2008 Annual Report of the SSI Program

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D. HISTORICAL REDETERMINATION AND CONTINUING DISABILITY REVIEW DATA
1. Redeterminations
Redeterminations are reviews of all of the nonmedical factors of eligibility to determine whether a recipi­ent is still eligible for SSI and still receiving the correct payment amount. There are two types of redeter­minations: scheduled and unscheduled. Except for certain institutionalized individuals, all recipients are periodically scheduled for a redetermination. Every year SSA schedules for redetermination the cases most likely to have payment error, but even the cases unlikely to have payment error are scheduled for review at least once every 6 years. Unscheduled redeterminations are completed on an as needed basis when recipients report, or we discover, certain changes in circumstances that could affect the continuing SSI payment amount. The numbers of redeterminations completed are subject to some year-to-year fluctu­ation because of variation in the numbers of unscheduled redeterminations completed and in the numbers of scheduled redeterminations that were completed during the fiscal year due to administrative resource limitations and the impact of other workload requirements on the field offices. When redeterminations cannot be completed in the fiscal year scheduled, they are carried over into the next fiscal year . Table V.D1 provides historical data on numbers of redeterminations completed by fiscal year.
 
Table V.D1.—SSI Redeterminations Completed, Fiscal Years 1986‑2007
[In thousands]
Number of
redeterminations
1 1,900
2 1,597
31,071
31,039
1 Decrease in number of redeterminations completed in fiscal year 1994 due to low-error profile redeterminations not being completed from January through September 1994.
2 Effective fiscal year 1995, approximately 200,000 fewer rede­terminations were selected annually due to a change from a 3‑year to a 6‑year redetermination cycle for low-error profile cases.
3 Fewer redeterminations were selected in fiscal years 2005- 2007 due to limitations on administrative funding.
During periods between scheduled redeterminations, SSA uses the limited issue process to detect situa­tions that have the potential to affect the continuing eligibility of SSI recipients and SSI payment amounts. SSA conducts periodic computer matches between its own systems and the systems of other Federal and State agencies to determine if the income and resources information on SSI recipients’ records is in con­flict with data obtained from the other systems. Matches detecting conflicting information usually result in the posting of an indicator to the Supplemental Security Record of the SSI recipient. The limited issue case is then selected for a field office review of the issue for which the indicator was posted. In fiscal year 2007, SSA released over 328,000 limited issue cases for development by field offices. The field offices processed over 345,000 limited issue cases.1
2. Continuing Disability Reviews
Following enactment of the Social Security Disability Amendments of 1980, section 221(i) of the Social Security Act generally requires SSA to review the continuing eligibility of title II disabled beneficiaries at least every 3 years. A similar requirement was not put in place at that time for disabled title XVI recipi­ents. Although the Committee on Finance of the Senate stated in its report on this legislation that the same continuing disability review (CDR) procedures should be applied with respect to both the title II and title XVI programs, title XVI was not amended to accomplish this. Section 1614(a)(4) of the Act gives SSA discretionary authority to conduct periodic CDRs on SSI recipients. On September 28, 1994, SSA issued a Federal Register notice that periodic SSI CDRs would begin on October 1, 1994. In 1994 and again in 1996 legislation was enacted adding some mandates for the performance of CDRs under the SSI program.
Public Law 103-296 specified that during each of fiscal years 1996, 1997, and 1998, SSA was required to conduct CDRs on a minimum of 100,000 SSI recipients. In addition, during the same period, SSA was required to redetermine the SSI eligibility of at least one-third of all SSI child recipients who reached age 18 after April 1995 during the 1-year period following attainment of age 18. Such redeterminations for persons turning age 18 could count toward the 100,000 CDR requirement.
Public Law 104-193 extended the requirement of redetermination of SSI eligibility to all SSI child recipi­ents who reach age 18, with such redetermination being based on the adult eligibility criteria. This law also added the requirement that a CDR be performed:
Not later than 12 months after birth for recipients whose low birth weight is a contributing factor material to the determination of their disability unless the Commissioner determines that the impair­ment is not expected to improve within 12 months of the child’s birth.
Public Law 105-33 gave SSA some additional flexibility in the scheduling of these categories of CDRs.
In order to handle the large CDR workload mandated under these various provisions, SSA developed, beginning in 1993, a process by which certain title II cases scheduled for a CDR would be screened using the results of a profiling process which included a mailer interview for some cases. In 1996 the profiling process was extended to title XVI adults who were scheduled for a CDR. The screening process resulted in the deferral of full medical reviews for 103,119 cases for which a scheduled title XVI CDR was pro­cessed in fiscal year 2007.
For cases involving individuals who receive both title II and title XVI benefits, CDRs are typically initi­ated as title II CDRs with the results of the review affecting eligibility for benefits under both programs. Tables V.D2 and V.D3 present the latest available summary of results2 on CDRs of title XVI recipients performed under titles II and XVI since 1993. These tables include only cases for which a full medical review was conducted. In particular they do not include:
Miscellaneous other CDRs processed by the State Disability Determination Services but not as part of the normal CDR scheduling process (such as voluntary and third-party reports of medical improve­ment, post-transplant end-stage renal disease cases, and vocational rehabilitation reports).
In contrast with the allowance data presented in section V.C, the CDR data is tabulated on a cohort basis by the date of initial decision.
 
Table V.D2.—SSI Disabled Adult Reviews: Disposition 1 of Continuing Disability Medical Reviews by Fiscal Year of
Initial Decision and Level of Decision
Fiscal year of
initial DDS
decision
Total initial
DDS decisions
 
 
Table V.D2.—SSI Disabled Adult Reviews: Disposition 1 of Continuing Disability Medical Reviews by Fiscal Year of
Initial Decision and Level of Decision (Cont.)
Fiscal year of
initial DDS
decision
Appeals to beyond
reconsideration
 
 
Table V.D2.—SSI Disabled Adult Reviews: Disposition 1 of Continuing Disability Medical Reviews by Fiscal Year of
Initial Decision and Level of Decision (Cont.)
Fiscal year of
initial DDS
decision
Total initial
decisions
Cessations
pending an
appeal decision
Cessations
with no
appeal pending
Cessations
pending an
appeal decision
Cessations
with no
appeal pending
1 Data reflect results as of February 2008. The ultimate numbers of continuations and cessations are subject to change until all appeals are final.
2Percentage of decisions at this level.
3Percentage of cessations at this level appealed to next level.
4The status and disposition of cases in the Federal courts are not reflected here. However, for cases remanded by the courts to SSA, the status and disposi­tion at ODAR are included. The excluded experience in the Federal courts has a minimal impact on the number of continuations.
5Number of persons appealing beyond the reconsideration level.
6Less than 0.05 percent.
 
Table V.D3.—SSI Disabled Child Reviews: Disposition 1 of Continuing Disability Medical Reviews by Fiscal Year of
Initial Decision and Level of Decision
Fiscal year of
initial DDS
decision
Total initial
DDS decisions
 
 
Table V.D3.—SSI Disabled Child Reviews: Disposition 1 of Continuing Disability Medical Reviews by Fiscal Year of
Initial Decision and Level of Decision (Cont.)
Fiscal year of initial DDS decision
Appeals to beyond
reconsideration