What is the future of the SSD benefits program?

Many people in Knoxville, Tennessee, are either recipients of or applicants for Social Security disability benefits. The financial assistance such people receive is crucial for their everyday lives. In recent times, however, many people have come across a number of news reports that discuss the worrisome state of the Social Security Disability Insurance program. Considering that so many people are dependent to a great extent on SSD benefits, understanding these concerns is important.

The first and foremost concern that is plaguing the SSD benefits program is shortage of funds. According to current estimates, the SSDI trust fund is expected to run out by the end of 2016. Over the past few weeks, people have expressed various policy opinions, and according to reports, it finally seems that the Congress may drop a lifeline to continue the financially struggling SSDI program.

The plan, as proposed by the Obama administration, would require a transfer of funds from the Old Age and Survivor Insurance program, also known as OASI, to the SSDI program such that both funds can be sustained until 2033. At present, 5.3 percent of wages go into the OASI fund and 0.9 percent into the SSDI fund. The plan does not require an increase in taxes as many people would have thought; instead, a small fraction of the amount that goes into OASI would instead go to the SSDI fund.

With so much apprehension looming over the SSD benefits program, many applicants and recipients of SSD benefits may experience a number of difficulties obtaining their benefits. Since these difficulties can affect the normal everyday lives of already disabled people, it may be a wise decision to seek a lawyer’s advice for resolving any possible issue, such as denials or appeals, arising from an SSD benefits claim.

Source: The Fiscal Times, “Congress May Throw Social Security Disability Insurance a Lifeline,” Eric Pianin, Feb. 26, 2015