Tucson Social Security Disability Blog

Disabled Must Sometimes Choose Between Their Benefits And Their Spouses

Posted by John Kuhnlein | Jun 13, 2019 | 0 Comments

The website Ozy.com recently ran an article documenting how disabled people often have to get divorced simply to keep their health insurance and other benefits.  It is worth reading as a reminder of how being disabled carried more burdens than chronic illnesses.

It's All About Money

As noted in the article, the problem comes down to money. A disabled person who is eligible for Medicare or Medicaid could lose those benefits if his spouse makes more money than these programs allow.  The same is true for the disabled who receive SSI or disabled adult child benefits.  Even those

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Please Let The Numbers Add Up

persons who might otherwise get disabled widow's benefits can lose them simply by getting married.

The article has all the details, including the fact that Social Security has not raised the dollar amount of assets a person can have since 1989. This, despite the fact that $3,000 in 1989 dollars would be the equivalent of $6,000 today.

Disabled Have Much Higher Rates Of Divorce

All of these financial pressures may be contributing to the divorce rate among the disabled. As the Ozy report noted, the disabled get divorced at significantly higher rates than other Americans. In fact, twice as many disabled people get divorced each year than get married. For the able-bodied, there are four marriages for each divorce.

Not Good Policy

Forcing couples who want to say married to get divorced just to maintain disability benefits does not seem like good public policy.  Much of American law and regulation is designed to encourage marriage by offering generous incentives, like lower tax rates. Marriage equality is now considered a civil right, so why not extend it to the disabled?

There is no easy solution to this problem, but Congress and the states need to address it.  To let this go on would continue an insult to the already-wounded.

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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