If you live in Missouri, you can file a claim at one of the field offices located throughout the state. The Social Security Administration (SSA) manages the SSD program at the federal level, but you initially deal with your closest field office. After it reviews your application for any obvious errors, office personnel will forward your claim to one of the six Missouri Bureau of Disability Determination (BDD) offices, which will decide whether you qualify for disability benefits.
Disability can affect anyone at any time. If an illness or injury leaves you unable to work, you can apply for Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits, which can provide much-needed income for your daily living expenses.
Where Can You File for SSD Benefits in Missouri?
There are 10 SSA regions across the country each headed by a regional office. Missouri is in Region 7, along with Iowa, Nebraska, and Kansas. The primary office for Region 3 is in Kansas City, Kansas, while 32 field offices process disability claims. After confirming which office serves your area, you can send your application there. Depending on where you live, a BDD office in Cape Girardeau, Jefferson City, Kansas City, or Springfield will make a final determination on your claim.
Missouri Disability Statistics
These statistics provide a general overview of average processing times, wait times for a hearing, ODAR favorability ratings, and other details relevant to Missouri disability claimants. This information covers the 09/26/2020 through 10/30/2020 period.
Average Processing Time (in days)
- Columbia: 306
- Creve Coeur: 323
- Kansas City: 385
- Springfield: 364
- St. Louis: 324
Average Wait Time for Hearing (in months)
- Columbia: 8
- Creve Coeur: 9
- Kansas City: 11
- Springfield: 10
- St. Louis: 9
Hearings Held In-Person or Via Video
- Columbia: In Person (232) Video (47) Total: 279
- Creve Coeur: In Person (325) Video (8) Total: 333
- Kansas City: In Person (254) Video (167) Total: 421
- Springfield: In Person (133) Video (121) Total: 254
- St. Louis: In Person (126) Video (80) Total: 206
ODAR Office Approval Ratings (Indicates percentage of claims approved)
- Columbia: 41%
- Creve Coeur: 42%
- Kansas City: 43%
- Springfield: 30%
- St. Louis: 48%
Appealing Denied Social Security Disability Benefits in Missouri
In Missouri, only 36% of disability benefit applications are successful the first time around. This is roughly equal to the national average of 35%. What this means, however, is that many deserving claimants are rejected the first time they apply. Your chances of being approved for benefits increase at the hearing stage- 46% compared to the national average of 45%. You also have a shorter wait time for a hearing: 16 months compared to 18 or 19 months elsewhere.
It is important to understand that a denial does not mean that you don’t have a valid claim. Your application could be denied due to paperwork errors, incomplete documentation, and mistakes made when determining your monthly income.
The good news is that you can appeal a denial, but you must do so within 60 days. If you miss this deadline, you may lose your right to claim disability benefits, so it is important to act quickly and, ideally, with the assistance of a Social Security Disability lawyer.
An attorney can help you by:
- Ensuring that your application is thorough and complete, so it’s easier for DDS to see that you have a medically determinable impairment. Your attorney can explain what information you need and help you get it to the SSA.
- Helping you avoid mistakes that could damage your claim. Examples include missing the deadline for filing a claim or appeal.
- Guiding you through an appeal. Most benefit claims are denied in Missouri. A Social Security disability lawyer can fight for your rights if your claim is initially denied. They can guide you through a request for reconsideration, an appeal before an administrative law judge, and even an appeal to a federal court.
Help Filing for Disability Benefits in Missouri
Are you preparing to file a claim for Social Security disability benefits in Missouri? Or have you already submitted your application, only to be denied? Don’t give up! You can strengthen your case by reaching out to a local Missouri disability benefits lawyer. Your attorney can provide the trusted guidance you need to qualify for the benefits you need.
To get connected with an independent, participating lawyer who subscribes to the website, complete the Free Case Evaluation.