Filing a Disability Claim in Illinois

If you live in the state of Illinois you may file an application for disability benefits in that state. Most states offer disability benefits to applicants who are eligible to receive them. There are several obligations that need to be met including the disability being listed in the Social Security Administration (SSA) Blue Book listings.

If your disability doesn’t match an exact listing, the SSA may ask you take part in a Residual Functional Capacity assessment (RFC) undertaken by your doctor. The results of this help a decision to be made about your physical and mental abilities and whether you have the capability to go out to work.

Social Security Disability Benefits in Illinois

The Disability Determination Services office in Illinois is responsible for reaching a decision in relation to disability benefits claims. The following information is used to help arrive at that decision:

  • The applicant’s present health status and what is found in medical records;
  • The applicant’s personal statement that outlines the limitations of their disability;
  • Medical and emotional reports provided by the applicant’s doctor;
  • A long-term review of the disability.

In Illinois, as in other states, to qualify for Social Security Disability benefits (SSDI program), you need to have been in work for a certain number of years when you paid Social Security taxes (FICA) and accrued the required number of work credits. If you haven't worked for the required time when you become disabled and your income and assets are now below a certain threshold you could be entitled to lodge an application for Supplemental Security Income (SSI).

When lodging a social security disability benefits claim in Illinois the responsibility to assess your claim is from the federal government via the Social Security Administration (SSA). The disability Determination Service (DDS) makes the initial decision about your disability benefits claim in Illinois. You may file for disability benefits at field offices spread throughout the state.

Filing a Disability Claim in Illinois

Social Security Field offices In Illinois

In Illinois, you can visit a field office in one of these locations:

Alton, Aurora, Belleville, Bloomingdale, Bloomington, Carbondale, Champaign, Chicago, Chicago Heights, Danville, Decatur, East St Louis, Effingham, Elgin, Evanston, Freeport, Galesburg, Harrisburg, Hillside, Joliet, Kankakee, Litchfield, Mount Prospect, Mount Vernon, North Riverside, Palos Hills, Pekin, Peoria, Peru, Quincy, Rock Island, Rockford, Springfield, Sterling, Waukegan, West Frankfort, Woodridge, and Woodstock.

Illinois Disability Statistics

According to the Illinois Department of Public Health, almost 21.9 percent of Illinois adults have a disability compared to the nation’s average of 25.6 percent. If you apply for Social Security or SSI disability in Illinois, you will receive a decision in writing regarding your claim in about 3-4 months. Approximately 36 percent of those who apply for disability benefits in Illinois gain approval without having to lodge an appeal.

At the 1st appeal stage, the reconsideration stage, the denial rate is 91.7, percent while the approval rate is 8.3 percent. At the disability hearing, the denial rate is 50.9 percent, while the approval rate is 49.1 percent

Appealing Denied Social Security in Illinois

If you were recently denied Social Security disability (SSDI) benefits or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) in Illinois you may request an appeal. Generally, you are given 60 days after receiving the decision notice to lodge the appeal. At the hearing level, the decision on an SSI claim or SSD claim is made by a federal ALJ, or administrative law judge.

The hearing will take place at an ODAR, the Office of Disability Adjudication and Review. Fortunately, the hearings office will notify a claimant of their appointment for a disability hearing at least 20 days in advance of the hearing date. In most cases, claimants will have over a month to get ready to attend the appeal.

Help Filing for Disability Benefits in Illinois

It is not a simple process when filing for disability benefits in Illinois as there are so many parts of your disability claim that have to gain approval before you are granted any disability benefits.

A disability lawyer may be able to help you win your disability benefits claim in Illinois and can try to win a disability claim on your behalf so that an appeal may be avoided. However, if your claim is denied at the first stage and you file an appeal the disability lawyer can work hard to win an appeal in this often-long process so that you get the disability benefits you are entitled to receive.

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