Seal of Dane County County of Dane
Aging and Disability Resource Center of Dane County

Disability Benefit Specialist Program

The Disability Benefit Specialist (DBS) provides confidential assistance at no charge to adults ages 18 to 59 with physical disability, development disability, mental health conditions and/or substance abuse disorders.

DBS provides counseling, advocacy, and technical assistance regarding:

  • Medicaid (Medical Assistance)
  • Social Security Disability Income (SSDI)
  • Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
  • Medicare
  • Prescription Drug Assistance
  • FoodShare
  • And more!

DBS does not assist with private health insurance, taxes, tax or financial advice, or housing assistance.

The DBS may also assist with disability applications and appeal procedures. They remain current on changes in public policy and laws related to disability benefits, and the services are confidential and free of charge.

If you are looking for referral options for children with disability, please visit our Transition Planning Resources page for more information.

Applying for Social Security Disability Options:

1.      Meet with an ADRC DBS who can help you complete the online Social Security Application. Please understand that the DBS are typically booking out for appointments and you will not be able to get in right away. Contact the Aging and Disability Resource Center (ADRC) at (608) 240-7400 or for further information.

2.      Call Social Security Administration at 1-866-770-2262 to set up an appointment. They may be able to get you in sooner than the DBS and this will set your application date, also known as your protective filing date. Your protective filing date is the day you call Social Security.

3.      Apply for Social Security Disability online. There is a tips packet that helps walk you through the online application. You do not have to complete it all in one sitting; you will be given a re-entry number and as long as you save this number you can go back into your saved application. Your protective filing date is the date you start your application and obtain a re-entry number.

Helpful Resources

Covering Wisconsin: (608) 261-1455

Capitol Consortium: 1-888-794-5556

Medigap Helpline: 800-242-1060 

Prescription Drug Helpline (under age 60): 800-926-4862 

Prescription Drug Helpline (over age 60): 855-67 PART D or 855-677-2783

Wisconsin State Health Insurance and Assistance Program: