have experienced a severe disability and can no longer work for 12 months or longer, or who have a terminal condition.

More About SSA’s Fast-Track Efforts
Both SSA programs are focused on expediting review of Social Security disability claims to reach faster decisions. The QDD process is based on a computer model that allows SSA to screen cases with a high potential for approval. The CAL program was created to quickly identify diseases and other medical conditions that clearly meet SSDI and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) requirements. The 12 conditions just added to the Compassionate Allowances program primarily cover heart-related impairments:
1.    Aortic atresia
2.    Eisenmenger syndrome
3.    Endomyocardial fibrosis
4.    Heart transplant graft failure
5.    Heart transplant wait list - 1A/1B
6.    Hypoplastic left heart syndrome
7.    Left ventricular assist device (LVAD) recipient
8.    Mitral valve atresia
9.    Primary cardiac amyloidosis
10.    Pulmonary atresia
11.    Single ventricle
12.    Tricuspid atresia

Initially, 50 conditions were covered under Compassionate Allowances, then another 38 were added on March 1, 2010. The 12 conditions added this month brings the total to 100. Find more information about Compassionate Allowances on

Who Qualifies for Expedited Disability Programs?

  •     About one in every 25 applicants receives expedited processing, according to the SSA.
  •     The SSA identified 4.6 percent of initial disability claims filed as either QDD or CAL in fiscal year 2010. By the end of 2012, SSA expects this amount to increase to between 6 and 9 percent.1
  •     The processing time for these cases typically averages less than two weeks.

Additional Help for Faster Disability Benefits
The SSA also revised its guidelines for the Compassionate Allowances program to permit examiners to make decisions without fully developing the applicant’s work history. Beginning next month, SSA reported, it is eliminating this part of the application process for those who have a condition on the list.

Even if your claim does not qualify for a fast-tracking program, there are benefits to choosing expert SSDI representation. SSDI representatives such as Allsup rely on decades of expertise to document and develop individual claims and assist with the disability appeal if the claim is denied.

For more information about fast-tracking a claim, or to learn if you may qualify for Social Security disability benefits, please contact the Allsup Disability Evaluation Center at (800) 678-3276 for a free SSDI evaluation.

1 – International Social Security Association, QDD and CAL Initiatives, 2009.

Allsup is a nationwide provider of Social Security disability, Medicare and Medicare Secondary Payer compliance services for individuals, employers and insurance carriers. Founded in 1984, Allsup employs nearly 800 professionals who deliver specialized services supporting people with disabilities and seniors so they may lead lives that are as financially secure and as healthy as possible. The company is based in Belleville, Ill., near St. Louis. For more information, visit

Rebecca Ray
(800) 854-1418, ext. 65065


Dan Allsup, ext. 65760

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Rebecca Ray
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