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Final Report Released: Employment, Earnings, and Primary Impairments Among Benefits of Social Security Disability Programs

by User Not Found | Jan 07, 2014

By: David R. Mann, Arif Mamun, and Jeffrey Hemmeter 

The two major disability support programs administered by the Social Security Administration (SSA)—Disability Insurance (DI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI)—have experienced substantial growth in recent decades. The number of DI disabled worker beneficiaries has grown from 2.9 million in 1980 to 8.8 million in December 2012, and the number of working-age SSI recipients has increased from 1.5 million at the start of the program in January 1974 to about 4.9 million in December 2012 (Stapleton and Wittenburg 2011; SSA 2013a). This rapid growth in program beneficiaries has generated strong policy interest in understanding beneficiary employment patterns and, ultimately, decreasing program growth by helping some beneficiaries to return to work and earn enough to decrease or eliminate their benefit payment. 

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Work on this study was made possible by the Individual Characteristics Employment Policy and Measurement Rehabilitation Research and Training Center, which is funded by the U.S. Department of Education, National Institute for Disability and Rehabilitation Research, under cooperative agreement H133B100011. The contents of this paper do not necessarily represent the policy of the Department of Education, the Social Security Administration, or any other federal agency (Edgar, 75.620 (b)). 


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