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FAQs about SSI & SSDI

Answered by Our Muskegon SSDI Attorney

If you are pursuing Social Security disability benefits from the Social Security Administration (SSA), you probably have a lot of questions regarding who is eligible for disability payments, how the process works, how to file an appeal, and more. This page answers some of the most commonly asked questions. Schedule a free consultation with our Muskegon SSDI attorney by calling (231) 403-0040. We serve clients in Grand Rapids and the surrounding West Michigan areas.

  • How Much Will I Receive in Benefits?

    Supplemental Security Income (SSI) payments are based on need. The monthly maximum benefit amount starting in 2019 is $771 per month for individuals, and $1,157 for couples. However, depending on your situation, you may not receive the full amount.

    Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) payments are based on the worker’s Social Security earnings before the disability occurred. That is, the more you earned prior to becoming disabled, the more your SSDI payments will be, up to a certain maximum.

    The amount you receive in benefits will also depend on the “onset date” for your disability. With a convincing case, you could receive months of back pay due to an early onset date ruling.

  • How Long Does It Take to Get a Decision?

    This depends on the level or “stage” at which your application is pending. When you first file your application, the decision is made by an office in Michigan called the “Disability Determination Service.” This is a state of Michigan agency that applies the SSA’s rules. After you file your application, it will probably take between 90 and 120 days to receive a decision.

    If your initial application for benefits is denied, you can appeal and request a hearing before an administrative law judge (ALJ). This means that, eventually, you will go before the judge to argue your case for disability benefits.

    Unfortunately, it can take months to schedule an appeal. The average wait time for a hearing in Grand Rapids is 14 months; in Lansing, it’s 12.1 months; and in Mt. Pleasant, it’s 17 months. It also takes some time after the appeal to receive the judge’s decision.

  • How Many Claims Get Approved?

    There are numerous Offices of Disability Adjudication and Review (ODARs) in Michigan. Their approval rates (the percentage of applications granted at the hearing level) vary from office to office.

    In 2018, certain West Michigan offices had the following approval rates:

    • Mount Pleasant: 43%
    • Grand Rapids: 42%
    • Lansing: 47%
    • Livonia: 53%
    • Flint: 46%

    The approval rate for the judge handling your case is also very important.

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Social Security Diability FAQs You have questions. We have answers. Learn More

Why Hire Michigan Disability Law?

Your Case Deserves the Best Case Scenario
  1. Loyally Representing Clients Across West Michigan
  2. Direct, Face-to-Face Contact with an Attorney
  3. Dedicated Representation from Start to Finish
  4. At the Forefront of Michigan Disability Claims Litigation
  5. Free Claim Evaluations & No Out-of-Pocket Payments
  6. No Fees Owed Unless & Until Benefits are Awarded
  7. 600+ Social Security Disability Claims & Appeals Handled
  8. Numerous Satisfied Clients with Compelling Stories
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