Although we all hope that we will live long and productive lives, the truth is that disability can happen at any time. According to the CDC, around one out of every four adults in the U.S. is living with a disability that impacts major life activities.
If you are an Oklahoma resident, you can file a disability claim at one of the field offices in the state. Social Security Disability is a federal program but applications are received and processed by state agencies.
After the field office reviews your application, it will be forwarded to your local Bureau of Disability Determination (BDD) office. Depending on where you live, this could be in McAlester, Oklahoma City, or Tulsa.
Where Can You File for SSD Benefits in Oklahoma?
The Social Security Administration has 10 regions across the country, each one managed by a regional office. Oklahoma is in Region 6, along with Arkansas, Louisiana, New Mexico, Oklahoma, and Texas. The regional office is in Dallas, Texas, and there are 20 field offices to assist Oklahoma disability claimants.
When you want to apply for disability benefits in Oklahoma, submit your application and medical documentation to the closest field office. After reviewing your information, the field office will forward your claim to the Disability Determination Services (DDS) office that serves your area.
This office will make a final determination on whether or not you qualify for disability benefits, so if you have any questions about the outcome, you should direct them to this location.
Oklahoma Disability Statistics
The information below is intended to provide Oklahoma disability claimants with a general overview of what you can expect in terms of processing time, wait time for a hearing, ODAR office approval ratings, and more. This information covers the 09/26/2020 through 10/30/2020 period.
Average Processing Time (in days)
- McAlester: 294
- Oklahoma City: 322
- Tulsa: 325
Average Wait Time for Hearing (in months)
- McAlester: 9
- Oklahoma City: 9
- Tulsa: 9
Hearings Held In-Person or Via Video
- McAlester: In Person (30) Video (96) Total: 126
- Oklahoma City: In Person (319) Video (152) Total: 471
- Tulsa: In Person (267) Video (2) Total: 269
ODAR Office Approval Ratings
(Indicates percentage of claims approved)
- McAlester: 45%
- Oklahoma City: 60%
- Tulsa: 60%
Appealing Denied Social Security Disability Benefits in Oklahoma
On average, an estimated 71% of disability claims are denied in Oklahoma. This means that the approval rate is approximately 29%, which is lower than the national average of 35%. At the reconsideration stage, around 11% Oklahoma disability applicants are approved for benefits, compared to the 13% approved nationally.
At the hearing stage, however, the approval rate goes up to 58%, compared to 46% for the rest of the country. You also don’t have to wait as long for a hearing: the average in 16 months compared to the 18 months everywhere else.
A high number of deserving applicants are denied for comparatively minor issues such as:
- Errors on the application form
- Missing or incomplete documents
- Mistakes when calculating your income
If your disability claim is denied, you have up to 60 days to file an appeal in Oklahoma. Make sure that you do so before this deadline passes, as you could lose your right to claim the cash benefits that you and your family need.
Oklahoma has a lower approval rate for disability claims than a lot of other states, so you want to ensure that you put forward the best possible case for benefits. An SSD lawyer in your area can provide invaluable support at this time by:
- Helping you complete the application form
- Explaining what medical documentation you need to collect to prove your case
- Ensuring that your case for benefits is as strong as possible
If you are unable to work and need the SSD income to meet your necessary living expenses, a Social Security Disability attorney will give you the best chance at success.
Help Filing for Disability Benefits in Oklahoma
If you are planning to file for Social Security disability benefits in Oklahoma, working with an attorney will make your claim as strong as possible.
Should your claim be denied (which often happens), an Oklahoma disability benefits lawyer will represent you at any subsequent hearings and make sure that your rights are protected throughout the entire appeals process. To learn more about how an SSD lawyer can maximize your chances of being approved for the benefits you need, get a free case evaluation today.