The Social Security Administration's solvency or lack thereof is frequently in the news here in Wisconsin. It has been forecast that the administration's trust fund will be exhausted sometime in the 2030s, which means that by that time taxes will need to be raised to fund the program or benefits will need to be cut. Politicians argue back and forth about what to do about this issue, most often focusing on the retirement benefits that are most commonly associated with Social Security.
As many people in Wisconsin are aware, earlier in March the federal government announced budget cuts across the board. This has been called the "sequester," and it has hit a number of areas of government--from education to agriculture to the criminal justice system.
Becoming struck with a disability can permanently change a person's life. Whether it be a personal relationship, a set of job skills, or the stability of one's health, very little is left unadulterated in life after the onset of a debilitating illness or serious injury. Many in these situations are fortunate enough to have the Social Security Administration's disability benefits program available to them. However, that turn of good fortune is not always extended to those who need it the most.
There are a number of reasons that the vast majority of Social Security disability claims out of Wisconsin are denied the first time around. One reason is that because the application process is very complicated applicants often fail to provide sufficient documentation of their disabilities. Another reason is that the Social Security Administration has an immense backlog of applications, so individual judges fail to give each application the attention it deserves.
For those in Wisconsin who have ever been in need of Social Security disability benefits, it must make your blood boil when you read news stories about SSDI fraud--people who do not deserve these benefits somehow making their way through the tedious application process. Many of us wonder how legitimate claims can be so often denied while fraudulent claims are approved.
Here in Wisconsin when people think about disability benefits, they often think of someone who has been injured on the job or was involved in a catastrophic accident and left unable to work. However, there are also a variety of illnesses and mental health conditions that can leave someone in need of either Social Security disability insurance benefits or long-term disability benefits.