There are many ways you can try to expedite the award of benefits. First, you should apply as soon as it is clear that you are disabled and likely unable to work for a year or more. Second, whenever you receive a denial letter from SSA, you should appeal immediately even though you are allowed 60 days. Third, you should avoid delay by responding immediately to all correspondence and inquiries by SSA or DDS, and by never missing appointments. Fourth, you should make sure that SSA or DDS has all relevant medical evidence at the earliest possible time. These are just a few examples.
Moreover, SSA’s rules allow for expedited processing in some circumstances, such as when:
i. The applicant is without food and is unable to obtain it;
ii. The applicant lacks medicine or medical care and is unable to obtain it, or the applicant indicates that access to necessary medical care is restricted because of lack of resources;
iii. The applicant lacks shelter (e.g., without utilities such that his or her home is uninhabitable, homelessness, expiration of a shelter stay, or imminent eviction or foreclosure with no means to remedy the situation or obtain shelter;
iv. The applicant has a terminal illness;
v. When the applicant is a veteran and the VA determines that his disability is 100% permanent and total (VPAT);
vi. The applicant is suicidal, homicidal or potentially violent.
vii. The applicant is a Military Casualty/Wounded Warrior;
viii. The applicant qualified for a Compassionate Allowance (there are approximately 200 conditions considered severe enough to meet SSA’s standards for disability benefits, primarily consisting of certain cancers, adult brain disorders, and a number of rare disorders that affect children).