The Social Security Disability Insurance Program

Source: John G. Kilgour, Compensation & Benefits Review, Vol. 46 no. 4, July/August 2014
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From the abstract:
The Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) was added to Social Security in the 1950s and has grown into a large and complex institution in its own right that interacts with several other government and employer-provided benefit programs. It provides income replacement to the 8.9 million disabled workers and their families. SSDI is currently funded by a 1.8% Federal Insurance Contributions Act payroll tax on earned income up to $117,000 per year (indexed). That has not been enough, and the Disability Insurance (DI) trust fund will be depleted in 2016. There are indications that the solution is at hand. A proposal within the Office of the Chief Actuary of the Social Security Administration would shunt money from the Old Age and Survivors Insurance to the DI trust funds, thus postponing the “day of reckoning” for the combined Old Age, Survivors, and Disability Insurance trust funds to 2033. It is imperative that Congress address this problem soon. The longer we wait, the harder it will be.