Welcome!

News Feed Item

Study Reveals New Insight About Social Security Disability Benefits Amid Agency's Influx Of Problems

Columbia Business School economist looks into the possibility of unemployed workers tapping the disability fund when running out of unemployment benefits.

NEW YORK, Feb. 10, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- With millions of Americans' unemployment benefits expiring, and as the Social Security Administration comes under increasing pressure to reform its financially-troubled entitlement program, policymakers are asking whether a significant amount of Americans are bilking disability benefits from federal coffers. A new study from Columbia Business School sheds light on the answer.

(Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20120905/NY68578LOGO )
(Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20140210/NY62001-a )

The research, titled "Unemployment Insurance and Disability Insurance in the Great Recession," refutes the idea that the jobless and uninsured flock to disability benefits when their unemployment benefits expire.  

"Contrary to the beliefs of many, even in policy circles, our research proves that the unemployed do not directly file for disability following the exhaustion of benefits," says Columbia Business School Professor Andreas Mueller, who helmed the study.  "The evidence is just not there. As a matter of fact, fewer than 2% of workers whose unemployment benefits had expired actually applied for disability insurance."

The study was co-conducted by University of California, Berkeley Professor Jesse Rothstein, and University of California, Los Angeles Professor Tim M. von Wachter

The Research 

Until now, little research has been conducted regarding the degree to which Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) is used by workers who exhaust their unemployment benefits. There have been concerns for years by the public and in policy circles that the explosion of SSDI is due to these displaced workers.  

Mueller and his colleagues looked at nearly a decade worth of data to determine whether there was a significant drop or rise in disability insurance applications during periods of widespread variability in unemployment extensions.

The data includes sources that are being used for the first time to investigate the relationship between unemployment insurance exhaustion and disability insurance applications. Through statistics gathered from the Social Security Administration, the researchers analyzed applications to disability insurance and their award rates, and how that information relates to the number of people exhausting unemployment insurance benefits. The researchers assumed that workers would apply for disability either three months prior or following the exhaustion of benefits.

Unemployment Insurance Exhaustions and SSDI applications by month, 2004-2012

(Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20140210/NY62001-b )

"While SSDI applications did rise somewhat over the course of the recent recessions, there appears to be no significant increase in SSDI applications in periods where the number of UI exhaustions dropped to zero due to the large UI extensions that were enacted during those times," said Mueller.

The Results

The research reveals that expiring unemployment insurance does not cause a spike in SSDI.  In fact, all of the analyses show a 2% or smaller correlation between the number of workers whose unemployment benefits had been exhausted and the number of those who applied for disability insurance. Even in states that had a lengthy unemployment extension period, Mueller and his co-authors did not observe a significant drop in disability insurance applications.

"Although we cannot rule out small effects , the takeaway here is we can conclude that there is no convincing evidence that workers whose unemployment benefits have expired apply for disability insurance on a large scale," says Mueller. "These findings suggest that the expiration of federal unemployment insurance extensions will not cause additional harm to the financial solvency of the Social Security program and the SSDI trust fund expected to run out by 2016. I hope that these findings will help alleviate certain questions and concerns about the current system and focus the debate on the aspects of reform most needed."

To learn more about the cutting–edge research being performed by Columbia Business School faculty members, please visit www.gsb.columbia.edu.

About Columbia Business School 
Columbia Business School is the only world–class, Ivy League business school that delivers a learning experience where academic excellence meets with real–time exposure to the pulse of global business. Led by Dean Glenn Hubbard, the School's transformative curriculum bridges academic theory with unparalleled exposure to real–world business practice, equipping students with an entrepreneurial mindset that allows them to recognize, capture, and create opportunity in any business environment. The thought leadership of the School's faculty and staff, combined with the accomplishments of its distinguished alumni and position in the center of global business, means that the School's efforts have an immediate, measurable impact on the forces shaping business every day. To learn more about Columbia Business School's position at the very center of business, please visit www.gsb.columbia.edu.

SOURCE Columbia Business School

More Stories By PR Newswire

Copyright © 2007 PR Newswire. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PRNewswire content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of PRNewswire. PRNewswire shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

Latest Stories
Internet of @ThingsExpo, taking place November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with 19th Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. The Internet of Things (IoT) is the most profound change in personal and enterprise IT since the creation of the Worldwide Web more than 20 years ago. All major researchers estimate there will be tens of billions devices - comp...
What does it look like when you have access to cloud infrastructure and platform under the same roof? Let’s talk about the different layers of Technology as a Service: who cares, what runs where, and how does it all fit together. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Phil Jackson, Lead Technology Evangelist at SoftLayer, an IBM company, spoke about the picture being painted by IBM Cloud and how the tools being crafted can help fill the gaps in your IT infrastructure.
Developing software for the Internet of Things (IoT) comes with its own set of challenges. Security, privacy, and unified standards are a few key issues. In addition, each IoT product is comprised of (at least) three separate application components: the software embedded in the device, the back-end service, and the mobile application for the end user’s controls. Each component is developed by a different team, using different technologies and practices, and deployed to a different stack/target –...
One of biggest questions about Big Data is “How do we harness all that information for business use quickly and effectively?” Geographic Information Systems (GIS) or spatial technology is about more than making maps, but adding critical context and meaning to data of all types, coming from all different channels – even sensors. In his session at @ThingsExpo, William (Bill) Meehan, director of utility solutions for Esri, will take a closer look at the current state of spatial technology and ar...
According to Forrester Research, every business will become either a digital predator or digital prey by 2020. To avoid demise, organizations must rapidly create new sources of value in their end-to-end customer experiences. True digital predators also must break down information and process silos and extend digital transformation initiatives to empower employees with the digital resources needed to win, serve, and retain customers.
A strange thing is happening along the way to the Internet of Things, namely far too many devices to work with and manage. It has become clear that we'll need much higher efficiency user experiences that can allow us to more easily and scalably work with the thousands of devices that will soon be in each of our lives. Enter the conversational interface revolution, combining bots we can literally talk with, gesture to, and even direct with our thoughts, with embedded artificial intelligence, wh...
Complete Internet of Things (IoT) embedded device security is not just about the device but involves the entire product’s identity, data and control integrity, and services traversing the cloud. A device can no longer be looked at as an island; it is a part of a system. In fact, given the cross-domain interactions enabled by IoT it could be a part of many systems. Also, depending on where the device is deployed, for example, in the office building versus a factory floor or oil field, security ha...
Ask someone to architect an Internet of Things (IoT) solution and you are guaranteed to see a reference to the cloud. This would lead you to believe that IoT requires the cloud to exist. However, there are many IoT use cases where the cloud is not feasible or desirable. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Dave McCarthy, Director of Products at Bsquare Corporation, will discuss the strategies that exist to extend intelligence directly to IoT devices and sensors, freeing them from the constraints of ...
Let’s face it, embracing new storage technologies, capabilities and upgrading to new hardware often adds complexity and increases costs. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Seth Oxenhorn, Vice President of Business Development & Alliances at FalconStor, discussed how a truly heterogeneous software-defined storage approach can add value to legacy platforms and heterogeneous environments. The result reduces complexity, significantly lowers cost, and provides IT organizations with improved efficienc...
Businesses are struggling to manage the information flow and interactions between all of these new devices and things jumping on their network, and the apps and IT systems they control. The data businesses gather is only helpful if they can do something with it. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Chris Witeck, Principal Technology Strategist at Citrix, will discuss how different the impact of IoT will be for large businesses, expanding how IoT will allow large organizations to make their legacy ap...
19th Cloud Expo, taking place November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. Cloud computing is now being embraced by a majority of enterprises of all sizes. Yesterday's debate about public vs. private has transformed into the reality of hybrid cloud: a recent survey shows that 74% of enterprises have a hybrid cloud strategy. Meanwhile, 94% of enterpri...
SYS-CON Events announced today that CDS Global Cloud, an Infrastructure as a Service provider, will exhibit at the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. CDS Global Cloud is an IaaS (Infrastructure as a Service) provider specializing in solutions for e-commerce, internet gaming, online education and other internet applications. With a growing number of data centers and network points around the world, ...
In this strange new world where more and more power is drawn from business technology, companies are effectively straddling two paths on the road to innovation and transformation into digital enterprises. The first path is the heritage trail – with “legacy” technology forming the background. Here, extant technologies are transformed by core IT teams to provide more API-driven approaches. Legacy systems can restrict companies that are transitioning into digital enterprises. To truly become a lea...
24Notion is full-service global creative digital marketing, technology and lifestyle agency that combines strategic ideas with customized tactical execution. With a broad understand of the art of traditional marketing, new media, communications and social influence, 24Notion uniquely understands how to connect your brand strategy with the right consumer. 24Notion ranked #12 on Corporate Social Responsibility - Book of List.
Why do your mobile transformations need to happen today? Mobile is the strategy that enterprise transformation centers on to drive customer engagement. In his general session at @ThingsExpo, Roger Woods, Director, Mobile Product & Strategy – Adobe Marketing Cloud, covered key IoT and mobile trends that are forcing mobile transformation, key components of a solid mobile strategy and explored how brands are effectively driving mobile change throughout the enterprise.