Report Suggests SSDI Numbers Have Leveled, May Decline

Over the last few years, if you have been following the news about Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI), you may have heard the term “crisis” thrown around by the media, as the number of people receiving benefits mounted. Photo of people reviewing paperwork

However, a recent report by the Social Security’s Technical Panel indicates that the so-called “crisis” may be ending. Michael Hiltzik, a columnist for the Los Angeles Times, wrote about the report, saying it validates what many advocates have been claiming for a while: that the increase in SSDI numbers had a lot to do with demographics and changes in legislation.

“[T]he previous increase in disability rolls had nothing to do with malingerers and layabouts, as conservatives loved to claim,” Hiltzik wrote. “[It] had everything to do with America’s demographics, the economy and changes in the disability program rules approved by Congress in the 1980s.”

According to Hiltzik, the reality is that SSDI rolls have leveled off and are expected to show their first year-over-year decline in the next year (for the first time in over 30 years). “The findings should help Congress deal properly with the real crisis facing the disability program, which is that its trust fund is likely to run out next year,” Hiltzik noted.

The writer mentioned how changes to language in SSDI legislation during the 1980s began to allow more people with psychological and neurological impairments, rather than just musculoskeletal conditions, apply for and receive benefits, resulting in increased rolls.

Additionally, he noted how the Baby Boomer population began to hit its peak disability years in the mid-1990s and how more women entered the workforce, allowing for a larger pool of potential beneficiaries.

If You Want a Successful SSDI Claim, It May Be In Your Best Interest to Work with Our Tulsa Disability Attorneys

It will be interesting to see if the data that has been released will be used during the upcoming SSDI funding debate that is expected to take place. Most experts understood that changes in the population and to rules would result in an increased number of SSDI recipients. However, many were also aware that the numbers would eventually level-off. Any claims that the system is spiraling out of control that you may hear in the future will probably be false.

SSDI is not an entitlement—you must have paid into the system and have earned work credits in order to obtain benefits. Talk to our Tulsa disability attorneys about your eligibility.

By working with our Tulsa Social Security attorney, you may be able to improve your chances of success when it comes to an SSDI application or appeal.

Troutman & Troutman, P.C. – Tulsa Social Security disability attorneys


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