Tag: Social security

Cost-shifting between workers comp and Social Security disability disputed

Cost-shifting between workers comp and Social Security disability disputed

The study, released March 26, is focused on the interaction between SSDI and workers compensation benefits and explores cost-shifting that may occur between the two programs.
“There have been some allegations or thoughts that perhaps workers comp cuts in benefits or the tightening of compensability standards at the state level might induce injured workers to file for SSDI … we found that the majority of states did not decrease benefits with a specific focus on permanent partial disability and permanent total disability,” said Jim Davis, director and actuary for Boca Raton, Florida-based NCCI.
Looking at the overall amount that is paid through SSDI is important, according to Emily Spieler, a professor of law at Northeastern University School of Law in Boston.
They will apply for Social Security disability, sometimes while they are receiving the partial benefits, but the amount that is paid out by Social Security over a lifetime for someone who has a workplace injury may be far higher than is paid by workers compensation,” said Ms. Spieler.
NCCI saw the biggest change occur in the number of SSDI applications during the 2007-2009 recession.
“The largest increase in SSDI applications was during the great recession and this is common across states … and that is in contrast or versus any kind of activity at the state level,” said Mr. Davis.
The number of Social Security Disability Insurance beneficiaries rose 58%, and SSDI expenditures grew 138%, to $143 billion from $60 billion, from 2001 to 2015.
“We have two different programs here.
There are still some lingering questions, said Ms. Spieler.
… the second question is to what extent have what they call ‘benefit changes’ had an impact on this cost shift?

Conn’s henchman pleads guilty to role in Social Security fraudster’s stunning escape
Social Security Disability

Conn’s henchman pleads guilty to role in Social Security fraudster’s stunning escape

A man who helped the orchestrator of the largest Social Security fraud in U.S. history cut off his ankle bracelet and flee the country pleaded guilty Friday to his role in the escape, admitting he’d spent months working to set it up.
Curtis Lee Wyatt had been the muscle for Eric C. Conn, a Kentucky lawyer who authorities say ran a fraud ring that totaled well more than $1 billion in bogus Social Security disability claims.
Wyatt, 48, assisted along the way, helping arrange the getaway car and making test-runs to see which border checkpoint would be the easiest for his boss to escape through on his journey out of the U.S. Wyatt also arranged for Conn to have a Faraday bag — the device that allowed him to shield his ankle bracelet when he cut it off, this avoiding detection by the monitoring service.
While Wyatt was charged with — and is pleading guilty to — his role in the Conn escape, Sarah Carver and Jennifer Griffith, the whistleblowers who exposed the massive disability fraud, say it’s just the tip of his criminal activity.
Carver, hoping to catch her breaking telework rules.
Carver and Ms. Griffith said Wyatt should have faced charges for that stalking as well as for the Conn escape.
“However, the DOJ failed to ever charge Wyatt,” Ms.
Carver said.
Authorities finally caught up to him in December at a Pizza hut in Honduras, and he was returned to the U.S. to face his 12-year sentence for the Social Security fraud.
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Social Security disability beneficiaries, expenditures increase: NCCI

Social Security disability beneficiaries, expenditures increase: NCCI

The number of Social Security Disability Insurance beneficiaries rose 58% and SSDI expenditures grew 138%, from $60 billion to $143 billion from 2001 to 2015, according to a report from the National Council on Compensation Insurance issued Monday.
The report looks at the interaction between SSDI and workers compensation benefits and explores cost shifting that may occur between the two programs.
Since 2010, the number of SSDI beneficiaries has been relatively stable, and spending growth has moderated, said Boca Raton, Florida-based NCCI.
In cases where a person receives both workers comp permanent total disability benefits and SSDI, workers comp shoulders a greater portion of total benefits.
The workers comp share of total benefits paid ranged from 68% to 90%, according to the report.
“Some observers have suggested that the long-term increase in SSDI claims and spending is a result of state legislatures lowering WC benefits to shift costs to SSDI,” NCCI said.
“The study found that contention to be inaccurate.
An analysis found that most states did not reduce WC benefits over the past 15 years, and in states where benefits changes did occur, those changes did not prompt more workers to file for SSDI.”

How Special Payments After You Retire Affect Your Social Security Benefit
Social Security Disability

How Special Payments After You Retire Affect Your Social Security Benefit

After you retire from your job or self-employment, you may get payments for work you did before you started receiving Social Security benefits.
We call those “special payments.” Usually, special payments will not affect your Social Security benefit, if they are for work done before you retired.
You should consider this when evaluating your work activity.
Starting with the month you reach full retirement age, you can receive your full monthly benefit no matter how much money you earn.
If you were self-employed, any net income you receive after the first year you retire counts as a special payment if you performed the services before you began receiving Social Security benefits.
“Services” are any regular work or other significant activity you do for your business.
You can find more information and examples of special payments by reading Special Payments After Retirement.
If you want to learn more about the earnings limit, please read How Work Affects Your Benefits.
Got another question about Social Security?
Social Security’s online services are here to put control at your fingertips.

How big will my Social Security disability benefit be?
Social Security Disability

How big will my Social Security disability benefit be?

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Most people focus on the retirement benefits that Social Security pays.
More:How much will I get from Social Security if I earn $100,000?
Below, we’ll look more closely at how the Social Security Administration calculates disability benefits and what amounts you and your family members might be entitled to receive.
Can I get disability benefits under Social Security?
After that, though, the requirement goes up by half a year for every two additional years of age, topping out at 9.5 years for those age 60 or older.
For disability benefits, the SSA recognizes that if you’re disabled early in your career, there’s no way you’ll have a 35-year work history.
Specifically, the SSA does the following calculation: The result is the number of years of earnings included in your work history.
Spouses can get benefits if they’re 62 or older or if they’re caring for your child who’s disabled or under age 16 and receiving Social Security.
If the total payments on your account are greater than 150% to 180% of your primary insurance amount, then the SSA will limit the amounts paid to family members proportionately in order to stay under the family maximum.

How Safe Is Social Security?
Social Security Disability

How Safe Is Social Security?

Social Security is funded by taxes taken from American’s earnings.
For a long time, there has been more money coming in to Social Security than going out, with surplus funds going into “the Social Security trust fund.”
That trust fund encompasses two funds: The Old-Age and Survivors Insurance (OASI) Trust Fund and the Disability Insurance (DI) Trust Fund.
By law, funds are spent only on benefits and administration, and assets in the funds are invested only in securities guaranteed by the U.S. government.
To help explain why that’s not fair, consider this: If someone invests in U.S. bonds, they’re giving the government money, and the government is promising to pay back their investment at a certain time (when the bond “matures”) and to pay interest.
The Social Security trust fund, like someone who buys a bond, is simply investing money and receiving interest along the way.
So the worst that is likely to happen to folks expecting to draw checks from Social Security in the coming decades is that they’ll receive smaller checks.
(This wouldn’t be the first tax increase, either.
Most Americans are taxed on all their income, but those who earn to earn, say, $1,128,400 in 2018 will pay no Social Security tax on $1 million of their income.
Know, too, that there are ways people can increase their Social Security benefits.

37 States That Don’t Tax Social Security Benefits
Social Security Disability

37 States That Don’t Tax Social Security Benefits

While the federal government does tax some of your benefits once your income reaches a certain level, the good news is that a lot of Americans live in states that won’t tax Social Security.
In fact, there are a total of 37 states where you can enjoy your Social Security benefits without paying state taxes on this important source of income.
Which states don’t tax Social Security benefits?
It’s important to consider all taxes you may have to pay as a retiree — including taxes for property, 401(k) and pension income, sales tax, gas taxes, and other state and local taxes — when you make a decision on where to live during your golden years.
You could still owe federal taxes on Social Security benefits If you live in a state that doesn’t tax your Social Security benefits, this doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll enjoy totally tax free income from Social Security.
Not all income counts when determining if you’re taxed.
But a handful of little-known “Social Security secrets” could help ensure a boost in your retirement income.
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How Social Security Helps Women Secure Today and Tomorrow
Social Security Disability

How Social Security Helps Women Secure Today and Tomorrow

March is Women’s History Month — a time to focus not just on the past, but also on the challenges women continue to face in the 21st century.
Today, more women are working than ever before, paying Social Security taxes, and earning credit toward monthly retirement income.
With longer life expectancies than men, women tend to live more years in retirement and have a greater chance of exhausting other sources of income.
Social Security provides financial benefits, tools, and information to help support you throughout life’s journey.
Here are some tools to help you plan for your future: You can visit our Retirement Estimator.
In just a few minutes, you can get a personalized, instant estimate of your retirement benefits.
You should also visit Social Security’s planner pages to get detailed information about how marriage, widowhood, divorce, self-employment, government service, and other life or career events can affect your Social Security.
We base your benefits on your lifetime earnings, so you should create your personal my Social Security account to verify that your earnings were reported correctly.
For more information about the role of Social Security in women’s lives today, you can read Social Security: What Every Woman Should Know.
Take advantage of these tools today and begin planning for tomorrow’s journey.

Social Security Celebrates Black History Month
Social Security Disability

Social Security Celebrates Black History Month

In February, we honor African Americans by celebrating Black History Month.
African American communities have celebrated these birthdays together for over 90 years.
Honoring our shared history is one way we can remember that we believe in freedom and democracy for all.
Another shared belief is that we all deserve a comfortable retirement, free of economic hardship.
We also pay disability benefits to individuals with medical conditions that prevent them from working for more than 12 months or that result in death.
We pay disability through two programs: the Social Security Disability Insurance program, for people who have worked and paid Social Security taxes long enough to be eligible, and the Supplemental Security Income program, which pays benefits based on financial need.
Widows, widowers, and their dependent children may be eligible for Social Security survivors benefits.
In fact, 98 of every 100 children could get benefits if a working parent dies.
And Social Security pays more benefits to children than any other federal program.
You can learn more on our website.

Woman with millions in real estate indicted on charges of scamming Social Security money

Woman with millions in real estate indicted on charges of scamming Social Security money

A Milwaukee woman who received food stamps, medical aid and other public assistance for years while failing to disclose income from $4 million worth of rental properties in Shorewood, South Milwaukee and elsewhere has been indicted by a federal grand jury.
Milwaukee County property and tax records and court documents showed Porush owned or had interest in the properties, some co-owned with her elderly mother.
Her mother, Lidia Kolchinsky, applied for public assistance as well and did not disclose any income from the rental properties.
When Porush and other public assistant applicants reported on a one-page form that they were self-employed or had no income, administrators of the taxpayer-subsidized programs accepted that as fact, with little or no additional verification, the Journal Sentinel found.
The indictment, filed last week, includes two counts of wire fraud totaling $1,420 and one count of making false statements, related to Porush’s application for Supplemental Security Income, or SSI, which was meant to help people with disabilities, blindness and those over 65.
Prosecutors in the Porush case declined to speak to the Journal Sentinel about the indictment.
If convicted, Porush would likely receive far less punishment based on federal sentencing guidelines.
Porush filed for bankruptcy twice in 2017, records show.
Porush filed again later in the year.
Meanwhile, the Wisconsin Department of Justice has filed a claim against Porush in the most recent bankruptcy case, seeking $151,563 it says she improperly received for food and medical assistance from 2009 to 2014.