How to File for Disability in Wisconsin

Four Methods:Compiling Information on your DisabilityFiling for Disability on the InternetAlternative Methods for Filing DisabilityDisability Benefits Information

To file for disability in Wisconsin, you must complete an application that outlines the details of your medical condition and submit it to the Social Security Administration (SSA). The SSA then sends your information to the Wisconsin Disability Determination Bureau (DDB), which is an organization comprised of medical professionals and examiners who review your information and decide if you are eligible to receive disability benefits. There are currently three ways to file for disability: either online at the SSA website, in person at a local SSA office, or over the telephone with an SSA representative.

Method 1
Compiling Information on your Disability

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    Gather information about all your health care providers. The Wisconsin DDB will need the phone numbers, addresses, and names of all your doctors and health care providers.
    • Refer to your medical records for help with gathering this information.
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    Compile information about your prescription medication. The Wisconsin DDB will review the names of your medications and may consult with the health care providers that prescribed them.
    • Refer to your medicine or prescription bottles to determine their names, doses, and identity of the prescribing entity.
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    Compile information about medical and laboratory tests. The Wisconsin DDB will review the dates on which you experienced or took medical tests.
    • Refer to your medical records or consult with your health care providers to determine the exact dates on which you took any medical tests.
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    Collect Social Security Number (SSN) information. You will need to release your SSN to the SSA for the processing of your disability claim.
    • If you have a spouse or minor children, you will be required to release their SSNs to the SSA in addition to your own SSN.
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    Gather your financial information. The DDB will review your financial earnings for help with determining if you are eligible to receive benefits.
    • Obtain a copy of your W-2 Form from the previous year, or your IRS 1040 and Schedules C forms from the previous year if you are self-employed.
    • Obtain your checking account number and bank routing number if you want your disability payments to be deposited directly into your bank account.
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    Compile your military discharge information. This step is only required if you were discharged from the military due to your disability.
    • Obtain form DD 214, which is the document you were issued upon being discharged from the military.
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    Compile job descriptions of your last five jobs. The Wisconsin DDB will use information about your last five jobs to determine how the work you currently perform will be affected by your disability.
    • Contact your employers for the exact dates you worked at each job if you cannot remember this information.
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    Compile information about claims you filed with insurance companies. You will need to provide the DDB with the claim numbers, names, phone numbers, and addresses of each insurance company so the DDB can verify the outcomes of each claim.

Method 2
Filing for Disability on the Internet

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    Access the disability paperwork on the Internet.
    • Go to the Social Security website featured in the Sources section of this article, then click on the "Apply for Disability" button.
    • Answer the basic questions about your impairment on the right side of the website within the "To Start the Application Process" section, then click on "Apply for Benefits." You will then be taken to the online disability paperwork.
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    Fill out the online disability paperwork. The application process will require you to fill out the Disability Benefit Application, the Adult Disability Report, and the Authorization to Disclose Information form.
    • Enter your personal and medical information about your disability into each corresponding field on the forms. You may need to refer to all the information you compiled regarding your disability.
    • Click on "Next" at the bottom of every page of the online application to be taken through the disability paperwork.
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    Take the required paperwork to the nearest Social Security office. When you have completed the online disability paperwork, you will be given instructions that inform you of paperwork needed by the local SSA office, such as your birth certificate.
    • You will also have the option to send your paperwork by mail, if you do not want to physically visit the Social Security office.

Method 3
Alternative Methods for Filing Disability

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    Call the SSA to make an appointment to file for disability. The dates and times of available appointments may be limited depending on the volume of business at your local Social Security office.
    • Call 1-800-772-1213 at any time, 24 hours a day to make an appointment, or call 1-800-325-0778 between the hours of 7 a.m. and 7 p.m in your time zone Monday through Friday if you are deaf or hearing-impaired.
    • Indicate at the time you make your appointment whether you want to visit the Social Security office to file in person or if you want to file by telephone.
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    Attend your appointment with the Social Security office. During your appointment, you will complete and submit the disability paperwork for benefits.
    • Bring the personal and medical information you compiled for filing disability to the appointment. You may need to refer to this information when you complete the disability paperwork.

Method 4
Disability Benefits Information

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    Receive your response from the Wisconsin DDB. In most cases, you will receive information regarding whether or not you were approved to receive benefits within 100 days of filing the disability paperwork; however, this may take longer depending on the medical information you provided.
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    Review the disability benefits information. If the Wisconsin DDB approved your disability claim, you will begin to receive disability payments; however, if your claim was denied, you will have the option to file an appeal within 60 days of receiving the notice.


  • If the DDB asks you to provide additional documentation about your medical condition and you are unable to do so, you may be denied to receive disability benefits. Verify that you are able to obtain all your medical information prior to filing for disability.

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Categories: Disability Forms Permits and Benefits