Some Social Security Disability Insurance Applicants May Receive Benefits Faster

Share Article

Allsup explains SSA’s Quick Disability Determination, Compassionate Allowances programs

Allsup’s expert representatives can help determine if your application may qualify for these or other fast-tracking processes designed to speed Social Security disability benefits decisions.

Faced with increasing applications and lengthy waits for disability applicants, the Social Security Administration (SSA) implemented two programs designed to speed up the Social Security Disability Insurance application process. Applicants can benefit from understanding the availability of programs such as the Quick Disability Determination (QDD) and Compassionate Allowances (CAL) programs, according to Allsup, a nationwide provider of SSDI representation and Medicare plan selection services.

Both SSA programs are designed to expedite review of Social Security disability claims for faster SSDI decisions. “Allsup’s expert representatives can help determine if your application may qualify for these or other fast-tracking processes designed to speed Social Security disability benefits decisions,” said Mike Stein, assistant vice president of claims at Allsup. “Comprehensive development of your claim, with thorough details about your conditions, medical history and treatment, is an important benefit of working with representation on your claim. Providing enough detail and correct information are critical to benefit from programs such as these.”

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.

Historically, about two-thirds of all initial applications are denied. It’s not uncommon for SSDI applicants to wait two years or longer to receive their benefits. “Because this process can be so difficult, it’s critical that applicants receive assistance as early as possible in the application process,” Stein said. “SSDI specialists are going to be able to help determine the factors in your case that may benefit from SSA programs.”

The SSA’s Quick Disability Determination (QDD) program is based on a computer model that allows SSA to screen cases with a high potential for approval. The Compassionate Allowances (CAL) program was created to quickly identify diseases and other medical conditions that clearly meet SSDI and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) requirements. The CAL program initially covered 50 conditions—25 rare diseases and 25 cancers. This number was increased a year ago, effective March 1, to include an additional 38 conditions, for a total 88 conditions covered under the CAL program. Find more information about Compassionate Allowances on

Who Qualifies for These Expedited 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 (FY) 2010.1 The SSA fast-tracked 20 percent more cases in FY 2010 compared to FY 2009.
  •     By the end of 2012, SSA expects this amount to increase to between 6 and 9 percent.2
  •     The processing time for these cases typically takes less than two weeks on average.3

Additional Help for Faster Disability Benefits
The SSA also recently revised its rules to permit disability examiners to make fully favorable determinations in certain claims for disability benefits without medical or psychological consultant approval. These changes apply only to claims the SSA considers under its rules for QDD or CAL.

Even if your claim does not qualify for a fast-tracking program, there are benefits from using expert representation. SSDI representatives such as Allsup go beyond the initial application to assist with documenting and developing your claim, as well as preparing disability appeals if your claim is denied. “We use our experience with the Social Security disability process to help SSDI applicants receive their benefits as quickly as possible,” Stein said.

If you have questions about your disability and whether you may qualify for Social Security disability benefits, please contact the Allsup Disability Evaluation Center at (800) 279-4357 for a free SSDI evaluation.

1 – SSA Performance and Accountability Report, FY 2010.
2 – International Social Security Association, QDD and CAL Initiatives, 2009.
3 – SSA, Social Security Fast-Track Disability Processes Get Even Faster, 2010.

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 more than 700 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

# # #

Share article on social media or email:

View article via:

Pdf Print

Contact Author

Rebecca Ray
(800) 854-1418 65065
Email >
Visit website