Annual Statistical Report on the Social Security Disability Insurance Program, 2011
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The original version of this report contained errors in the NOTES appearing under Tables 28–30. The correct NOTES now appear in this report.
Table 30 in the original print and web versions of this report contained errors. All the data in the "Families receiving maximum benefit" row for Number and Percent have been replaced.
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Size and Scope of the Social Security Disability Program
- Disability benefits were paid to over 9.8 million people.
- Awards to disabled workers (998,980) accounted for over 89 percent of awards to all disabled beneficiaries (1,114,060).
- In December, payments to disabled beneficiaries totaled about $10.4 billion.
- Benefits were terminated for 653,877 disabled workers.
- Supplemental Security Income payments were another source of income for about 1 out of 6 disabled beneficiaries.
Profile of Disabled-Worker Beneficiaries
- Workers accounted for the largest share of disabled beneficiaries (87.5 percent).
- Average age was 53.
- Men represented under 53 percent.
- Mental disorders was the diagnosis for about a third.
- Average monthly benefit received was $1,110.50.
- Supplemental Security Income payments were another source of income for about 1 out of 8.
Since 1956, the Social Security program has provided cash benefits to people with disabilities. This annual report provides program and demographic information about the people who receive those benefits. The basic topics covered are
- beneficiaries in current-payment status;
- workers' compensation and public disability benefits;
- benefits awarded, withheld, and terminated;
- disabled workers who have returned to work;
- outcomes of applications for disability benefits; and
- disabled beneficiaries receiving Social Security, Supplemental Security Income, or both.
Kia Masseaux managed the preparation of the data in this report. Art Kahn, Kia Masseaux, Clark Pickett, and Boris Shargorodsky wrote the programs to process the data and produce the statistical tables. Kevin Kulzer wrote data specifications. Kevin Kulzer, Hazel Jenkins, and Kia Masseaux validated the data. Staff of the Division of Information Resources edited the report and prepared the print and web versions for publication.
Your suggestions and comments on this report are welcome and should be directed to Kia Masseaux at 410-965-0090 or email@example.com. Contact information is also provided on each table.
Manuel de la Puente
Associate Commissioner for Research, Evaluation, and Statistics
The Old-Age and Survivors Insurance (OASI) program provides benefits to retired workers and their dependent family members and to survivors of deceased workers. The Disability Insurance (DI) program provides benefits to disabled workers, their spouses, and children (whether or not disabled).
Benefits are paid from the OASI and DI Trust Funds. However, not all disabled beneficiaries are paid from the DI Trust Fund. All disabled widow(er)s' and most disabled adult children's benefits are paid from the OASI Trust Fund. Persons receiving disability benefits from either trust fund are referred to in this report as Social Security beneficiaries.
Data for 2001 and subsequent years presented in these tables may differ slightly from other published statistics for two reasons. First, all data for those years are based on 100 percent data files. Second, beginning in 2001, the definition of an award was changed to include secondary benefit awards, subsequent periods of disability, and conversions from one class of child's benefit to another and to exclude reinstated benefits. Those changes resulted in a slight increase in the award counts.
In accordance with Public Law 111-256 (enacted October 2010), the terms "retardation" and "mental retardation" have been replaced by "intellectual disability." This change in terminology does not affect the data presented, which are directly comparable with the data published in previous editions under the old terminology.
Beginning with the 2010 edition, tables and charts showing data by diagnostic group provide detail for mental disorders in these categories: autistic disorders, developmental disorders, childhood and adolescent disorders not elsewhere classified, intellectual disability, mood disorders, organic mental disorders, schizophrenic and other psychotic disorders, and all other mental disorders. In a few instances, a table showing data by diagnostic group has been split into two companion tables to accommodate the additional detail.
The tables on noninstitutionalized beneficiaries based on the Survey of Income and Program Participation (SIPP) have been removed from the Annual Statistical Report on the Social Security Disability Insurance Program. Because of increased attrition of survey participants over time and increasingly low match rates to administrative data, attempts were made to improve the reliability of estimates based on the SIPP. The Office of Research, Evaluation, and Statistics (ORES) contracted with the Census Bureau to conduct a special SIPP-based interview of Disability Insurance and Supplemental Security Income beneficiaries. Estimates based on the additional data were not available when this report was published. However, ORES anticipates publishing these estimates in another publication as well as highlighting the changes in the data and the reliability of the estimates. This decision reinforces the inherent differences between the survey data used to produce the estimates of noninstitutionalized beneficiaries and the administrative data used in this publication.
All years are calendar years unless otherwise specified.
- History of the Social Security Disability Insurance Program
- Definition of Disability
- Types of Benefits Available
- Initial Disability Decision-making Process
- Appeals Process
- Benefit Calculations
- Benefits Offset and Withheld
- Work Incentives
- Benefit Termination
(Chart 7 and Tables 31–34)