Since there has been no movement toward fixing the impending budget shortfall facing the Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) program, experts are still predicting funding for the program will run out in late 2016, and this will mean that the United States Social Security Administration (SSA) only has enough money to pay 80 percent of all disability benefits claims.
Based upon the way in which the system works, there will be about nine million Social Security Disability Insurance benefits recipients who will be facing a 20 percent reduction in benefits late next year. In order to prevent this from happening, several think tanks and public policy organizations have been making suggestions as to how Congress can avert the budget shortfall and help make sure the this same thing does not happen again in the future.
According to a recent news article from the Fiscal Times, a bipartisan policy group has come up with eight things they believe will fix the problem now and in the future. The first thing that must be done is to avoid the Social Security Disability Insurance program from going insolvent at all costs and then work on finding a long-term solution later.
The policy group also stressed that it is important to make no changes in the amount of money current Social Security disability beneficiaries are receiving. This means avoiding the 80 percent cut in benefits.
The third suggestion deals with the need for more “ticket to work” programs and greater flexibility in how they are run. Clients regularly ask Boston disability attorneys if they should try to go back to work. Contrary to what many people believe, most disability benefits recipients would much rather be working than sitting at home. The problem is that they can only manage to work in a very limited capacity in many cases. They know that if they try to go back to work, they will never be able to earn as much as they were making prior to becoming disabled. The fear is that if they start to go back to work part time in a limited capacity, Social Security Administration will determine they are no longer disabled and terminate any future benefits.
The next few suggestions and further developments on the programs are all related to the concept of giving people a means to go back to work in some limited capacity without having to fear they will lose their benefits or having to worry about Social Security Administration reexamining the disability claims status of the beneficiaries, which might result in a loss of benefits.
Another suggestion the bipartisan agency came up with was to crack on down on disability benefits fraud. While this is important, and benefits fraud does actually happen, it really accounts for very little in terms of shortfalls in the agency budget. The vast majority of claimants collecting Social Security disability benefits are genuinely disabled and very much in need of benefits to take care of themselves and their families.
If you or a loved one is seeking Social Security Disability Insurance benefits in Boston, call for a free and confidential appointment at (617) 777-7777.
8 Ideas for Saving Social Security Disability Insurance, October 12, 2015, The Fiscal Times, by Eric Pianin
More Blog Entries:
Rand Paul Says Many Receiving SSDI Benefits Gaming System, Jan. 27, 2015, Boston Social Security Disability Insurance Lawyer Blog