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Average Social Security Disability Benefits By State

Written by
Photo of Derek Silva — Atticus Author
Derek Silva
Data Journalist and Content Lead
January 30, 2023  ·  3 min read

For people who can’t work because of a health condition or disability, there are two types of federal disability benefits. They differ primarily based on whether or not someone has ever been able to work.

Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) is available to individuals who have worked for years and paid Social Security taxes but can’t work anymore because of a disability or health condition. Supplemental Security Income (SSI) is available to low-income individuals who have little or no work history and aren’t able to work because of a medical condition.

Both types of benefits are managed by the Social Security Administration (SSA). According to 2022 data from the SSA, nearly 7.9 million disabled workers are receiving SSDI. There are just over 6.5 million SSI recipients.

Too sick to work? You can get up to $3,822 a month.

Average disability benefits

The latest SSA data shows the average monthly SSDI benefit is $1,483.10 for disabled workers. That average is well below the maximum possible benefit, which is $3,822 in 2024. Someone’s exact SSDI benefit will depend on their work history. (See how disability benefits are calculated.)

The average monthly SSI benefit is much lower at $600.74. The maximum possible benefit for SSI in 2024 is $943.

If these average benefits sound low to you, it’s because they are. A previous Atticus study found that disability benefits aren’t enough to live on. No matter which state someone lives in, SSDI benefits are rarely enough to cover half of living expenses and SSI benefits cover less than a third of living expenses.

Estimate your disability benefit amount in just a few steps

We'll use the Social Security Administration's formula to estimate your monthly benefit.

Average
monthly check

$1,489


States with the highest and lowest SSDI benefits

According to the most recent SSA report, New Jersey recipients have the highest average Social Security disability check at $1,648.06 per month, while SSDI recipients in Washington, D.C., have the lowest average monthly benefits at $1,217.00.

In most states, SSDI benefits are worth between $1,400 and $1,500 monthly, on average. Just 13 states have an average benefit worth more than $1,500 and only one state (New Jersey) has an average monthly benefit worth more than $1,600. At the other end, there are nine states where average SSDI benefits are worth less than $1,000 per month.

The state someone lives in doesn’t affect the value of their disability check but factors that vary by state — like average incomes or employment rates — could have an indirect effect on SSDI benefit amounts.

Related: What conditions qualify for disability benefits?

Average SSDI benefit amounts by state

Rank

State

Average monthly SSDI benefit

1

New Jersey

1,648.06

2

Delaware

1,599.97

3

Nevada

1,562.44

4

Connecticut

1,549.41

5

Arizona

1,542.92

6

Maryland

1,542.21

7

New York

1,540.57

8

Hawaii

1,532.11

9

New Hampshire

1,528.42

10

California

1,524.99

11

Florida

1,521.74

12

South Carolina

1,512.46

13

Michigan

1,508.94

14

Colorado

1,497.71

15

Virginia

1,497.40

16

Illinois

1,495.07

17

Washington

1,494.32

18

Pennsylvania

1,493.44

19

Massachusetts

1,493.30

20

Wyoming

1,485.89

21

Georgia

1,485.38

22

North Carolina

1,483.98

23

Indiana

1,480.12

24

Minnesota

1,475.73

25

Utah

1,473.63

26

Alaska

1,473.09

27

West Virginia

1,465.15

28

Rhode Island

1,464.35

29

Texas

1,463.70

30

Wisconsin

1,460.01

31

Oregon

1,459.64

32

Idaho

1,456.79

33

Alabama

1,454.98

34

Tennessee

1,446.63

35

Kentucky

1,446.53

36

Missouri

1,441.07

37

Kansas

1,439.17

38

Unknown

1,436.77

39

Oklahoma

1,423.04

40

Ohio

1,422.89

41

Louisiana

1,421.25

42

Mississippi

1,416.49

43

Arkansas

1,415.43

44

Iowa

1,412.23

45

Montana

1,407.08

46

Vermont

1,398.34

47

New Mexico

1,398.19

48

Maine

1,395.33

49

Nebraska

1,391.82

50

South Dakota

1,391.16

51

North Dakota

1,388.96

52

District of Columbia

1,321.04


States with the highest and lowest SSI benefits

The SSI benefits don’t vary much by location. The difference between the area with the highest average SSI benefit (Washington, D.C.) and the lowest average SSI benefit (North Dakota) is just $75.42 per month. The average monthly SSI benefit is worth between $500 and $700 in all states.

The low variability in benefit amounts is likely due to Supplemental Security Income working a bit differently than SSDI. In 2024, someone can only qualify for SSI benefits if their total income is $943 or less (that number is up from $914 in 2023). So a person with no income at all could qualify for the maximum SSI benefit of $943, but someone who’s earning $300 of monthly income from just about any other source could only qualify for an SSI benefit of $643.

Even with that maximum income requirement, it’s interesting to look at differences in SSI benefits because recipients are people who otherwise have very low income and little opportunity to earn more.

Average SSI benefit amount by state

Rank

State

Average SSI benefit

1

District of Columbia

637.52

2

Pennsylvania

631.22

3

Maryland

629.1

4

Minnesota

626.6

5

Ohio

625.24

6

Michigan

624.9

7

Washington

624.52

8

Delaware

621.89

9

Illinois

619.56

10

Indiana

615.55

11

Wisconsin

613.05

12

Nevada

612.35

13

Louisiana

611.54

14

West Virginia

610.45

15

Oregon

610.13

16

Connecticut

608.91

17

New York

608.38

18

Arkansas

605.75

19

Arizona

605.67

20

Oklahoma

605.51

21

Rhode Island

605.11

22

Massachusetts

604.27

23

Kentucky

603.5

24

Virginia

602.22

25

Kansas

602.02

26

Utah

599.43

27

Tennessee

599.07

28

Idaho

598.36

29

Florida

598.21

30

Georgia

597.73

31

Colorado

594.1

32

Missouri

593.27

33

Alabama

591.69

34

Iowa

591.64

35

North Carolina

589.16

36

South Carolina

588.41

37

Nebraska

586.18

38

Mississippi

586.1

39

Maine

585.11

40

Vermont

583.56

41

Texas

583.16

42

Wyoming

582.19

43

Hawaii

580.59

44

New Mexico

580.32

45

California

578.62

46

South Dakota

577.78

47

New Hampshire

577.42

48

Alaska

575.77

49

New Jersey

575.6

50

Montana

569.33

51

North Dakota

562.1


How to get help applying for disability benefits

The application for Social Security disability benefits can be long and complicated. To get the process started on the right foot, we’ve created this step-by-step guide to the disability benefits application.

While this guide is a good place to start, the biggest way most applicants can increase their chance of success is to work with a disability lawyer. Applying for disability may not seem like the job of a lawyer, but unfortunately the process is very technical and usually goes through the court system.

Three-quarters of people have their initial claim denied and need to appeal for a hearing in front of a judge. (Judges approved more than 50% of claims at this stage.) Government data shows that applicants with lawyers are three times more likely to win their claim.

Atticus can help you understand if a lawyer could help your claim. Our advice is always free and we can refer you to one of our vetted lawyers (who you don’t have to pay unless they win your case). Start with our 2-minute disability benefits quiz and our team will reach out to learn more about your situation.

See what benefits you qualify for instantly. Take our easy eligibility quiz.

Recommended Articles:

How Much Can I Make on SSDI or SSI in 2024?

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By Jackie Jakab

How Are SSDI Payments Calculated?

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By Jackie Jakab

See what you qualify for

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Photo of Derek Silva — Atticus Author

Derek Silva

Data Journalist and Content Lead

Derek is a writer and editor who has spent years covering disability benefits, taxes, and personal finances. He loves using data to tell stories, with his work being covered by Yahoo Finance, MSN, Business Insider, and CNBC, among others. Derek has previously worked for SmartAsset and Policygenius.
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