While many people rely on the Social Security Disability Insurance Program to ensure that they can continue to live comfortably if injured, others realize the importance of also purchasing short and/or long term disability insurance.
Our California readers, along with those in other parts of the country, should keep a close watch on any changes that could be made to the Social Security Disability Insurance Program in the near future.
According to recent reports, the Social Security Administration is finally beginning to tighten its grip on the administrative law judges that are staffed with the responsibility of awarding benefits. In short, they want to make sure that all disability benefits are awarded in a consistent manner and that fraud is kicked to the curb for good.
Over the past few years, SSDI payments have skyrocketed. This is due in large part to the economic downturn, along with the fact that some judges continue to award benefits when they should not be doing so. Over the past six years, the number of people collecting SSDI has increased 20 percent to approximately 12 million people. This works out to an annual budget of $135 billion. If things keep up at this pace, the current reserves will run out in 2016.
To protect against the potential of more changes down the road, consumers should strongly consider purchasing individual disability insurance, especially if they do not receive coverage through their employer. With this type of policy in place, a more secure future, in the event of a disability, is guaranteed.
Source: WV MetroNews, “Government tries to clean up disability program” Hoppy Kercheval, Dec. 30, 2013