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Almost 10 Million People on Disability

Posted on May 10, 2013

How many people in the US are on Social Security disability? The answer may surprise you. According to Investors Business Daily, the number as of late April 2013 was 8.9 million, with almost 80,000 individuals being taken onto the rolls in that month alone and 300,000 in the 2013 calendar year.

Here are some more statistics from the article:

  • For every 100 US citizens who hold a job, 6.5 are on disability (double the ratio from 20 years ago)
  • The total number of people on disability has increased sixfold since 1970
  • In 2012, the US spent $135 billion on disability benefits, dwarfing the amount paid in welfare and food stamps
  • Because disabled individuals are entitled to Medicare after two years on the rolls, they cost Medicare $80 billion in 2012
  • The average age at which benefits are awarded has dropped to around 49, from 51 in 1980

Why is the Social Security disability system under such enormous strain? Investors Business Daily speculates that the sluggish economic recovery is at fault, as well as a loosening of restrictions on the types of disabilities that can qualify a person for benefits (a large proportion of those being comprising mental, rather than physical, conditions).

Are you a northern California resident who is thinking about applying for Social Security disability benefits? Don't delay; contact the disability lawyers at the Ledgerwood Law Group (888-761-7383) for a free consultation today!

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Thomas Ledgerwood
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