Monthly Archives: May 2012

Tough Times, Baby Boomers Lead to Disability Benefits Growth

A common recent criticism of disability benefits has targeted the rapid growth in the numbers of disability beneficiaries. There is no denying this fact. For most of the existence of disability benefits, the number of beneficiaries was around five million. We passed that number in 1995 and have not looked back. In 2005, there were around eight million beneficiaries, and we are currently over 10 million. Many critics suggest that this means something is wrong with the system, that fraud and abuse is rampant, but there are other, factually supported reasons why the numbers have grown. Demographic and economic reasons The first reason explaining the growth is demographic trends. As Baby Boomers age, they are more likely to suffer a disability that prevents them from working. Increased health risks is just an unfortunate part of getting older. Additionally, women and minorities are in the workforce these days more than at…
Read More »

Posted in Benefits, Disability, Social Security | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Do Disability Benefits Help the Homeless Enough?

Disability benefits help millions of disabled Americans who are unable to work, but it turns out that they may not be doing all that they can. The National Law Center on Homelessness & Poverty (“NLCHP”) spent several months reviewing the numbers behind homeless Americans and their access to disability benefits and healthcare. The disability benefits system, at least the way it functions now, may actually be hindering the improvement of the lives of homeless Americans, the NLCHP found. The problem is that homeless Americans have trouble getting SSI or SSDI benefits in the first place. The NLCHP found that up to 40 percent of them are able to apply for such benefits, but only 14 percent of them actually end up receiving them, and access to healthcare may be the reason why. At homeless shelters, most of the medical staff is non-doctors – nurse practitioners or physician’s assistants. Their medical…
Read More »

Posted in Disability, Social Security | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

What Does a Typical SSDI Applicant Face?

Despite the occasional stories of Social Security benefits fraud in the news, Social Security is already fairly well run (see Wednesday’s post) and is designed to avoid fraudulent payouts by a simple measure – it is not easy to receive disability benefits. The impression many get from the cases of fraud in the news is that people easily apply for and start receiving benefits and then maintain their scheme over many years. There is no doubt that these cases do occasionally happen, and Social Security must aggressively prosecute them, but the best way to view the system in the big picture is to consider how a typical applicant deals with it. The struggle to obtain disability benefits To qualify for SSDI benefits, you must have worked long enough to pay into the system (SSDI benefits are a form of insurance); as such, disabled workers receiving SSDI have actually earned their…
Read More »

Posted in Benefits, Evaluation, Social Security | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Despite What Some Think, Social Security is Run Efficiently

On Monday, we mentioned how the dramatic cases of Social Security fraud tend to make people think that the system is filled with abuses and wasteful spending. There will always be criminals and cases of fraud. Even Social Security’s biggest proponents are working to root out these problems, but thinking that they represent the whole system overlooks some key facts. Today we discuss how efficient Social Security actually is. If you have questions regarding eligibility for disability benefits, more information is available from a Tulsa SSI law firm. The efficiency of Social Security In terms of administrative costs, Social Security is run extremely efficiently. In the 1950s and 1960s, administrative costs ran at about two percent of Social Security’s payouts, and much of those costs was due to the disability benefits program. In 1959, for example, 10.3 percent of the disability benefits program’s spending went towards administrative costs. This is…
Read More »

Posted in Benefits, Disability, Social Security | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment