There has been a lot of discussion surrounding the status of the Disability Insurance Trust Fund that provides beneficiaries of the Social Security Disability Insurance program with the benefits that they need. Specifically, budget experts are concerned that the amount of money being put into the fund can’t keep up with the amount being paid out.
These budget experts have even made predictions that the funds could run out as early as 2016. A driving force behind this concern has been the increase in disability applications over the past decade or so, but is that still an issue?
Recent data from the Social Security Administration shows that the number of recipients has leveled off over the past couple of years and the number of applicants has decreased.
The number of recipients hit a peak around March 2013, with 10,939,936. Since then, the number has wavered a bit, but has remained around that number. The most recent tally came in at 10,981,423 this March.
As for the number of applicants, they have decreased since 2010. That year started off with just over 700,000 applications in the first quarter. Of course, that number has also wavered slightly, but has decreased to below 600,000 by the end of 2013. The number of awards in the same time has proportionately decreased as well, falling from a total of just under 300,000 to approximately 200,000 in the same period mentioned above.
We could only speculate as to why the numbers are decreasing, but we won’t. What would benefit those with a disability most, is the assurance that their application is handled in the most efficient, error-free manner. That is something that a Knoxville attorney can provide.
Source: The Wall Street Journal, “Has Social Security Disability Enrollment Hit Plateau?” Damian Paletta and Josh Zumbrun, April 16, 2014