More Americans are receiving Social Security disability benefits today than ever before. Despite some propaganda you may have heard, few of the recipients obtain these benefits fraudulently. Qualifying for disability benefits is difficult (that’s why you need help from an experienced disability attorney), and the process has a number of safeguards in place to prevent fraud. Changing demographics, including more women in the workforce and the aging of baby boomers, account for most of the 21st-century rise in the number of benefit recipients. And demographics don’t tell the full story. Other factors are involved, and none of them include fraud.
1. The 1984 Social Security Disability Benefits Reform Act expanded eligibility criteria so that many previously ineligible injured workers became eligible. The legislation was adopted unanimously by both houses of Congress and signed by President Reagan.
2. While many jobs require workers to perform in difficult and dangerous work environments, new technology has also created more “sit-at-a-desk-all-day” jobs, sedentary work that contributes to poor health conditions such as back trouble, obesity, and carpal tunnel syndrome.
3. Some suggest that Medicare eligibility is a factor in the growth of the disability rolls; disability insurance recipients qualify for Medicare after two years. With fewer employers providing health insurance and rising insurance costs, accessibility to health insurance is a factor in many decisions to claim disability insurance. It’s still uncertain whether the Affordable Care Act will ease the financial pressure on the disability insurance program.
4. The recession that began in 2007-2008 surely added incrementally to the rising number of disability benefit recipients, but such applications are far more likely to be denied due to applicant ineligibility.
If you are disabled and unable to work, if your disability application was denied, or if you are in any stage of the application process, seek the counsel of an experienced disability attorney who can help you understand how Social Security makes decisions regarding disability. A good Social Security disability lawyer can also help you compile the evidence you need and meet with the experts who can help you receive benefits. It can be a lengthy process, so if you need disability benefits, get started today and contact an experienced Social Security disability attorney immediately.