Earnings and Work Expectations of Social Security Disability Beneficiaries. Disability Policy Research Brief #08-01.


Publication Date: August 2008

Publisher: Mathematica Policy Research, Inc.; Center for Studying Disability Policy

Author(s): Gina A. Livermore

Research Area: Health; Labor

Keywords: Ticket to Work; Disability Beneficiaries; Social Security

Type: Brief

Coverage: United States


The Ticket to Work and Work Incentives Improvement Act of 1999 prompted changes in the Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) programs to help beneficiaries get and stay employed.

This brief, the first in a new series from the Center for Studying Disability Policy at Mathematica, highlights the extent to which SSI and SSDI beneficiaries are working or trying to return to work. It also examines their interest in increasing their earnings and self-sufficiency, as well as the challenges they face.

Overall, 40 percent indicated that their personal goals included getting a job, moving up in a job, or learning new job skills. Data for the brief were drawn from the 2004 Beneficiary Survey, a nationally representative survey of more than 7,500 SSI and SSDI beneficiaries ages 18 to 64, conducted as part of Mathematica's multiyear evaluation of the Ticket to Work program.