Can Current Massachusetts Social Security Beneficiaries Return to Work?While the number of people in New England and throughout the country receiving government disability benefits continues to rise and the funds decrease, some ask why more don't return to work. Is this feasible?
The New York Times reported in April 2011 that about 8.2 million people in the United States, or about one in 21, collected disabled worker benefits from the Social Security Disability Program in 2010. Ten years ago, the total was five million people. Why the increase?
- The baby boomer generation is aging. And along with age comes a host of infirmities.
- More people are claiming more back injuries and other musculoskeletal conditions now than then.
- Judges may feel more pressure to process cases than ten years ago.
- Some economists say the difficult job market prompts people to file claims as a kind of "safety net."
Whatever the reasons for the jump in the number of SSA disability claims, some feel that many people now on disability could be working. Is this true?
The Social Security Administration says no. This government agency feels that of all the current beneficiaries, fewer than 1% are expected to leave the program due to improved health. And, despite the 1999 Ticket to Work program, which helps beneficiaries get jobs and continue receiving benefits, not enough people could go back to work to make a difference in the disability trust fund.
The SSA disability program was intended for those who are physically or mentally incapable of holding jobs. And, assuming the program is accepting just that type of person, why do critics continue to insist on applying pressure on the SSA to cut spending? It is a matter of money, of course. With the SSA disability program slated to run out of funding as soon as 2017, some feel that cuts must be made.
Keefe Disability Law believes that those who truly deserve disability benefits should receive them. If you are a disability recipient and have questions about returning to work, please give us a call toll free at 888-904-6847.