Filing for Social Security Disability in North Dakota

You have a better chance of being approved for disability benefits in North Dakota compared to the national average. Here are the statistics and contact information for the disability-related offices in North Dakota.

By , J.D. · University of Baltimore School of Law

If you're a resident of North Dakota and you can no longer work due to a disability, you may be eligible for SSDI (Social Security disability insurance) or SSI (supplemental security income). The Social Security disability benefits application and appeals process is very similar throughout the country, but there are some differences by state. Below are common questions about the application and appeals process in North Dakota, approval and denial rates in North Dakota, and contact information for the disability-related offices in Bismarck and Fargo.

How Do I Apply for and Get Disability Benefits in North Dakota?

You can apply for disability benefits online at SSA's website or through a local Social Security field office. At the field office (or over the phone), a Social Security claims representative will review your application to make sure you've met all of the technical requirements for benefits (such as the work history requirements for SSDI or the income limits for SSI).

If you meet the technical requirements, the Social Security Administration (SSA) will send your application to a claims examiner at North Dakota's Disability Determination Services (DDS), a state agency in Bismarck, for a medical decision to be made on your records. DDS is administered by the North Dakota Department of Human Services.

A claims examiners who works at DDS will review the medical records and work history in your file and decide whether you have a condition that meets Social Security's definition of disability.

What Is the Phone Number for the North Dakota DDS?

A claims examiner from the Social Security office in Bismarck will probably contact you after receiving your file. Here is the phone number and address for the DDS office that handles all claims in North Dakota.

Disability Determination Services
1237 West Divide, Suite 4
Bismarck, North Dakota 58501
701-328-8700 (TTY 711-328-8700)

Before you file your application, you should ask any questions of the field representative at your local field office. Or you can call the SSA at 800-772-1213, but be prepared for a long wait.

But after filing your application, you can direct any questions and concerns to the Disability Determination Services office in Bismarck.

What Happens If My Claim Is Denied?

If the claims examiner at North Dakota's DDS denies your claim, you can ask that it be reconsidered by a different claims examiner by filing a reconsideration request (this is the first level of appeal).

If your claim is denied again, you can request a hearing by filing a request for a hearing with an administrative law judge (the second level of appeal). The DDS will then send your file to the Office of Hearings Operations (OHO), a Social Security office in Fargo, where a judge will decide your case at a disability hearing.

Where Is North Dakota's Hearing Office?

If you request a hearing, it will be held at the local hearing office in Fargo. This hearing office handles claims from the field offices in Bismarck, Devils Lake, Fargo, Grand Forks, Jamestown, Minot, and Williston. Here is the address and phone number for the hearing office:

Office of Hearings Operations
655 First Avenue North, Suite 150
Fargo, North Dakota 58102-4971

Telephone: (877) 319-3073

Before your hearing, you may want to check for address and phone number changes with Social Security's hearing office locator.

What Are My Chances of Approval in North Dakota?

Your chance of having the Bismarck DDS approve your initial disability application is 48%, which is higher than the national average.

If, like most applicants, you get denied, you can ask DDS to reconsider the claim. Out of those who request a reconsideration from the DDS office, 17% are approved for benefits.

If you get denied a second time, you can request a hearing to appeal the denial. The average wait time in North Dakota to get a hearing has dropped over the years, and at the end of 2023, it was only 9 months.

After attending a disability hearing in Fargo, you have a 63% chance of having the administrative law judge (ALJ) approve your disability benefits, which is higher than the national average of 59%.

Stage of Application

North Dakota


Initial Application









Hearing Wait Time

9 months

10 months

Source: ALJ Disposition Data Fiscal Year 2023 and Average Wait Time Until Hearing, December 2023 (Social Security).

How Much Are Disability Benefits in North Dakota?

The average SSDI payment in North Dakota is $1,389 per month, but some people can receive up to $3,822, depending on the income they earned over their lifetime. (Widows and disabled adult children receive less.) Read more about how Social Security calculates your SSDI payment.

Monthly SSI payments can go up to $943 per individual and $1,415 per couple in 2024. But this payment is adjusted if you have additional income above the allowable limit. Because most SSI recipients have some type of extra income (including free food and shelter), the average SSI payment in North Dakota was only $562 at the end of 2022.

Some states offer a state supplement to SSI, but unfortunately, North Dakota does not. So the money you will be receiving from your disability benefits will be fully paid by the federal government.

Is Disability Income Taxable in North Dakota?

North Dakota exempts 100% of Social Security benefits and SSI benefits from a resident's tax liability. That means the state doesn't tax SSDI or SSI payments.

But people with higher incomes may owe federal taxes on a portion of their SSDI benefits (but not SSI benefits).

Additional Assistance for Disability Recipients in North Dakota

In home and adult foster care. North Dakota has a program called "Service Payments for the Elderly and Disabled" (SPED) that offers financial assistance with the costs of adult foster care and in-home services like housekeeping and chore services, emergency telephone service, payments to relative caregivers, respite care, and case management. To apply, contact the social services office in your county.

Medicaid. While SSI recipients are not automatically eligible for Medicaid in North Dakota, most SSI recipients will find that they are eligible. In fact, North Dakota's Medicaid resource limit of $3,000 for an individual is higher than the SSI countable resource limit of $2,000, so some individuals who have too many assets to qualify for SSI will still qualify for Medicaid. Still, because North Dakota makes its own Medicaid eligibility determinations, you have to fill out a Medicaid application and submit it. (You can use this same application to apply for help with your Medicare premiums and copays, if you receive SSDI and are enrolled in Medicare.) For help, you can visit your local social services office.

Vocational rehabilitation. For those who want to try to return to work but need help, North Dakota's Division of Vocational Rehabilitation (DVR) offers vocational services such as counseling and training, adaptive equipment, and job placement. Here is VR's address and phone number:

Division of North Dakota Vocational Rehabilitation State Offices
1000 E Divide Avenue
Bismarck, North Dakota 58501
Telephone: 701-328-8950

Disability rights. The Protection & Advocacy Project in North Dakota assists people with disability-related issues like vocational rehabilitation and asserting their rights regarding disability, though it doesn't assist with disability applications. Here is this organization's contact information:

North Dakota Protection & Advocacy Project
400 East Broadway, Suite 409
Bismarck, ND 58501

Updated February 8, 2024

Other Sources:
Annual Statistical Report on the Social Security Disability Insurance Program, 2022
Annual Statistical Supplement, 2023

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