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Leading Cause of SSDI Payments Due to Mental Disorders

By Kenton Koszdin Law Office on June 24, 2014 | In Social Security Disability

According to the latest Annual Statistical Report on Social Security Disability Insurance Program, 35.5 percent of Social Security Disability Insurance benefit recipients were diagnosed with a mental disorder — which makes this the leading diagnostic group receiving SSDI benefits.

In December of 2012, some 3,576,844 people classified as mentally impaired were receiving benefits. The second largest group of beneficiaries were classified as having “musculoskeletal system and connective tissue” problems.

The Social Security Administration (SSA) reported that the mental disorders diagnostic group was broken down into eight subgroups. Out of those classifications, mood disorders (1,424,681 or 14.1 percent) were the leading cause for disability awards.

In order for a person who has a mood disorder to be considered eligible for SSDI benefits, he or she must exhibit a combination of factors such as “appetite disturbance with change in weight; psychomotor agitation or retardation; sleep disturbance; feeling of guilt or worthlessness; thoughts of suicide; decreased energy; or hallucinations, delusions, or paranoid thinking.”

Congress made amendments to the disability program in 1984 that increased the number of beneficiaries who could receive SSDI payments due to “mental impairments.” According to the SSA, the “Secretary was required to revise criteria under the Mental Disorders category in the Listing of Impairments used to make disability determinations.”

Following the 1984 Amendments the number of SSDI beneficiaries classified as having mental disorders shot up. Between 1985 and 1986, the number went from 18 percent of all awards to 30 percent of all awards. That number has stayed fairly consistent ever since.

If you have questions concerning SSDI benefits eligibility, set up an appointment to speak with one of the experienced SSDI attorneys at the Kenton Koszdin Law Office in Los Angeles. Call us toll-free at (800) 438-7734 — or you can contact us online.

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