Last month, the new session of the House of Representatives passed a bill that will affect the way that the Social Security disability program will be funded. Under the new changes, the fund will no longer be replenished by tax funds from the Social Security retirement fund. The transfer of tax money between these two funds has kept both programs functioning for years.
According to a recent article from Media Matters For America , Texas' own Representative Sam Johnson and Senator Rand Paul are leading the charge on these changes and continue to perpetuate a deep-seated mistrust of SSD beneficiaries among Republicans. The congressmen cite fraud prevention as the inspiration for the bill and insist that countless citizens who are benefiting from disability insurance are not actually suffering from truly debilitating conditions.
However, as a recent report from the Los Angeles Times points out , applying for and receiving SSD benefits is, in fact, a highly regulated and rigorous process.
They cited the following statistics on the SSD applications from 2013:
- Slightly more than a 25% of SSD applicants are initially accepted
- Only about 13% more applicants are accepted after appeals
- A total of roughly 41% of SSD applicants actually receive money
Media Matters for America goes on to mention a nonpartisan Government Accountability Office investigation that estimated that only 0.4% of SSD beneficiaries had likely committed fraud to get their benefits.
The Future of Social Security Disability Benefits
It is difficult to forecast how SSD benefits will change in the coming few years now that this adjustment has taken place, but predictions are not hopeful. The Los Angeles Times estimates that, as soon as next year, "11 million beneficiaries would have to be cut 20%."
At Coats & Todd, we know firsthand just how essential the Social Security disability program is in retaining the quality of life and dignity of so many disabled American workers. Even if securing this insurance for our clients becomes more difficult in the months to come, we will continue to tirelessly dedicate our time and resources to making sure they receive the support they need.
If you or a loved one are struggling to receive the benefits you need from the Social Security disability program, then contact us to speak with a dedicated Dallas SSD attorney at our firm today.