Everyday People Matter

Numbers of Workers Collecting Disability Benefits Hits Record High in December

| Jan 21, 2013 | Applying for benefits

The number of American workers collecting Social Security Disability benefits hit record highs in December, even as the Social Security Disability program ran a deficit of close to $40 billion in 2012.

According to statistics published by the Social Security Administration, the Social Security Program ran a $47.8 billion deficit in 2012. The program brought in about $725.42 billion in cash, and paid $773.24 billion in benefits and overhead expenses.
In December 2012, the number of American workers collecting Social Security disability benefits hit 8,827,795. That was an increase from 8,805,353 workers in November.

Approximately 50% of the applicants who applied for benefits were approved. This was the highest approval percentage of any month in the 2012 calendar year. The average monthly pay award was $1130.34. The average award was $1184.92.

The non-partisan Congressional Budget Office attributed the increases to the aging Baby Boomer population, increase of women in the work force and an economy that cannot assimilate the disabled worker.

There was also an increase in the overall number of beneficiaries in the Social Security program. These numbers hit record highs of 56,758,185 people in December, an increase from 56,658,978 workers in November. These beneficiaries include retired workers, their dependents including spouses and children, as well as disabled workers and their dependent family members.

Under the law, a person who suffers an injury or medical condition that leaves him in a position where he cannot work anymore, may be eligible for Social Security disability benefits. However, it isn’t as simple as that. Merely getting a certificate from a doctor certifying that you are disabled does not automatically qualify you for benefits. You will need the expertise of a lawyer who can build your disability benefits claim for you so that your claim can be approved by the Social Security Administration.