What Trump’s Proposed Cuts Mean For Social Security Benefits

The Trump administration has proposed new rules regarding Social Security disability benefits. Currently, over 16 million adults and children receive these benefits, so the new proposals have the potential to impact many people. 

The new rules would put a “continuing disability review” in place. This would require those receiving benefits to turn in paperwork more frequently to prove their disabilities, and it would also increase the number of cases getting deeper checks of their paperwork. 

As well as making the process more lengthy and drawn out—something which is already a problem for many who suffer from disabilities across the nation—it also means that there would be a chance that more people would be denied benefits who should actually be receiving them. The proposed rules could potentially end benefits for tens of thousands of people. 

However, administration officials are adamant that this plan would only help to ensure that those who are genuinely entitled are going to get the benefits, and they claim that genuine sufferers will be unaffected.

It is not yet clear just how many people will be affected by this new process, which makes it all the more worrying for the 16 million Americans who are currently claiming disability benefits. 

However, the Social Security Agency has said that they expect they will have to conduct 4.4 million more continuing disability reviews over a space of ten years should the rules come into effect. That increases the SSA’s workload by quite a bit, which would likely result in an even longer wait time for those waiting to be approved for Social Security benefits.

These reviews are estimated to add around $1.6 billion in administrative costs too, so it’s not just time that is going to be stretched thin. However, the SSA says they expect to save around $2.8 billion in benefits from those who will no longer be able to successfully claim benefits as a result of this process. 

If you’re filing for Social Security benefits or if your claim has been wrongfully denied, you can get help by talking to a Social Security attorney. An experienced attorney can help you successfully navigate the process of filing your claim so you can receive the benefits you deserve. 

There are two main benefits that are offered to those living with a disability: Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI). 

The SSI is primarily for those who are low-income and have no work history. The maximum payout is $783 a month. The SSDI, however, is for workers who become disabled, and the payment amount depends largely on past earnings. 

To qualify for either of these, you have to prove that you have a long-term disability that prevents you from working. The new rules would make the initial approval process and the process of continuing to receive benefits more difficult for claimants, and it would likely become more difficult to be approved for continuing benefits. 

New  proposals could be up for approval as soon as January 31, but Congressional Democrats have requested that date be pushed to March 16. 

Chris Turn

Chris Turn is the pseudonym of a journalist and writer who has published short stories, essays, and criticism in the Los Angeles Times, the Globe and Mail, the Toronto Star, and the New York Times. Her most recent book, a novel, is The Summoning (The HarperCollins Canada, 2014). She lives with her husband in Toronto.

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