Michigan Disability BenefitsUpdated May 21, 2021 Social Security Disability
Michigan residents with disabilities have a number of resources to receive financial assistance, including federal and state programs. At the federal level, the Social Security Administration (SSA) oversees Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits.
These disability services are run through Michigan Disability Determination Services (DDS) which processes all SSA disability claims and determines what benefits are awarded.
Michigan disability services also extend to state programs like their State Disability Assistance (SDA), unemployment benefits, workers' compensation, and Medicaid (a joint federal and state program). Michigan currently does not provide state short-term disability benefits, but you may qualify for coverage through private insurance companies or your employer.
Facts About Michigan
Nearly one in three Michigan residents has some kind of disability. 14% of Michiganders have a cognitive or developmental disability, and 13% have a physical disability. Disabled individuals in Michigan also have a higher likelihood of having obesity, smoking, or suffering from diabetes or heart disease.
Only 4.8% of residents currently receive Social Security disability benefits, leaving a large portion of the disabled population without financial assistance.
How To Qualify for SSDI in Michigan
The criteria for receiving Social Security Disability are the same in all states since it is a federally funded program. The two main criteria to meet are connected to the severity of your disability and whether you’ve worked long enough to pay into the Social Security system.
The SSA has compiled a comprehensive list of disabilities that it considers “severe” enough to earn disability insurance. Please consult this list before submitting your disability claim to ensure your condition is on it. Your condition must limit your ability to work for at least 12 months to qualify.
You will also have to show an adequate work history, meaning you have paid enough in taxes to qualify to receive assistance. The minimum amount of time that an individual must work is typically 10 years. Note that this can vary depending on your age and disability.
If you are currently working in some capacity, you are protected under federal law from disability discrimination. Your employer must provide any reasonable accommodation to help you complete your job duties.
Even if you meet SSA requirements, your claim still may be denied. Since determination is made at the state level, it’s up to Michigan DDS to review your application. In the state of Michigan, roughly 65% of all first-time applications are denied. However, if you receive a denial, you can start the appeals process to pursue your benefits.
How To Apply for SSDI in Michigan
There are three ways to apply for SSD benefits— in person, online, or over the phone. Applications for SSDI in Michigan are made to your local Social Security field office. Michigan has 45 offices throughout the state.
Applying online at the federal Social Security website is the fastest way for an applicant to submit their claim, or you can also call (800) 772-1213 to speak with a representative who can walk you through the process. If you wish to apply in person, you’ll need to schedule an appointment first.
Before you apply, take the time to compile the appropriate documentation and medical evidence to support your claim. In general, you should have the following:
- Personal information: Full names and DOB’s for you, your spouse, and any minor children. They may also ask for Social Security numbers, birth certificates, or marriage or divorce documents.
- Medical records associated with your disability. This includes contact information for doctors, clinics, or existing services and should cover any physical, intellectual, or mental illness.
- Past and current employment information
How To Appeal a Denial in Michigan
Approximately 65% of applicants are denied on their initial application. Don’t lose hope if this happens to you. Most people submit at least one appeal before their case is approved.
There are 4 stages of the appeals process. Each level of the appeals process must be submitted within 60 days of the previous denial, and you must go through each stage before moving on to the next.
Step 1: Reconsideration - The first step is to request to have a different SSA representative review your disability case to see if an error was made. This is the fastest and easiest level of the appeals process and you don’t need to provide any additional documentation. In Michigan, 30% of applications are approved at this level.
Step 2: Disability Adjudication - If your reconsideration was denied, you may request a formal hearing with an administrative law judge. You’ll likely be asked to bring additional documentation or witnesses who can support your case, and many people choose to hire a disability attorney. Unfortunately, it can take over a year to get a hearing date at one of seven Hearing and Appeal Offices in the state.
Step 3: Appeal Council - In the third level of appeals, you’ll request to have an Appeals Council review the previous decisions. At this stage, most people will hire an attorney versed in disability law.
Step 4: District Court - At this highest level of appeals you will request that a federal district court review the Appeals Court decision. There are two federal district courts in Michigan, one in Detroit and one in Grand Rapids.
More Michigan Benefits
Supplemental Security Income (SSI) is another Social Security benefit like SSDI. SSI benefits are intended for those with very low income who are disabled, blind, or over 65 years old. When you apply for SSDI, the DDS will evaluate your application to see if you also qualify for SSI benefits.
Michigan provides State Disability Assistance (SDA) run by the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS). This program provides cash assistance to disabled residents (or in some cases those 65+ without a disability) or to a caretaker of a disabled person.
Those seeking SDA benefits can apply online using MI Bridges, or you can get personalized help by contacting your local county office. Beneficiaries will receive aid via a Bridge card which can be used like a debit card to withdraw cash or pay for items like groceries.
If you qualify for SSDI benefits, you automatically qualify for SDA. You can also qualify if you are living in a “qualified Special Living Arrangement facility,” like housing for aged, infirmed, or disabled adults. You can also receive SDA benefits if you’re in an independent living situation receiving help from a caretaker.
Michigan Medicaid offers health insurance and other health-related services to individuals earning less than $17,131 a year. Most people who qualify for SSI will also qualify for Medicaid. Recipients of Medicaid typically have to pay a very low co-pay for services that average $2 to $3 per service.
Those who need temporary financial assistance due to a loss of employment through no fault of their own can apply for Michigan unemployment benefits, managed by the Michigan Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity. This is a weekly cash benefit of up to $362. The fastest and easiest way to submit an unemployment claim is online through the state’s Michigan Web Account Manager (MIWAM).
Michigan Social Security Offices
|SSA Field Office Locations in Michigan|
|Ludington SSA Office||150 N Jebavy Dr|
Ludington, MI 49431
|West Branch SSA Office||2938 Hansen Rd|
West Branch, MI 48661
|Detroit-D/T SSA Office||477 Michigan Ave|
McNamara Bldg Rm 450
Detroit, MI 48226
|Marquette SSA Office||300 S Front St 1St Floor, Ste 1|
Marquette, MI 49855
|Grand Rapids SSA Office||3045 Knapp St Ne|
Grand Rapids, MI 49525
|Saginaw SSA Office||611 E. Genesee Ave.|
Saginaw, MI 48607
|Flint-Downtown||1149 Robert T Longway|
Flint, MI 48503
|Pontiac SSA Office||1280 Pontiac Rd|
Pontiac, MI 48340
|Jackson SSA Office||234 W Louis Glick Hwy Ste 200|
Jackson, MI 49201
|Traverse City SSA Office||1329 S Division St|
Traverse City, MI 49684
|Kalamazoo SSA Office||317 South Drake Road|
Kalamazoo, MI 49009
|Lansing SSA Office||5210 Perry Robinson|
Lansing, MI 48911
|Escanaba SSA Office||1013 1St Ave North|
Escanaba, MI 49829
|Bay City SSA Office||1115 Washington Ave|
Bay City, MI 48708
|Detroit-East SSA Office||19251 Mack Ave Suite 200|
Detroit, MI 48236
|Detroit-High Pk||60 East Grand Avenue|
Highland Park, MI 48203
|Battle Creek SSA Office||5700 Beckley Rd Ste D1|
Battle Creek, MI 49015
|Muskegon SSA Office||340 Morris Avenue|
Muskegon, MI 49440
|Dearborn SSA Office||19853 Outer Drive Suite 200|
Dearborn, MI 48124
|Fort Gratiot SSA Office||2620 Krafft Rd|
Fort Gratiot, MI 48059
|Detroit-NW SSA Office||26840 W Seven Mile Rd|
Redford, MI 48240
|Roseville SSA Office||15250 E 12 Mile Rd|
Roseville, MI 48066
|Bent Har-St Joe||455 Bond St|
Benton Harbor, MI 49022
|Ann Arbor SSA Office||3971 Research Park Dr Suite A|
Ann Arbor, MI 48108
|Mount Pleasant SSA Office||1940 Sweeney St|
Mt Pleasant, MI 48858
|Petoskey SSA Office||308 State St Suite 8|
Petoskey, MI 49770
|Monroe SSA Office||1300 S Telegraph Rd|
Monroe, MI 48161
|Alpena SSA Office||111 N 4th Ave|
Alpena, MI 49707
|Grand River SSA Office||9222 Grand River Ave|
Detroit, MI 48204
|Detroit 7 Mile SSA Office||10201 W Seven Mile Rd|
Detroit, MI 48221
|Detroit Conner SSA Office||3400 Conner St|
Detroit, MI 48215
|Clawson SSA Office||140 North Crooks|
Clawson, MI 48017
|Sault St Marie SSA Office||2861 Ashmun St Ste 1|
Sault Sainte Marie, MI 49783
|Wyandotte SSA Office||3450 Biddle Ave|
Wyandotte, MI 48192
|Holland SSA Office||657 Hastings Ave|
Holland, MI 49423
|Adrian SSA Office||1040 S Winter St|
Adrian, MI 49221
|Owosso SSA Office||306 North Gould Street|
Owosso, MI 48867
|Farmington SSA Office||27650 Farmington Rd|
Farmington Hills, MI 48334
|Inkster SSA Office||28657 Cherry Hill Rd|
Inkster, MI 48141
|Chesterfield SSA Office||26200 21 Mile Road|
Chesterfield, MI 48051
|Detroit-SW SSA Office||5715 Michigan Ave|
Detroit, MI 48210
|Big Rapids SSA Office||502 N State St Ste A|
Big Rapids, MI 49307
|Livonia SSA Office||34010 Plymouth Road|
Livonia, MI 48150
|Sterling Heights||7385 Triangle Drive|
Sterling Heights, MI 48314
|North Flint SSA Office||2021 W. Carpenter Rd|
Flint, MI 48505
Michigan Hearing and Appeal Offices
Michigan is in Region 5 (Chicago), which services Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, and Wisconsin.
|Region 5 - SSA Office of Hearing Operations in Michigan|
|SSA Hearing Office - Detroit||477 Michigan Avenue, Rm 900|
Patrick V. McNamara Fed Bldg
Detroit, MI 48226
|SSA Hearing Office - Flint||300 West Second Street|
Flint, MI 48502-2047
|SSA Hearing Office - Grand Rapids||1925 Breton Road SE Suite 200|
Grand Rapids, MI 49506
|SSA Hearing Office - Lansing||4202 Collins Road Suite 200|
Lansing, MI 48910
|SSA Hearing Office - Livonia||19575 Victor Parkway 3rd Floor|
Livonia, MI 48152
|SSA Hearing Office - Mount Pleasant||4035 Sweeney Road|
Mount Pleasant, MI 48858
|SSA Hearing Office - Oak Park||25900 Greenfield Road|
Crown Pointe Bldg Suite 500
Oak Park, MI 48237-1267