Social Security Disability Statistics

Social Security Disability Statistics

Social Security Administration Data Regarding Social Security Disability

Circa 2013



  • Profile of Disabled-Worker Beneficiaries 2013
    • Workers accounted for the largest share of disabled beneficiaries (87.4 percent).
    • Average age was 53. Men represented about 52 percent of the beneficiaries.
    • Mental disorders were the diagnosis for about a third all applicants who were awarded disability. Mood disorders made up the largest chunk of approved cases. They accounted for around 1.3 million claims.
    • Schizophrenia, intellectual disorders and other mental issues made up about 1 million approved disability applications.
    • Musculature and connective tissue disabilities garnered the most approvals for physical disabilities.
    • There are two programs offered by Social Security for disabilities. Disability Insurance Benefits and Supplemental Security Income. Disability Insurance Benefits typically pays a higher amount and eligibility is based on work credits. Supplemental Security Income pays the same to all who are approved. Supplemental Security Income payments were another source of income for about one out of eight.
    • Average monthly benefit received was $1,146.42.
    • 1,126,971 claimants were on disability in 2013 with children. 200,000 more men collected disability with children compared to women.
Size and Scope of Social Security Disability Program
  • Disability benefits were paid to just over 10.2 million people in 2013
  • Awards to disabled workers (868,965) accounted for over 90 percent of awards to all disabled beneficiaries (965,190).
  • In December, 2013, payments to disabled beneficiaries totaled about $11.2 billion.
  • During 2013 benefits were terminated for 769,171 disabled workers. This could be due a reevaluation of a disability, a recipient going back to work, a gain in income that would make a person ineligible for SSI the financial needs based program. Like a change in spousal income or an inheritance.
  • Supplemental Security Income payments were another source of income for about one out of seven disabled beneficiaries. 3,527,788 people collected Supplemental Security Income in 2013.
  • $2.4 billion was paid out in 2013 for Supplemental Security Income. Supplemental Security Income or SSI based on financial need for citizens who do not have have work credits for Disability Insurance Benefits or DIB/SSDI. All payments for SSI are the same. DIB payouts are based on how much a claimant paid into the system.
  • In 2013, West Virginia had the highest percentage of recipients by population at 12.4%
  • The same year Utah had the lowest percentage of recipients by population at 3.8%.

Assorted History of Social Security

  • President Franklin Roosevelt signed the Social Security Act in August of 1935. The original act did not include disability insurance, or cost of living adjustments.
  • The United States Postal Service was tasked with distributing Social Security Applications.
  • The first recipient of a monthly retirement check received $22.54 and lived to 100 collecting her retirement benefits for 35 years.
  • In 1954 disability benefits were amended to the Social Security Act for individuals aged 50-64
  • Cost of Living Adjustments did not become a part of the Social Security system until 1975