Last year, the Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) program was saved from immediate destruction when federal lawmakers gave the Ok for a temporary patch to keep the program going without going bankrupt. That was big news for the 11 million Americans currently on disability, who were facing a 20 percent reduction in their benefits.
But that patch, which involved moving around funding from the Social Security retirement program, is only going to last us through 2022. Before then, there will undoubtedly be much debate about the future of the program, how much we should continue to dole out in benefits and how we’re going to pay its current $150-billion annual price tag. Although it’s not the largest program intended to help subsidize those who are struggling financially, it’s one that receives the lion’s share of the criticism. Part of the problem is that most people don’t understand the rigorous and lengthy process that claimants must endure to prove their disability and also to establish a long enough work history. They don’t understand it’s a system that people had to have paid into via their federal taxes for many years before a claim can be made. And they don’t understand that the process is so complex and demanding, claimants need an SSDI lawyer to help them navigate it effectively.
The program was created to help workers who have become physically or mentally disabled, as well as their families, stay afloat financially. Although critics say the program is far too generous, you must keep in mind that the average benefits usually only work out to about $1,165 monthly. That’s about $14,000 a year. Continue reading