Benefits for People with Disabilities

The Social Security and Supplemental Security Income disability
programs are the largest of several Federal programs that provide
assistance to people with disabilities. While these two programs
are different in many ways, both are administered by the Social
Security Administration and only individuals who have a disability
and meet medical criteria may qualify for benefits under either
program.

Social Security Disability
Insurance

pays benefits to you and certain members of your family
if you are “insured,” meaning that you worked long enough
and paid Social Security taxes.

Supplemental Security Income
pays benefits based on financial need.


When you apply for either program, we will collect medical and
other information from you and make a decision about whether
or not you meet Social Security’s definition of disability.

Use the Benefits Eligibility Screening Tool
to find out which programs may be able to pay you benefits.

If your application has recently been denied, the Internet Appeal is a starting point to request a review of our decision about your eligibility for disability benefits.

If your application is denied for:

  • Medical reasons, you can complete and submit the required Appeal Request and Appeal Disability Report online.


    The disability report asks you for updated information about your medical condition and any treatment, tests or doctor visits since we made our decision.

  • Non-medical reasons, you should contact your local Social Security Office to request the review. You also may call our toll-free number, 1-800-772-1213, to request an appeal. People who are deaf or hard of hearing can call our toll-free TTY number, 1-800-325-0778.

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