Alabama Disability Benefits: Social Security Disability Insurance and SSI

Find out about Alabama's state supplemental payments, plus how to appeal a denial of Social Security disability or SSI and whether you qualify for Medicaid.

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If you become disabled and live in Alabama, you may be eligible for Social Security disability benefits, including Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI). While SSDI and SSI are both federal programs administered by the Social Security Administration (SSA), Alabama does things differently than in other states.

Alabama Disability Determination Services

Alabama’s Disability Determination Services (DDS) agency is the office that decides whether you are disabled, according to Social Security’s rules. After your initial application is complete, questions about your case should be directed to DDS. There are DDS offices in Mobile and Birmingham. Here is their contact information.

DDS
P.O. Box 830300
Birmingham, AL 35283
(205) 989-2100

DDS
2000 Bay Front Rd
Mobile, AL 36605
(251) 433-2820

Mailing address:
P.O. Box 2371
Mobile, AL 36615

Appeals Process

The SSA chose Alabama as one of the states to participate in its project to streamline the appeals to initial disability decisions. As part of this project, the Reconsideration, the first step in the appeals process, was removed. As a result, in Alabama, there are three steps to the appeals process.

  • Step 1: Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) Hearing. At this hearing, a judge will consider any new evidence and will review the decision made by Alabama DDS. Hearing wait times are typically over a year in Alabama, partially due to the elimination of the Reconsideration step.

  • Step 2: Appeals Council. The Appeals Council will hear cases only that it finds were decided based on incorrect procedures or law. If the AC rules a case was decided incorrectly, the AC can hear the case itself or send it back to the ALJ to be re-heard (called remanded).
  • Step 3: Federal Court. If the AC denies your claim, or does not choose to hear it, you can bring your case to federal court in Alabama.

Office of Disability Adjudication and Review

The Office of Disability Adjudication and Review (ODAR) is the office that handles all appeals processes for disability claims. There are ODAR offices in Florence, Montgomery, Birmingham, and Mobile. To find out which is your hearing office, you can call the regional ODAR office at (404)562-1182.

SSI Disability Payments

If you receive SSI, the federal monthly benefit amount for an individual is $710 and $1,066 per couple, but whether you receive this full amount depends on your income.

Alabama also offers additional payments for those receiving SSI and using home health care or living in a treatment center. See the table below for the additional amounts (called a state supplement).

Living Situation

Individual

Couple

Receiving Independent Home-Life Care

$56-60

$112-$120

Receiving Specialized Independent Home-Life Care

$60

$120

Living in a CP Treatment Center

$196

$392

Alabama Disability Lawyers

When filing a Social Security disability claim or appealing a decision, it usually makes sense to hire a lawyer who is familiar with the Social Security laws and how they are different in Alabama. You can arrange a free consultation with an Alabama disability lawyer here.

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