Fascinating, Unusual Facts About the Social Security Disability System
Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) helps millions of Americans with disabilities get by, but the system remains largely misunderstood. Common misconceptions indicate that it’s easy to be approved for SSDI benefits and that most applicants are simply too lazy to work. This could not be further from the truth. The following are a few interesting things you may not know about SSDI and its beneficiaries:
Disability and Age
The public largely perceives disability as an age-based problem. However, while certain illnesses and conditions become more likely with age, problems often strike younger individuals as well. The SSA reports that one in four of today’s 20-year-olds will become disabled prior to reaching retirement age.
High Rejection Rates
Applicants need to jump through numerous hoops to be approved for disability, and many are ultimately denied. In fiscal year 2013, the allowance rate for Social Security disability was just 33 percent.
Low Benefit Payouts
The United States ranks 30th among the 34 Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) countries for disabled worker replacement benefit payouts. Many claimants receive less than $1,000 each month; the average monthly payment in 2016 was $1,166.
The Necessity of Disability Benefits
Most people who receive SSDI benefits are eager to continue to work, if possible. Unfortunately, severe impairments prevent the vast majority from earning more than a few thousand per year, which is clearly not enough to live on.
Types of Disabilities
Although physical disabilities are responsible for the majority of SSDI payouts, mental impairments play a greater role than most people realize. Mental health problems strike 31.8 percent of disability beneficiaries, with 4.2 percent suffering intellectual disabilities and the other 27.6 percent dealing with other issues (such as schizophrenia, depression, or post-traumatic stress disorder).
The facts outlined above simply scratch the surface when it comes to the complex and often confusing SSDI landscape. To learn more, contact Smith, Wallis and Scott, LLP.