People who apply for Social Security disability (SSD) benefits often experience frustrating delays in the process, and for some, a dire need request can help shorten the waiting time on a decision.
The question is, will writing a dire need letter or DNL work to speed up your disability claim? The approach isn’t always effective, but it may be worthy of consideration.
Criteria for Social Security Disability Dire Need Requests
Your disability claim may be processed more quickly if you can prove that you’re facing one or more of the following situations:
- You don’t have food and are unable to obtain it
- Your home is without utilities and has become uninhabitable
- You’re homeless and can no longer stay at a shelter
- You’re in imminent danger of eviction or foreclosure
- You cannot afford the medicine or medical care you need
The Social Security Administration (SSA) may also give your claim expedited processing if either of the following is true:
- You’re a veteran and you have received a 100 percent permanent and total disability compensation rating from the Department of Veterans Affairs
- You’re a current or former member of the military who sustained a physical or mental impairment while on active duty status
When to File a Social Security Disability Dire Need Request
You may have a pressing need for assistance, but you cannot file a request for faster processing with your initial disability application. And if your claim is denied, writing a DNL won’t expedite the reconsideration review, the first stage of the appeal process.
The only way a DNL could help is if the reconsideration doesn’t find in your favor. Submitting the letter at this point, when you request an appeal hearing before an administrative law judge, could shave a few months off of the wait time.
How to Write an Effective Dire Need Letter
Due to high case volumes, the SSA is unable to expedite disability claim processing for everyone who submits a DNL. For a better chance at speeding up your appeal hearing, you’ll need a compelling letter. SSD experts recommend:
- Writing the DNL yourself, as authenticity is crucial
- Including as many details as possible in the letter
- Attaching documentation that supports your claim
You can, of course, get guidance and advice on how to write a DNL. Here at Mountain West Disability, we assist clients with every stage of the SSD process. And while our professional team cannot guarantee an approval of your disability claim, we only collect a fee if we’re able to score a win.
Mountain West Disability, based in northern Utah, has been helping clients across the country for many years. For more information on Social Security disability dire need requests, contact us today.