In Connecticut, the initial approval or denial decision for Social Security or SSI Disability is made by a Connecticut state agency, but otherwise the process is generally the same as in other states. Below we highlight the information that is specific to Connecticut and provide contact information for helpful resources in Connecticut.
In Connecticut, the initial approval for those applying for Social Security benefits is slightly lower than the national average, but the approval rate at the hearing level is higher than the national average. Here are the specific approval ratings for Connecticut.
Initial Application: 29.9% approval rating (national average: 31.9%)
Reconsideration Review: 10.7% approval rating (national average: 11.2%)
ALJ Hearings: 63% approval rating (national average: 58.5%)
Wait Times for Hearings: 345 days (national average: 348 days)
In Connecticut, it is state law that individuals have access to their medical records. In general, health care providers may charge patients for a copy of their medical records, but there is an exception for individuals who are applying for Social Security benefits or appealing a Social Security benefits denial. If you are applying for Social Security benefits, you must be given one free copy of your medical records. You are entitled to another free copy of your medical records to support an appeal to Social Security for a denial of benefits. Your attorney or an authorized representative may request your medical records on your behalf. In order to receive either of these free copies, you must include documents with your request for your medical records that show you are applying Social Security benefits or filing an appeal.
Your health care providers must provide you with your records within 30 days of your request.
The Connecticut State Supplement Program provides a small supplemental payment to those who receive Supplemental Security Income (SSI). For an individual living independently, the monthly supplement is $168; for a couple, the amount is $274. For those living in a licensed room and board or medical facility, the supplementary payment depends on the living facility. The supplement is administered by the Connecticut Department of Social Services.
The Vocational Rehabilitation program (VR), under the Connecticut Bureau of Rehabilitation Services (BRS), is the program that the State of Connecticut offers to help persons with disabilities to find and keep jobs. VR offers services including vocational counseling, help with your job search, job training, help getting assistive technology you need to work, and support at your job if needed. As VR has limited resources, it is important to understand that not all who are disabled will receive vocational services; those with the greatest limitations will receive benefits from VR.
In order to obtain more information about or apply for VR, you may call 800-537-2549 or visit your local office. The 14 local offices and their contact information is noted below. VR offers an orientation for individuals to become familiar with what VR has to offer; it is recommended that you attend orientation before applying for VR benefits.
1057 Broad Street
Bridgeport, CT 06604
25 Sigourney Street, 11th Floor
Hartford, CT 06106
342 Main Street
Danbury, CT 06810
Danielson Works Center
95 Westcott Road
Danielson, CT 06239
3580 Main Street
Hartford, CT 06120
699 East Middle Turnpike
Manchester, CT 06040
117 Main Street Extension
Middletown, CT 06457
New Britain BRS
30 Christian Lane
New Britain, CT 06051
New Haven BRS
414 Chapel Street, Suite 301
New Haven, CT 06511
New London BRS
Shaw’s Cove Six – CT Works
New London, CT 06320
113 Salem Turnpike
North Bldg., Suite 200
Norwich, CT 06360
1642 Bedford Street
Stamford, CT 06905
62 Commercial Boulevard, Suite 1
Torrington, CT 06790
249 Thomaston Avenue
Waterbury, CT 06702
Connecticut Disability Determination Services (DDS) is in charge of making the medical determination of eligibility for your Social Security application. This state agency will determine if you are medically eligible to receive disability benefits. Here is the contact information for Connecticut DDS.
Disability Determination Services
309 Wawarme Avenue
Hartford, CT 06114
The Office of Disability Adjudication and Review (ODAR) is responsible for handling all disability appeals. There are two ODAR hearing offices in Connecticut that hear cases from the local SSA offices. The ODAR contact information and the local SSA offices that they cover are listed below.
Hartford ODAR Office
135 High Street, Room 331
William R. Cotter Federal Building
Hartford, CT 06103-1193
Provides services to the following local SSA offices: Bristol, East Hartford, Hartford, Meriden, Middleton, New Britain, New London, Norwich, Torrington, Waterbury, Willimantic
New Haven ODAR Office
Connecticut Financial Center
157 Church Street, 22nd Floor
New Haven, CT 06510
Provides services to the following local SSA offices: Ansonia, Bridgeport, Danbury, New Haven, Norwalk, Stamford
If you've been denied by Connecticut DDS, you should appeal the decision rather than filing a new application. You have only 60 days to appeal. There are several reasons why being represented by a lawyer improves your chances of winning on appeal. To find an experienced disability attorney in your area, see our Connecticut disability lawyers page.
by: Lorraine Netter, Contributing Author