Social Security Disability Approval Rates Remain Low, Allsup Reports

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Allsup explains importance of help with Social Security disability application; low approval rates, long wait times worsen hardship for people with severe disabilities

Mike Stein, assistant vice president of claims, Allsup

Mike Stein -- Allsup

“It’s more critical than ever to understand the Social Security disability application process, the evidence required, and realize that getting help with your application can help improve your chances of a successful SSDI claim.” – Mike Stein, Allsup

Belleville, Ill. —Aug. 8, 2016 — Approval rates for people seeking Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits in 2015 remained at historic lows, according to Allsup, the nation’s premier provider of SSDI representation services. Only 33 percent of Social Security disability applicants were approved when they initially filed for benefits during fiscal year 2015. Just 45 percent of those who appealed and went to the hearing level were approved. In addition, hearing wait times continue to rise, reaching more than 700 days for tens of thousands of claimants.

“Disabled workers often face an uphill climb when applying for the SSDI benefits they earned through years of hard work,” said Mike Stein, Allsup assistant vice president of claims. “It’s become essential for people to have disability representation from experts like Allsup to guide them through the complex application process so they have the best possible chance of receiving SSDI benefits.”

Historically, Social Security disability applicants have faced a low approval rate, ranging from 32 percent to 35 percent in recent years, according to Allsup analysis of figures from the Social Security Administration (SSA). Hearing-level approvals have dropped to 45 percent in FY 2015 from 62 percent in FY 2010. Data for 2016 will be available after the Social Security Administration’s current fiscal year ends Sept. 30, 2016.

“It’s more critical than ever to understand the Social Security disability application process, the evidence required, and realize that getting help with your application can help improve your chances of a successful SSDI claim,” Stein explained.

“You have a big advantage by receiving help when you first apply in order to perhaps avoid the very long wait for a hearing,” he said. “Wait times now total more than two years for more than 37,000 SSDI claimants.”

Allsup now offers an extra level of online assistance for those first applying for benefits with empower by Allsup®, a dual purpose online tool for both SSDI benefits and return-to-work assistance. First-time applicants who choose Allsup have a 50 percent higher success rate with their SSDI application compared to the national rate at Social Security.

The SSA administers the SSDI program, which has stringent rules to receive benefits. To qualify for SSDI benefits, individuals must have paid FICA payroll taxes, usually worked five of the last 10 years, and have a severe work-disrupting injury or illness that is expected to last at least a year, or is terminal. Applicants also must be under full retirement age (65-67). Find more information on

Five Reasons To Get Help With SSDI Application

Allsup outlines the following top five reasons people should use empower by Allsup for help with their disability insurance application.

1. Individuals can learn in just minutes their likelihood of being eligible for Social Security disability benefits by using empower by Allsup. People with severe disabilities can avoid Social Security’s long lines and go online for a quick assessment. Learn more at
2. Time is crucial, and applicants with SSDI guidance from an expert such as Allsup are more likely to be approved on the first application. This means receiving benefits within months, instead of years.
3. Inexperienced applicants often make basic mistakes when filing. Applying on their own can be complicated. For example, an honest answer to a seemingly simple question could get someone’s benefits denied. Those who use empower by Allsup for their SSDI application have an advantage because it’s designed to ask applicants the right questions to document the information that the SSA requires for the disability determination process.
4. Allsup disability specialists know what is required to file claims quickly and accurately. This includes a streamlined, online process that includes user friendly video and audio messaging to assist empower by Allsup customers.
5. Receive ongoing support with empower by Allsup unlike anything else available. This includes receiving information upfront about all the benefits of the SSDI program, such as work incentives that help individuals return to work if they medically recover. Allsup disability specialists also provide live 24/7 customer service and support.

Learn about filing an SSDI application with empower by Allsup® at

Allsup and its subsidiaries provide nationwide Social Security disability, veterans disability appeal, re-employment, exchange plan and Medicare services for individuals, their employers and insurance carriers. Allsup professionals deliver specialized services supporting people with disabilities and seniors so they may lead lives that are as financially secure and as healthy as possible. Founded in 1984, the company is based in Belleville, Illinois, near St. Louis. Visit

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