Tucson Social Security Disability Blog

Fewer Workers Means Longer Delays

Posted by John Kuhnlein | Jan 13, 2017 | 0 Comments

As the waiting times for hearings drift further into unconscionable levels, Social Security is trying to do more work with fewer workers.  According to Deputy Commissioner Doug Walker, SSA's current budget is 10% less than it was in 2010, as adjusted for inflation.  During those seven years, the number of Americans claiming benefits has ballooned. Add together all the retirees and the disabled and those getting various ancillary benefits and nearly one in every five Americans gets some sort of Social Security benefit.

More Cuts Coming

The incoming administration seems determined to cut Social Security's budget even further. Trump has signaled that cutting the

Trump
"If a free society cannot help the many who are poor, it cannot save the few who are rich." John F. Kennedy

federal work force is among his primary goals. A worker at a local Social Security office told me this week that they are planning on Draconian reductions. This will start with attrition, meaning not replacing workers who leave. Once this effect is no longer enough, the government is going to begin to target current employees for termination.

Not Just The Disabled Will Be Affected

This is likely to mean that people who need Social Security's various services are going to have to work harder and wait much longer to get them. We see the effects already in such things as the time it takes to get a disability hearing. But even simple things like calling Social Security to get information is going to be more difficult. Applying for retirement benefits is going to be a bigger challenge as retirees will have to apply much farther in advance and wait for Social Security to process their applications. 

Is This Fair?

People fund Social Security by paying into the program their entire working lives.  It seems reasonable to ask if it is fair to make these same people face bureaucratic obstacles just to get what they are entitled to receive.  The disabled have no meaningful voice in Washington. But, if these budget cuts begin to affect the elderly, perhaps Social Security can begin to see it's budget expanded. After all, no group votes more regularly than do the elderly. Voting is still the only way ordinary Americans can hope to have any influence over their representatives.

No, Seriously: Call Your Member of Congress

If you think it is not right for Congress to cut Social Security's budget, contact your member of Congress and let him or her now.

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About the Author

John Kuhnlein

Since 1992, I have been helping the people of Southern Arizona get the benefits they are due. Before devoting all my efforts to assisting people with Social Security disability claims, I also handled such complex lawsuits as medical malpractice and products liability. I brought to my Social Security cases all the skills and attention to detail that I developed in the courtroom. I approach each Social Security disability case as if it were a million-dollar lawsuit. For the people trying to get Social Security benefits, their claim is every bit as important. Because I have personally handled so many Social Security cases, I have refined the skills I need to win your case for you. I have helped people win cases for every kind of ailment from arthritis to valley fever. At present, I am focused on helping those persons with neurological and orthopedic disorders. Because claims for people over age fifty bring additional complications, I particularly seek out those cases to work on. I regularly write about back and spine conditions on my blog. I actively seek out the latest information about orthopedic and neurological disorders to ensure I can represent my clients as effectively as possible. Because of my current focus, I regret that I am not able to take any cases for mental disorders. If you are over age fifty and suffer from any orthopedic or neurological disorder, please contact me at once.

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John Kuhnlein has been assisting people with Social Security disability claims for the past 20 years.

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