Publication Date

Summer 2012


We investigate the determinants of application for Social Security Disability Insurance (DI) benefits in approxi­mately 45 jurisdictions between 1981 and 1999. We reproduce findings of previous studies of the determinants of DI application then test the additional influence of changes to workers’ compensation program benefits and rules on DI application rates. Our findings indicate that the programs are interrelated: When workers’ compensation benefits declined and eligibility rules tightened in the 1990s, the DI application rate increased.


riginally Published as Guo, X. & Burton, J.F. (2012). The growth in applications for Social Security Disability Insurance: A spillover effect from workers’ compensation. Social Security Bulletin, 72(3), 1-20. See for original publication.

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