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Social Security Disability Program Turns 60

While the United States Social Security disability program has become somewhat of a partisan issue in recent years, it once had a broad base of support from both sides of the aisle.  This was certainly true when it was created, and the enabling act was signed into law by President Dwight D. Eisenhower in 1956.  When it was first created, there was a six-month waiting period to get benefits, there were no benefits to children or spouses, and the program was only available to adults 50 years of age and older.

stopwatchOver the past several decades, there have been a lot of changes to the program.  Formally, there were two separate programs created.  One is called the Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) program, and the other is the Supplemental Security Income (SSI) program.  The SSDI program is the larger of the two programs and is designed to pay benefits to working Americans who have become disabled and can no longer work and take care of themselves and their families.

There has also been a program created were a person who is disabled for a period of two years and receiving SSDI benefits will become available for Medicare, which is usually reserved for senior citizens as part of the Old Age and Retirement benefits program.  It should be noted that age requirement of being 50 or older to collect SSDI benefits has long been eliminated making adults of any age eligible depending upon their work history.  As of this year, there are roughly 11 million disabled Americans receiving benefits under these programs run by the Social Security Administration (SSA), as discussed in a recent look at the history of Social Security disability programs featured in the Las Cruces Sun-News.

While many people do not think they are at a significant risk for suffering a disability that will prevent them for being able to work, statistics show that a worker who is at least 20 years old has a 25 percent chance of suffering a disability before reaching the age of retirement.  As our Boston Social Security disability benefits lawyers have seen, there is no typical look to a disability client.  Anyone from any social status or ethic background can be struck with a disability at any time during their working life and the results can be equally devastating regardless of who they are and where they came from.

However, just because the program exists and provides benefits to millions of Americans does not mean it will be easy to get an award of benefits or that the process will be fair.  The SSA often makes it very difficult to get benefits, because the agency is constantly running out of money, and paying less in claims is one way to save money.  For that reason, the best thing you can do is to make sure you have an experienced disability benefits attorney on your side who will help fight for your right to a full and appropriate disability benefits award.

If you or a loved one is seeking Social Security Disability Insurance in Boston, call for a free and confidential appointment at 1-888-367-2900.

Additional Resources:

Social Security has been offering disability benefits 60 years, October 14, 2016, By Ray Vigil, Las Cruces Sun-News

More Bog Entries:

Social Security Disability Judges Allegedly Used Racial and Sexual Terms on Claimants’ Applications, July 22, 2016, Boston SSDI Lawyer Blog