Congress has only been in session for a few weeks. But within the span of those limited weeks, lawmakers have drummed up a great deal of controversy. One of the more controversial moves that the House has made involves a proposed rule that would dramatically affect Americans who receive Social Security Disability benefits now and those that may need to collect this kind of benefits in the future.
Specifically, the rule would make it effectively impossible for lawmakers in the future to transfer funding from the trust that governs Social Security survivors’ benefits and retirement benefits to the trust that governs disability benefits. If adopted, this rule would represent a significant shift in policy that would almost certainly leave the SSD program inadequately funded unless other measures aimed at keeping the trust solvent are passed.
At present, the National Priorities Project reports that the disability trust is only fully funded through 2016. After that time has passed, the trust would only be able to fund 81 percent of current benefits moving forward. This percentage could change for the worse if a significant number of new applicants seek to receive benefits.
Because the disability trust is so close to being inadequately funded, Congress will need to reallocate funding in favor of the trust before cuts are set to take place. If the proposed rule is adopted, funds could not be reallocated from the most easily accessible source, which is the trust that governs retirement and survivor’s benefits. If you are concerned with this approach to Social Security funding, do not hesitate to make your concerns known to your federal representatives.
Source: National Priorities Project, “House Rule Would Cut Social Security Disability Benefits,” Jasmine Tucker, Jan. 14, 2015