Washington, D.C. – An Associated Press story earlier this week described how the Social Security disability insurance program is projected to experience a funding shortfall as early as 2017, meaning that benefits could not be paid in full and on time to those eligible to receive them. While the story struck an alarming tone – referring to the ”stampede for benefits” and “a program that’s been running in the red for years” – there was nothing new in the report and the basic financial soundness of Social Security has not changed, which permits benefits to be fully paid for the next 25 years or so.
For the complete fact sheet on the disability insurance shortfall, click here.
A few basic facts about Social Security below (explained in more detail here) help better understand the implications of the AP story:
“This Disability Insurance shortfall in 2017 is nothing but a green eyeshade issue for accountants and actuaries. With a quick legislative correction involving no increased costs, Social Security’s disability benefits can continue to be paid for another quarter of a century,” said Nancy Altman, Co-Chair of the Strengthen Social Security Campaign.
“Social Security’s disability insurance, life insurance, and old-age annuities are seamlessly tied together. One benefit formula generates all benefits. In the past, when one of the two trust funds had insufficient income, Congress quietly and quickly reallocated the income to the two funds to ensure that they were on the same financial footing. It has six years to do it once again.”