We are all painfully familiar with the budget battles Congress wages regularly with the President, and most recently the resulting budget sequestration of 2013 that really put a number of government programs and employees in a bind.
Well, something similar is going on now with the Social Security disability program.
The SSA program in general is financed through the Federal Insurance Contributions Act tax, which you can see as a deduction on your paycheck. Once benefits have been paid, any excess is deposited in the Social Security Trust Fund.
The problem is that the SSA’s disability portion of the Fund is running out of money and, if lawmakers don’t act soon, its recipients will experience severe reductions in their monetary benefits starting in late 2016 – by as much as 19 percent.
In the past, money has been reallocated from the retirement portion of the Fund to the disability portion. Today though, Congress is resisting that move by demanding reform in the way the SSA’s disability program operates, e.g. reductions in disability benefits and making the requirements to qualify for it more difficult to meet.
Overall, things will only get worse from here on apparently, with big impacts on Medicare and retirees as well if Congress doesn’t act. The SSA has a nice summary of the situation on its website, located here.
The problem is that less and less money per capita has been going into the fund as the population ages and begins drawing benefits while there are less people per capita contributing to it, thus the Fund is, in effect, shrinking.
If you or your child have been denied disability benefits or suffer from a severe impairment that is expected to last more than twelve months and that prevents you from doing any of your past or other work or is causing developmental delay, please contact our office nearest to you to set up a free consultation appointment to discuss your situation.