The Social Security Administration (SSA) allows each state to handle certain aspects of the disability evaluation and appeal process for those who are applying for disability benefits. For the most part, applying for disability benefits in Oklahoma does not look much different than applying from any other state, but there are a few statistics and procedures unique to the state.
In the state of Oklahoma, all applications filed in the state travel to the Disability Determination Division (DDD), which is part of the Department of Rehabilitative Services. They handle all incoming applications for benefits, whether the person has applied for benefits through the Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) program or the Supplemental Security Income (SSI) program.
In Oklahoma, about 28.6 percent of all applicants receive an approval in the first stage. This is slightly lower than the national average, which is 32.1 percent. Once applicants move on to the hearing stage, the approval rate increases to 51.8 percent. Still, this is lower than the national approval rate for this stage, which is 58.3 percent. The average wait to hear the decision on your benefits case is lower on average in Oklahoma than nationally. Most people wait 330 days for a hearing in our state, as opposed to 349 days nationally.
Oklahoma provides its residents with Vocational Rehabilitation Centers (VR) for benefits recipients who are considering a return to work. As we mentioned in Monday’s post, Oklahoma provides a small “state supplement benefit” for people on SSI.
Regardless of what state you live in, working with an experienced attorney has been shown to improve your chances of gaining the benefits you need, and doing so in less time. We will walk with you through every step of the process, from gathering your medical records and other information, to attending a hearing or filing an appeal, if necessary. If you have questions or concerns about applying for disability benefits, contact our Tulsa Social Security disability lawyers for a free consultation. You may also reach us at (918) 587-0050.