The last safety net for injured workers, Social Security, is now facing severe economic challenges ahead. At a recent hearing before the US House Ways and Means Committee testimony was presented that the system is now at a critical crossroad because of a surge in disability applications complicated by an increasing administrative backlog.
Beth Bates, testified on behalf of the Consortium for Citizens with Disabilities, “...The wave of new claims is having a very significant impact at the state Disability Determination Services (DDSs) that will eventually affect the hearing level. At the DDS levels (initial and reconsideration), the number of new applications, applications waiting for a decision, and processing times are all on the rise. In fiscal year (FY) 2009, SSA received 385,000 new claims, an increase of nearly 15% since the end of FY 2008. Even more worrisome is the growing backlog of pending initial claims at the DDSs, i.e., those waiting for a decision, up nearly 40% since the end of FY 2008.”
Click here for the Subcommittee on Social Security Chairman Tanner Announces a Hearing on Clearing the Disability Claims Backlogs: The Social Security Administration’s Progress and New Challenges Arising From the Recession