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.

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's does some 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
P.O. Box 2371
Mobile, AL 36615
(251) 433-2820

Appeals Process in Alabama

A new step was added to the appeals process in Alabama in October 2019: reconsideration. There are now four steps to the appeals process in Alabama.

  • Step 1: Reconsideration Request. After your initial application is denied by DDS, you request that a different claims examiner at DDS review your claim.

  • Step 2: 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.

  • Step 3: 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 4: 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 Hearings Operations

The Office of Hearings Operations (OHO) is the office that handles appeal hearings for disability claims. There are OHO offices in Florence, Montgomery, Birmingham, and Mobile. To find out which is your hearing office, you can call the regional OHO office at (404)562-1182.

SSI Disability Payments

If you receive SSI, the federal monthly benefit amount for an individual is $771 and $1,157 per couple (in 2019), 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. 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

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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