Washington Disability Benefits: Social Security Filing and Appeals
Find out about Washington's state supplemental payments, plus how to appeal a denial of Social Security disability or SSI and whether you qualify for Medicaid.
If you are a resident of Washington, you could be eligible for federal Social Security disability benefits, Washington State's developmental disability benefits (through the Division of Developmental Disabilities), or payments for "ongoing additional requirements" (see below). Washington does not have a state-run short-term disability program.
Social Security Benefits Process in Washington
While you apply for federal disability benefits through your local Social Security office, your file is then sent to Washington’s Disability Determination Services (DDS) agency. Washington’s DDS is a part of the state's Department of Social and Health Services (DSHS). Claims examiners who work at DDS request your medical records, set up a consultative exam if necessary, and decide whether you meet Social Security’s definition of disabled.
DDS has three offices in Washington, located in Spokane, Seattle, and Olympia, but DDS asks all claimants with questions about their disability applications to contact the Olympia office. Its address is PO Box 9303, MS 45550, Olympia, WA 98507-9303. Its telephone number is 800-562-6074.
Disability Appeals in Washington
If your initial claim is denied, the next step in Washington is to seek ask the DDS to reconsider its decision. If your request for reconsideration is denied, the next step is to ask for a hearing with an administrative law judge (ALJ). ALJ hearings are administered through Social Security’s Office of Disability Adjudication and Review (ODAR).
There are four ODAR offices that hold hearings for Washingtonians. Individuals living near Longview and Vancouver use the ODAR office in Portland, Oregon. Its address is Robert Duncan Plaza, 4th Floor, 333 SW 1st Avenue, Portland, Oregon 97204. Its telephone number is 866-964-6291.
Individuals living near Tacoma, Olympia, Kent, Grays Harbor, Puyallup, and Centralia use the ODAR office in Tacoma. Its address is Suite 200, 2413 Pacific Avenue, Tacoma, Washington 98402. Its telephone number is 888-208-4640
Individuals living near Kennewick, Pullman, Spokane, Walla Walla, and Wenatchee use the Spokane ODAR office. Its address is 714 N Iron Bridge Way, Ste 200, Spokane, Washington 99202-4929. Its telephone number is 888-253-3903.
Individuals living near Bellevue, Bellingham, Bremerton, Everett, Lynnwood, Mt. Vernon, Port Angeles, Renton, Seattle, and Yakima use the Seattle ODAR office. Its address is 300 5th Avenue, Suite 500, Seattle, Washington 98104-3389. Its telephone number is 888-366-6144.
Washington Supplemental Payments for SSI Recipients
Washington administers its own system of supplemental state payments for SSI recipients. Individuals receiving SSI in Washington are eligible for these supplemental payments in different amounts, depending on their living situations. Washington SSI recipients who are either living independently or living in another’s household receive a monthly supplement of $46. SSI recipients who live in an institution that accepts Medicaid are eligible for a monthly state supplement of only $27.28. Children who receive SSI are also eligible for supplemental payments.
In addition to the state supplement, Washington offers another program that can help pay for certain services that an SSI recipient needs in order to keep living independently. The services are: restaurant meals (up to $187/month); laundry (up to $11/month); service animal food (up to $33/month); home delivered meals (at the price charged by the agency delivering the food); and the cost of maintaining basic local phone service. Washington calls these services “ongoing additional requirements.” To apply, call 877-501-2233 or visit your local Department of Social and Health Services office. You can find your local office by entering your zip code at the DSHS website.
Washington Disability Attorneys
If you need to appeal a disability denial, you can locate an attorney to handle your disability case in Washington by using our Washington disability attorney locator tool.