For residents of Michigan, now sickened or injured and unable to work, Social Security Disability Insurance may be all that is left to keep them out of poverty. For all the hype, instances of abuse of the system are quite rare and can be easily remedied by other means than gutting the entire system.
Receiving disability benefits through the Social Security program is a difficult process, and not all applications are approved. Approval of almost every sort of claim has become more stringent in recent years and requires objective evidence of injury or illness.
Some conditions such as alcoholism and drug abuse will not be considered an illness under current definitions that would make one eligible for benefits. And standards for receiving benefits have been made more difficult for medical conditions such as diabetes, obesity, mental retardation and HIV related syndromes.
It must be said that current circumstances has not made the filing of claims impossible. However, it may mean that applicants should seek advice in the filing of claims. Because of difficulties presented in making such claims, the help of an attorney experienced in the area of Social Security Disability would be a good place to start for guidance.
If there has been an increase in claims during recent years, this is due in great part to more women and elderly individuals joining the workforce. We have more people attempting to enter the workforce right now than probably anytime in history, and this is going to make a difference in the number of claims filed. Yet those individuals forced out of the workplace due to illness or injuries are in as great of need of Social Security Disability benefits as ever.
Source: USA Today, "Opposing view: Disability benefits remain a vital lifeline," by Charles Martin, Feb. 2, 2012