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Project Number: p02-02c

Paths to the Disability Insurance Program

Principal Investigator: Monroe Berkowitz

Project Type: Core Research

Project Year: 02

Thematic Category: Economic Aspects of Disability

Project Summary:

The purpose of this project is to shed light on the experiences of applicants to and beneficiaries of the Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) program before they apply for benefits. Knowing what programs these individuals participated in or applied to prior to DI may help SSA's efforts to direct applicants to the world of work rather than a life of benefits. For many persons, filing an application for DI is the end of a long road.

Identification of prior experience with programs such as Temporary Disability Insurance, Workers' Compensation, Unemployment Insurance, Private Disability Insurance and Welfare will be done utilizing existing National Surveys.
At this point, we are confining the inquiry to existing national data sources. In future projects, we would like to think about surveying a sample of applicants to the DI program and to determine from them their benefit and rehabilitation experiences prior to their application for DI. Also, in the future, it may be possible to link the persons on the national surveys to SSA records so that we had a definitive record of who applied and who did not. In any event, what is proposed here is the necessary first step and results should help illuminate the relevance of these past experiences to the decision to apply for DI benefits.

Project Deliverables:

Final Technical Report: Paths to the Disability Insurance Program (Word file Word file - 458k)