SSI Annual Statistical Report, 2012

 

Outcomes of Applications for Disability Benefits

Notes

The tables in this section provide data on the outcomes of applications for SSI benefits based on blindness or disability. The data on applications are derived from the Social Security Administration's (SSA's) Disability Research File (DRF) maintained by the Office of Disability Programs. Each year the DRF is updated with information about applications for disability benefits that is then used to determine the outcome of those applications. The outcome data in these tables are reported by year of filing and include decisions made through the administrative appeals process.

Table 69 shows the total number of applications filed in a year, the number that are pending a final decision, the number denied for nonmedical reasons before a medical decision is made (technical denials), the outcome of applications for which a medical allowance or denial was made, and award and allowance rates. Applications for which a medical allowance or denial decision was made but which were subsequently denied for nonmedical reasons are shown under the medical decision header as subsequent denials. The most common nonmedical reason for denying a claim is excess income.

The allowance rate is calculated by dividing the number of medical allowances (including subsequent technical denials) by the total number of medical decisions made for a 1-year cohort. The award rate is a broader program measure that is calculated as the number of allowances minus subsequent denials divided by total applications (minus pending claims) filed for a given year.

Claims that remain pending after 6 years are probably the result of imperfect data rather than excessive delays in the decisionmaking process. It is highly probable that decisions have been rendered on most of the older claims. For more recent years, the award and allowance rates will change as decisions are made on pending claims.

Tables 70–72 show the allowance rate for SSI only and the SSI portion of concurrent (a claim for both Social Security and SSI disability benefits) applications, one for each level in the administrative decisionmaking process, that is, initial, reconsideration, and hearing or higher level.

Beginning with fiscal year 2000, the proportion of claims awarded at each level of the process changed as a result of the Prototype Process being tested in 10 states. Under this test, the reconsideration step of the appeals process was eliminated for applications filed October 1, 1999, or later. Elimination of the reconsideration level in these states results in a decrease in the aggregate proportion of claims awarded at this step.

This section also includes one table that shows the reason for medical allowance and one that shows reason for medical denial (Tables 73 and 74). The reasons are derived from the sequential evaluation process used by decisionmakers. SSA maintains a list of impairments that are considered disabling under its regulations. An applicant can be found to be disabled if he or she:

An applicant can be denied benefits if he or she:

Table 69. Outcomes at all adjudicative levels, by age and year of application, 1992–2011
Year Total Pending final decision Technical denials a Medical decisions Award rate b (percent) Allowance rate c (percent)
Denials Allowances
Medical Subsequent nonmedical d Awards Subsequent denials e
  All ages f
1992 1,828,951 0 134,438 741,839 1,556 860,875 90,243 47.1 56.1
1993 2,048,945 0 141,214 937,757 1,600 878,932 89,442 42.9 50.8
1994 2,014,499 0 123,175 1,041,432 1,681 770,905 77,306 38.3 44.8
1995 1,845,212 0 103,335 995,185 1,344 683,850 61,498 37.1 42.8
1996 1,786,770 0 113,027 938,407 1,886 671,900 61,550 37.6 43.8
1997 1,505,145 0 97,320 738,808 2,074 606,224 60,719 40.3 47.4
1998 1,520,538 0 95,990 701,331 3,831 656,567 62,819 43.2 50.5
1999 1,528,217 0 105,819 688,922 4,003 665,071 64,402 43.5 51.3
2000 1,612,878 0 156,447 687,969 3,841 691,505 73,116 42.9 52.5
2001 1,749,407 0 203,313 725,442 3,542 736,126 80,984 42.1 52.8
2002 1,958,790 0 278,217 810,525 3,583 777,403 89,062 39.7 51.6
2003 2,112,104 0 342,132 870,644 3,365 796,312 99,651 37.7 50.6
2004 2,245,536 0 431,054 905,046 3,225 804,576 101,635 35.8 49.9
2005 2,322,911 606 560,261 881,206 3,115 779,770 97,953 33.6 49.8
2006 2,419,039 1,622 637,973 907,862 2,958 774,109 94,515 32.0 48.8
2007 2,438,121 5,120 657,445 918,154 2,832 762,927 91,643 31.4 48.1
2008 2,540,093 14,951 649,096 942,342 2,714 834,632 96,358 33.1 49.6
2009 2,858,139 53,864 688,521 1,077,159 2,694 919,554 116,347 32.8 49.0
2010 2,894,929 175,890 675,804 1,088,538 2,440 845,023 107,234 31.1 46.6
2011 2,781,124 440,696 616,078 975,154 2,047 668,823 78,326 28.6 43.3
  Under age 18
1992 376,812 0 16,695 148,221 103 204,083 7,710 54.2 58.8
1993 500,676 0 18,788 240,668 135 232,344 8,741 46.4 50.0
1994 530,538 0 16,897 311,137 147 194,655 7,702 36.7 39.4
1995 491,638 0 14,364 306,298 92 163,896 6,988 33.3 35.8
1996 457,057 0 13,532 291,265 86 144,670 7,504 31.7 34.3
1997 334,975 0 10,906 195,730 69 121,439 6,831 36.3 39.6
1998 338,592 0 10,904 182,594 74 137,655 7,365 40.7 44.3
1999 345,067 0 11,898 182,426 68 142,863 7,812 41.4 45.2
2000 355,474 0 15,774 179,549 66 151,912 8,173 42.7 47.1
2001 375,950 0 18,708 182,089 61 166,280 8,812 44.2 49.0
2002 412,957 0 22,677 200,522 78 180,264 9,416 43.7 48.6
2003 438,572 0 25,776 214,609 65 188,119 10,003 42.9 48.0
2004 451,668 0 31,537 220,653 83 189,216 10,179 41.9 47.5
2005 445,100 23 46,751 210,458 101 177,536 10,231 39.9 47.1
2006 455,145 93 50,011 218,650 104 176,022 10,265 38.7 46.0
2007 457,405 260 53,081 218,914 119 175,136 9,895 38.3 45.8
2008 472,553 924 53,736 220,705 142 187,597 9,449 39.8 47.2
2009 539,818 4,399 57,847 254,830 134 211,241 11,367 39.5 46.6
2010 540,203 15,132 57,432 256,693 113 200,083 10,750 38.1 45.1
2011 524,198 38,907 54,889 236,912 98 183,798 9,594 37.9 44.9
  Aged 18–64
1992 1,451,417 0 117,675 593,455 1,451 656,374 82,462 45.2 55.4
1993 1,547,527 0 122,364 696,934 1,463 646,157 80,609 41.8 51.0
1994 1,482,503 0 106,181 729,927 1,529 575,431 69,435 38.8 46.9
1995 1,351,903 0 88,839 688,438 1,245 519,041 54,340 38.4 45.4
1996 1,277,604 0 87,869 646,497 1,534 488,215 53,489 38.2 45.5
1997 1,135,602 0 78,303 541,988 1,456 461,006 52,849 40.6 48.6
1998 1,133,015 0 76,709 516,676 1,860 483,898 53,872 42.7 50.9
1999 1,133,722 0 83,733 505,160 1,542 487,862 55,425 43.0 51.7
2000 1,208,918 0 127,891 507,396 1,438 508,229 63,964 42.0 52.9
2001 1,323,001 0 167,603 542,407 1,436 540,288 71,267 40.8 52.9
2002 1,483,558 0 230,046 608,936 1,571 564,346 78,659 38.0 51.3
2003 1,615,400 0 287,669 655,239 1,765 581,903 88,824 36.0 50.5
2004 1,732,620 0 365,943 683,763 1,819 590,339 90,756 34.1 49.8
2005 1,804,002 583 470,955 670,212 1,917 573,214 87,121 31.8 49.6
2006 1,891,892 1,529 542,481 688,736 1,972 573,512 83,662 30.3 48.8
2007 1,908,581 4,860 557,111 679,353 1,947 584,003 81,307 30.7 49.4
2008 1,995,482 14,025 547,859 701,161 1,975 643,940 86,522 32.5 51.0
2009 2,242,960 49,460 580,565 800,915 2,018 705,361 104,641 32.2 50.2
2010 2,280,064 160,737 568,371 810,455 1,892 642,429 96,180 30.3 47.6
2011 2,182,578 401,731 511,544 716,120 1,581 483,098 68,504 27.1 43.5
SOURCE: Social Security Administration, Disability Research File, 100 percent data.
NOTES: Data for the initial and reconsideration levels are current through June 2012. Data for the hearing level or above are current through October 2012.
Because a number of applications remain pending for more recent years, the numbers and percentages will change over time. Cases can be pending at the initial or appellate levels and can include either medical or technical issues.
Includes decisions for SSI-only applications and applications for both Social Security and SSI. Does not include Social Security–only applications.
a. Applications denied for nonmedical reasons so no decision was made on severity of impairment.
b. Rate determined by dividing awards by all applications minus pending claims for that year.
c. Rate determined by dividing medical allowances by all medical decisions for that year.
d. Applications denied for nonmedical reasons after a decision was made that applicant did not meet the medical severity criteria for disability benefits.
e. Applications denied for nonmedical reasons after a decision was made that applicant met the medical severity criteria for disability benefits.
f. Includes applicants aged 65 or older.
CONTACT: (410) 965-0090 or statistics@ssa.gov.
Table 70. Medical decisions at the initial adjudicative level, by age, year of application, and program, 1992–2011
Year All decisions Decisions on applications for SSI only Decisions on applications for both Social Security and SSI
Total Allowances Allowance rate a (percent) Total Allowances Allowance rate a (percent) Total Allowances Allowance rate a (percent)
  All ages b
1992 1,694,513 686,962 40.5 946,348 399,334 42.2 748,165 287,628 38.4
1993 1,907,731 687,630 36.0 1,106,624 409,102 37.0 801,107 278,528 34.8
1994 1,891,324 577,721 30.5 1,105,532 335,756 30.4 785,792 241,965 30.8
1995 1,741,877 507,742 29.1 1,037,201 291,168 28.1 704,676 216,574 30.7
1996 1,673,743 508,931 30.4 1,000,530 296,655 29.6 673,213 212,276 31.5
1997 1,407,825 459,297 32.6 820,527 260,354 31.7 587,298 198,943 33.9
1998 1,424,548 520,690 36.6 843,671 304,856 36.1 580,877 215,834 37.2
1999 1,422,398 531,498 37.4 843,031 312,871 37.1 579,367 218,627 37.7
2000 1,456,431 554,432 38.1 845,774 320,683 37.9 610,657 233,749 38.3
2001 1,546,094 592,932 38.4 860,944 337,508 39.2 685,150 255,424 37.3
2002 1,680,573 616,501 36.7 904,251 344,833 38.1 776,322 271,668 35.0
2003 1,769,972 631,320 35.7 917,456 343,711 37.5 852,516 287,609 33.7
2004 1,814,482 639,585 35.2 917,579 342,192 37.3 896,903 297,393 33.2
2005 1,762,650 616,349 35.0 888,937 328,359 36.9 873,713 287,990 33.0
2006 1,781,066 602,322 33.8 894,456 316,937 35.4 886,610 285,385 32.2
2007 1,780,676 582,229 32.7 889,279 305,775 34.4 891,397 276,454 31.0
2008 1,890,997 636,468 33.7 947,071 332,823 35.1 943,926 303,645 32.2
2009 2,169,618 719,044 33.1 1,095,552 378,419 34.5 1,074,066 340,625 31.7
2010 2,219,069 695,343 31.3 1,120,502 366,846 32.7 1,098,567 328,497 29.9
2011 2,164,918 652,287 30.1 1,111,418 350,855 31.6 1,053,500 301,432 28.6
  Under age 18
1992 360,117 194,494 54.0 329,316 176,929 53.7 30,801 17,565 57.0
1993 481,888 218,724 45.4 443,778 200,206 45.1 38,110 18,518 48.6
1994 513,641 177,660 34.6 475,233 164,436 34.6 38,408 13,224 34.4
1995 477,274 149,140 31.2 443,367 138,959 31.3 33,907 10,181 30.0
1996 443,525 133,375 30.1 413,379 124,846 30.2 30,146 8,529 28.3
1997 324,069 112,387 34.7 302,540 105,366 34.8 21,529 7,021 32.6
1998 327,688 129,729 39.6 306,164 121,371 39.6 21,524 8,358 38.8
1999 333,169 135,117 40.6 310,763 126,253 40.6 22,406 8,864 39.6
2000 339,700 143,488 42.2 316,325 133,675 42.3 23,375 9,813 42.0
2001 357,242 157,781 44.2 332,701 146,810 44.1 24,541 10,971 44.7
2002 390,280 170,519 43.7 363,007 158,369 43.6 27,273 12,150 44.5
2003 412,796 178,051 43.1 384,457 165,640 43.1 28,339 12,411 43.8
2004 420,131 180,180 42.9 391,024 167,412 42.8 29,107 12,768 43.9
2005 398,349 169,033 42.4 369,914 156,928 42.4 28,435 12,105 42.6
2006 405,134 166,092 41.0 376,681 154,486 41.0 28,453 11,606 40.8
2007 404,324 164,500 40.7 374,495 152,314 40.7 29,829 12,186 40.9
2008 418,817 174,936 41.8 388,313 162,193 41.8 30,504 12,743 41.8
2009 481,971 198,403 41.2 446,904 183,948 41.2 35,067 14,455 41.2
2010 482,769 190,819 39.5 448,564 178,041 39.7 34,205 12,778 37.4
2011 469,300 183,002 39.0 438,086 172,338 39.3 31,214 10,664 34.2
  Aged 18–64
1992 1,333,742 492,046 36.9 616,523 222,077 36.0 717,219 269,969 37.6
1993 1,425,163 468,477 32.9 662,298 208,554 31.5 762,865 259,923 34.1
1994 1,376,322 399,267 29.0 629,051 170,618 27.1 747,271 228,649 30.6
1995 1,263,064 357,732 28.3 592,390 151,417 25.6 670,674 206,315 30.8
1996 1,189,735 338,209 28.4 555,158 142,505 25.7 634,577 195,704 30.8
1997 1,057,299 324,213 30.7 498,637 139,003 27.9 558,662 185,210 33.2
1998 1,056,306 356,592 33.8 506,024 157,861 31.2 550,282 198,731 36.1
1999 1,049,989 362,246 34.5 502,870 162,036 32.2 547,119 200,210 36.6
2000 1,081,027 379,717 35.1 503,788 165,543 32.9 577,239 214,174 37.1
2001 1,155,398 405,803 35.1 505,146 171,400 33.9 650,252 234,403 36.0
2002 1,253,512 413,583 33.0 515,932 165,177 32.0 737,580 248,406 33.7
2003 1,327,731 427,173 32.2 515,627 163,726 31.8 812,104 263,447 32.4
2004 1,366,677 434,571 31.8 511,649 162,380 31.7 855,028 272,191 31.8
2005 1,333,047 418,474 31.4 501,512 156,015 31.1 831,535 262,459 31.6
2006 1,349,411 411,783 30.5 504,810 151,248 30.0 844,601 260,535 30.8
2007 1,351,470 413,771 30.6 503,679 149,772 29.7 847,791 263,999 31.1
2008 1,447,623 458,274 31.7 547,684 167,662 30.6 899,939 290,612 32.3
2009 1,662,395 517,545 31.1 636,810 191,630 30.1 1,025,585 325,915 31.8
2010 1,711,639 501,887 29.3 661,506 186,457 28.2 1,050,133 315,430 30.0
2011 1,670,915 467,221 28.0 663,391 176,691 26.6 1,007,524 290,530 28.8
SOURCE: Social Security Administration, Disability Research File, 100 percent data.
NOTES: Data are current through June 2012.
Because a number of applications remain pending for more recent years, the numbers and percentages will change over time.
Applications with a medical decision may be pending a final nonmedical decision or subsequently denied for nonmedical reasons.
a. Rate determined by dividing medical allowances by all medical decisions for that year.
b. Includes applicants aged 65 or older.
CONTACT: (410) 965-0090 or statistics@ssa.gov.
Table 71. Medical decisions at the reconsideration level, by age, year of application, and program, 1992–2011
Year All decisions Decisions on applications for SSI only Decisions on applications for both Social Security and SSI
Total Allowances Allowance rate a (percent) Total Allowances Allowance rate a (percent) Total Allowances Allowance rate a (percent)
  All ages b
1992 479,152 74,500 15.5 234,057 38,371 16.4 245,095 36,129 14.7
1993 557,384 75,559 13.6 280,174 38,663 13.8 277,210 36,896 13.3
1994 571,602 73,734 12.9 290,341 36,826 12.7 281,261 36,908 13.1
1995 522,987 66,780 12.8 275,013 33,432 12.2 247,974 33,348 13.4
1996 480,593 65,352 13.6 249,224 32,510 13.0 231,369 32,842 14.2
1997 409,396 62,496 15.3 208,993 31,881 15.3 200,403 30,615 15.3
1998 390,212 61,264 15.7 203,132 31,818 15.7 187,080 29,446 15.7
1999 382,196 55,620 14.6 197,671 28,498 14.4 184,525 27,122 14.7
2000 394,662 52,402 13.3 197,882 25,633 13.0 196,780 26,769 13.6
2001 419,766 53,611 12.8 196,541 25,001 12.7 223,225 28,610 12.8
2002 472,269 56,444 12.0 209,695 25,435 12.1 262,574 31,009 11.8
2003 502,907 58,162 11.6 209,116 24,920 11.9 293,791 33,242 11.3
2004 503,680 55,593 11.0 200,185 23,211 11.6 303,495 32,382 10.7
2005 487,236 53,650 11.0 195,288 23,061 11.8 291,948 30,589 10.5
2006 498,326 54,821 11.0 199,663 23,337 11.7 298,663 31,484 10.5
2007 513,013 58,726 11.4 206,399 24,532 11.9 306,614 34,194 11.2
2008 570,374 65,827 11.5 234,444 28,117 12.0 335,930 37,710 11.2
2009 670,502 71,488 10.7 280,394 30,832 11.0 390,108 40,656 10.4
2010 709,897 67,753 9.5 297,735 29,605 9.9 412,162 38,148 9.3
2011 635,446 52,404 8.2 272,812 23,458 8.6 362,634 28,946 8.0
  Under age 18
1992 49,099 9,570 19.5 44,562 8,590 19.3 4,537 980 21.6
1993 75,816 11,440 15.1 69,176 10,355 15.0 6,640 1,085 16.3
1994 91,854 11,475 12.5 83,789 10,461 12.5 8,065 1,014 12.6
1995 86,651 10,459 12.1 79,397 9,625 12.1 7,254 834 11.5
1996 74,836 9,646 12.9 68,797 8,863 12.9 6,039 783 13.0
1997 51,365 8,583 16.7 47,131 7,883 16.7 4,234 700 16.5
1998 49,909 8,042 16.1 45,989 7,417 16.1 3,920 625 15.9
1999 49,456 7,476 15.1 45,465 6,839 15.0 3,991 637 16.0
2000 49,350 7,232 14.7 45,330 6,650 14.7 4,020 582 14.5
2001 50,676 7,463 14.7 46,575 6,841 14.7 4,101 622 15.2
2002 57,688 8,120 14.1 52,949 7,361 13.9 4,739 759 16.0
2003 61,737 8,698 14.1 56,681 7,901 13.9 5,056 797 15.8
2004 60,382 8,122 13.5 55,394 7,424 13.4 4,988 698 14.0
2005 57,383 8,192 14.3 52,552 7,496 14.3 4,831 696 14.4
2006 60,742 8,673 14.3 55,704 7,931 14.2 5,038 742 14.7
2007 62,301 8,742 14.0 56,931 7,976 14.0 5,370 766 14.3
2008 68,493 9,918 14.5 62,718 9,054 14.4 5,775 864 15.0
2009 82,529 11,033 13.4 75,677 10,036 13.3 6,852 997 14.6
2010 84,651 10,736 12.7 77,880 9,896 12.7 6,771 840 12.4
2011 75,585 8,593 11.4 70,031 7,999 11.4 5,554 594 10.7
  Aged 18–64
1992 429,944 64,891 15.1 189,409 29,744 15.7 240,535 35,147 14.6
1993 481,434 64,074 13.3 210,882 28,268 13.4 270,552 35,806 13.2
1994 479,439 62,150 13.0 206,253 26,260 12.7 273,186 35,890 13.1
1995 435,988 56,205 12.9 195,281 23,695 12.1 240,707 32,510 13.5
1996 403,309 54,194 13.4 178,404 22,457 12.6 224,905 31,737 14.1
1997 355,514 52,588 14.8 159,694 22,951 14.4 195,820 29,637 15.1
1998 337,411 51,757 15.3 154,436 23,051 14.9 182,975 28,706 15.7
1999 330,830 47,239 14.3 150,460 20,861 13.9 180,370 26,378 14.6
2000 343,707 44,502 12.9 151,099 18,411 12.2 192,608 26,091 13.5
2001 367,515 45,455 12.4 148,582 17,596 11.8 218,933 27,859 12.7
2002 412,619 47,420 11.5 155,025 17,347 11.2 257,594 30,073 11.7
2003 439,703 48,842 11.1 151,200 16,549 10.9 288,503 32,293 11.2
2004 442,103 46,942 10.6 143,824 15,421 10.7 298,279 31,521 10.6
2005 428,808 44,829 10.5 141,922 15,123 10.7 286,886 29,706 10.4
2006 436,664 45,577 10.4 143,274 15,027 10.5 293,390 30,550 10.4
2007 449,903 49,800 11.1 148,909 16,386 11.0 300,994 33,414 11.1
2008 501,120 55,767 11.1 171,239 18,933 11.1 329,881 36,834 11.2
2009 587,281 60,332 10.3 204,295 20,688 10.1 382,986 39,644 10.4
2010 624,589 56,910 9.1 219,469 19,611 8.9 405,120 37,299 9.2
2011 559,313 43,740 7.8 202,472 15,398 7.6 356,841 28,342 7.9
SOURCE: Social Security Administration, Disability Research File, 100 percent data.
NOTES: Data are current through June 2012.
Because a number of applications remain pending for more recent years, the numbers and percentages will change over time.
Applications with a medical decision may be pending a final nonmedical decision or subsequently denied for nonmedical reasons.
A revised process was introduced on October 1, 1999, in 10 states, under which initial denials could be appealed directly to the hearing level without a reconsideration.
a. Rate determined by dividing medical allowances by all medical decisions for that year.
b. Includes applicants aged 65 or older.
CONTACT: (410) 965-0090 or statistics@ssa.gov.
Table 72. Medical decisions at the hearing level or above, by age, year of application, and program, 1992–2011
Year All decisions Decisions on applications for SSI only Decisions on applications for both Social Security and SSI
Total Allowances Allowance rate a (percent) Total Allowances Allowance rate a (percent) Total Allowances Allowance rate a (percent)
  All ages b
1992 280,751 189,656 67.6 128,789 79,307 61.6 151,962 110,349 72.6
1993 327,271 205,185 62.7 153,126 85,195 55.6 174,145 119,990 68.9
1994 333,329 196,756 59.0 156,584 80,594 51.5 176,745 116,162 65.7
1995 300,958 170,826 56.8 145,570 70,445 48.4 155,388 100,381 64.6
1996 271,977 159,167 58.5 128,712 64,430 50.1 143,265 94,737 66.1
1997 238,765 145,150 60.8 112,218 59,766 53.3 126,547 85,384 67.5
1998 224,761 137,432 61.1 107,693 58,028 53.9 117,068 79,404 67.8
1999 231,530 142,355 61.5 111,215 59,903 53.9 120,315 82,452 68.5
2000 260,933 157,787 60.5 124,028 65,071 52.5 136,905 92,716 67.7
2001 283,318 170,567 60.2 126,615 65,611 51.8 156,703 104,956 67.0
2002 321,418 193,520 60.2 134,930 69,256 51.3 186,488 124,264 66.6
2003 340,587 206,481 60.6 131,931 67,623 51.3 208,656 138,858 66.5
2004 342,998 211,033 61.5 125,635 65,307 52.0 217,363 145,726 67.0
2005 331,671 207,724 62.6 122,258 64,938 53.1 209,413 142,786 68.2
2006 339,614 211,481 62.3 124,579 66,139 53.1 215,035 145,342 67.6
2007 345,615 213,615 61.8 127,612 67,905 53.2 218,003 145,710 66.8
2008 377,557 228,695 60.6 143,318 74,533 52.0 234,239 154,162 65.8
2009 415,364 245,369 59.1 160,559 80,818 50.3 254,805 164,551 64.6
2010 333,211 189,161 56.8 127,756 60,557 47.4 205,455 128,604 62.6
2011 81,011 42,458 52.4 32,870 13,555 41.2 48,141 28,903 60.0
  Under age 18
1992 19,988 7,729 38.7 17,979 6,890 38.3 2,009 839 41.8
1993 31,658 10,921 34.5 28,625 9,784 34.2 3,033 1,137 37.5
1994 38,751 13,222 34.1 34,869 11,860 34.0 3,882 1,362 35.1
1995 35,856 11,285 31.5 32,428 10,131 31.2 3,428 1,154 33.7
1996 28,105 9,153 32.6 25,589 8,295 32.4 2,516 858 34.1
1997 19,549 7,300 37.3 17,723 6,594 37.2 1,826 706 38.7
1998 18,904 7,249 38.3 17,199 6,550 38.1 1,705 699 41.0
1999 20,903 8,082 38.7 18,986 7,293 38.4 1,917 789 41.2
2000 25,201 9,365 37.2 22,916 8,426 36.8 2,285 939 41.1
2001 26,841 9,848 36.7 24,497 8,899 36.3 2,344 949 40.5
2002 30,504 11,041 36.2 27,854 9,987 35.9 2,650 1,054 39.8
2003 31,571 11,373 36.0 28,731 10,243 35.7 2,840 1,130 39.8
2004 30,687 11,093 36.1 27,902 9,941 35.6 2,785 1,152 41.4
2005 28,690 10,542 36.7 26,044 9,421 36.2 2,646 1,121 42.4
2006 30,089 11,522 38.3 27,370 10,348 37.8 2,719 1,174 43.2
2007 30,664 11,789 38.4 27,702 10,502 37.9 2,962 1,287 43.5
2008 33,017 12,192 36.9 29,880 10,855 36.3 3,137 1,337 42.6
2009 37,932 13,172 34.7 34,473 11,768 34.1 3,459 1,404 40.6
2010 28,334 9,278 32.7 25,927 8,412 32.4 2,407 866 36.0
2011 6,477 1,797 27.7 6,005 1,659 27.6 472 138 29.2
  Aged 18–64
1992 260,727 181,899 69.8 110,785 72,398 65.4 149,942 109,501 73.0
1993 295,551 194,215 65.7 124,445 75,368 60.6 171,106 118,847 69.5
1994 294,441 183,449 62.3 121,584 68,654 56.5 172,857 114,795 66.4
1995 264,954 159,444 60.2 113,002 60,224 53.3 151,952 99,220 65.3
1996 243,064 149,301 61.4 102,414 55,516 54.2 140,650 93,785 66.7
1997 218,255 137,054 62.8 93,599 52,430 56.0 124,656 84,624 67.9
1998 204,894 129,421 63.2 89,580 50,760 56.7 115,314 78,661 68.2
1999 210,020 133,802 63.7 91,668 52,179 56.9 118,352 81,623 69.0
2000 235,110 147,974 62.9 100,534 56,232 55.9 134,576 91,742 68.2
2001 255,887 160,297 62.6 101,572 56,321 55.4 154,315 103,976 67.4
2002 290,161 182,002 62.7 106,370 58,825 55.3 183,791 123,177 67.0
2003 308,417 194,712 63.1 102,667 57,036 55.6 205,750 137,676 66.9
2004 311,811 199,582 64.0 97,288 55,042 56.6 214,523 144,540 67.4
2005 302,717 197,032 65.1 95,983 55,389 57.7 206,734 141,643 68.5
2006 309,310 199,814 64.6 97,027 55,675 57.4 212,283 144,139 67.9
2007 314,749 201,739 64.1 99,736 57,327 57.5 215,013 144,412 67.2
2008 344,378 216,421 62.8 113,304 63,605 56.1 231,074 152,816 66.1
2009 377,282 232,125 61.5 125,971 68,992 54.8 251,311 163,133 64.9
2010 304,737 179,812 59.0 101,721 52,089 51.2 203,016 127,723 62.9
2011 74,492 40,641 54.6 26,837 11,883 44.3 47,655 28,758 60.3
SOURCE: Social Security Administration, Disability Research File, 100 percent data.
NOTES: Data are current through October 2012.
Because a number of applications remain pending for more recent years, the numbers and percentages will change over time.
Applications with a medical decision may be pending a final nonmedical decision or subsequently denied for nonmedical reasons.
A revised process was introduced on October 1, 1999, in 10 states, under which initial denials could be appealed directly to the hearing level without a reconsideration.
a. Rate determined by dividing medical allowances by all medical decisions for that year.
b. Includes applicants aged 65 or older.
CONTACT: (410) 965-0090 or statistics@ssa.gov.
Table 73. Percentage distribution of final medical allowances, by age, year of application, and reason for allowance, 1992–2011
Year Total Meets level of severity of listings a Under age 18 only Aged 18 or older only Other a,b
Number Percent Medically equals level of severity of listings Functionally equals level of severity of listings Equals level of severity of listings Medical and vocational factors considered
  All ages c
1992 951,118 100.0 36.6 1.5 1.3 7.5 18.6 34.4
1993 968,374 100.0 36.5 1.5 1.6 5.5 17.4 37.6
1994 848,211 100.0 36.8 1.5 2.1 4.4 18.1 37.1
1995 745,348 100.0 35.8 1.6 2.5 4.3 18.6 37.2
1996 733,450 100.0 35.9 1.8 3.3 4.4 17.4 37.2
1997 666,943 100.0 37.6 1.8 4.3 4.7 18.4 33.3
1998 719,386 100.0 38.2 1.9 4.8 4.2 20.0 30.9
1999 731,105 100.0 36.5 2.0 5.3 3.9 20.8 31.4
2000 764,621 100.0 35.0 1.9 6.1 4.2 21.3 31.5
2001 817,110 100.0 34.6 1.8 6.9 4.2 22.1 30.4
2002 866,465 100.0 33.0 1.7 7.8 3.7 21.6 32.2
2003 895,963 100.0 32.0 1.6 8.7 3.6 21.8 32.2
2004 906,211 100.0 31.2 1.5 9.3 3.6 22.4 32.1
2005 877,723 100.0 30.4 1.4 9.5 3.4 22.7 32.6
2006 868,624 100.0 29.9 1.3 9.9 3.3 22.3 33.4
2007 854,570 100.0 30.2 1.3 10.5 3.5 23.3 31.3
2008 930,990 100.0 29.7 1.2 10.1 3.8 24.6 30.5
2009 1,035,901 100.0 29.1 1.2 10.6 3.9 26.1 29.2
2010 952,257 100.0 29.5 1.3 11.4 4.1 27.7 26.0
2011 747,149 100.0 34.7 1.6 13.6 4.8 32.5 12.9
  Under age 18
1992 211,793 100.0 48.3 6.9 5.9 . . . . . . 38.9
1993 241,085 100.0 44.9 5.9 6.4 . . . . . . 42.7
1994 202,357 100.0 45.6 6.5 8.6 . . . . . . 39.3
1995 170,884 100.0 44.8 7.0 11.0 . . . . . . 37.2
1996 152,174 100.0 52.7 8.7 16.0 . . . . . . 22.6
1997 128,270 100.0 55.8 9.2 22.1 . . . . . . 12.9
1998 145,020 100.0 55.6 9.6 23.6 . . . . . . 11.2
1999 150,821 100.0 53.1 9.7 25.8 . . . . . . 11.4
2000 160,085 100.0 50.1 9.2 28.9 . . . . . . 11.8
2001 175,092 100.0 48.2 8.2 32.4 . . . . . . 11.2
2002 189,680 100.0 45.2 7.6 35.8 . . . . . . 11.3
2003 198,122 100.0 43.5 7.4 39.3 . . . . . . 9.8
2004 199,395 100.0 42.0 6.6 42.3 . . . . . . 9.1
2005 187,767 100.0 39.9 6.5 44.2 . . . . . . 9.5
2006 186,287 100.0 37.9 5.9 46.2 . . . . . . 10.1
2007 185,031 100.0 37.1 5.8 48.4 . . . . . . 8.7
2008 197,046 100.0 37.7 5.8 47.8 . . . . . . 8.6
2009 222,608 100.0 37.1 5.6 49.1 . . . . . . 8.2
2010 210,833 100.0 36.3 5.7 51.6 . . . . . . 6.4
2011 193,392 100.0 38.6 6.1 52.6 . . . . . . 2.7
  Aged 18–64
1992 738,836 100.0 33.3 . . . . . . 9.7 23.9 33.2
1993 726,766 100.0 33.7 . . . . . . 7.3 23.1 35.9
1994 644,866 100.0 34.0 . . . . . . 5.8 23.8 36.4
1995 573,381 100.0 33.2 . . . . . . 5.6 24.0 37.2
1996 541,704 100.0 33.7 . . . . . . 5.9 23.3 37.1
1997 513,855 100.0 34.5 . . . . . . 6.1 22.6 36.9
1998 537,770 100.0 35.5 . . . . . . 5.5 23.9 35.1
1999 544,767 100.0 33.9 . . . . . . 5.2 25.0 35.8
2000 572,193 100.0 32.4 . . . . . . 5.5 26.2 35.8
2001 611,555 100.0 32.3 . . . . . . 5.5 27.6 34.6
2002 643,005 100.0 30.9 . . . . . . 5.0 27.2 36.9
2003 670,727 100.0 29.8 . . . . . . 4.8 27.9 37.5
2004 681,095 100.0 29.1 . . . . . . 4.7 28.9 37.3
2005 660,335 100.0 28.9 . . . . . . 4.5 29.3 37.2
2006 657,174 100.0 28.7 . . . . . . 4.4 28.8 38.2
2007 665,310 100.0 28.4 . . . . . . 4.5 29.4 37.7
2008 730,462 100.0 27.6 . . . . . . 4.9 31.0 36.6
2009 810,002 100.0 26.9 . . . . . . 5.0 33.0 35.1
2010 738,609 100.0 27.7 . . . . . . 5.3 35.4 31.7
2011 551,602 100.0 33.4 . . . . . . 6.4 43.8 16.4
SOURCE: Social Security Administration, Disability Research File, 100 percent data.
NOTES: Data for the initial and reconsideration levels are current through June 2012. Data for the hearing level or above are current through October 2012.
Because a number of applications remain pending for more recent years, the numbers and percentages will change over time.
Applications with a medical decision may be pending a final nonmedical decision or subsequently denied for nonmedical reasons.
Includes decisions for SSI-only applications and applications for both Social Security and SSI. Does not include Social Security–only applications.
. . . = not applicable.
a. Includes all age groups.
b. Includes applications for which the disability was previously established and those for which the basis for the determination is not available. For final determinations made in or before August 1996 for applicants under age 18, also includes applications allowed because individual functional assessment showed impairment of comparable severity.
c. Includes applicants aged 65 or older.
CONTACT: (410) 965-0090 or statistics@ssa.gov.
Table 74. Percentage distribution of final medical denials, by age, year of application, and reason for denial, 1992–2011
Year Total Impairment did not or is not expected to last 12 months Impairment is not severe Impairment does not cause severe functional limitations a Able to do usual past work b Able to do other type of work b Other c
Number Percent
  All ages d
1992 743,395 100.0 7.3 22.1 . . . 17.5 26.3 26.9
1993 939,357 100.0 6.6 21.2 . . . 15.4 24.8 31.9
1994 1,043,113 100.0 6.2 20.7 . . . 13.6 23.3 36.1
1995 996,529 100.0 6.2 19.7 . . . 12.4 22.4 39.2
1996 940,293 100.0 6.4 20.6 5.8 12.1 22.9 32.2
1997 740,882 100.0 6.8 16.7 16.2 13.0 25.1 22.1
1998 705,162 100.0 6.9 15.0 18.3 14.7 25.4 19.9
1999 691,487 100.0 6.6 14.0 19.1 15.5 24.5 20.2
2000 691,810 100.0 6.5 13.3 18.7 15.8 24.2 21.5
2001 728,984 100.0 6.1 13.2 18.2 16.6 26.1 19.8
2002 814,108 100.0 5.7 13.0 18.2 17.0 26.6 19.6
2003 874,009 100.0 5.1 12.1 18.6 17.2 27.4 19.6
2004 908,271 100.0 4.8 11.3 18.6 16.9 27.8 20.7
2005 884,321 100.0 4.5 11.1 18.0 16.4 28.1 21.9
2006 910,820 100.0 4.3 11.3 18.2 16.4 28.2 21.5
2007 920,986 100.0 4.3 10.8 18.2 16.4 27.7 22.6
2008 945,056 100.0 4.0 10.4 18.1 16.7 28.5 22.3
2009 1,079,853 100.0 3.3 10.4 18.5 16.6 29.5 21.6
2010 1,090,978 100.0 3.0 10.8 18.5 15.8 29.5 22.4
2011 977,201 100.0 3.2 10.8 19.1 12.9 31.6 22.4
  Under age 18
1992 148,324 100.0 1.5 22.7 . . . . . . . . . 75.8
1993 240,803 100.0 1.3 21.8 . . . . . . . . . 76.9
1994 311,284 100.0 1.4 22.4 . . . . . . . . . 76.2
1995 306,390 100.0 1.3 21.8 . . . . . . . . . 76.9
1996 291,351 100.0 1.4 26.9 18.7 . . . . . . 53.0
1997 195,799 100.0 1.6 19.1 61.4 . . . . . . 18.0
1998 182,668 100.0 1.3 14.4 70.6 . . . . . . 13.7
1999 182,358 100.0 1.1 13.3 72.4 . . . . . . 13.2
2000 179,615 100.0 1.1 13.2 72.1 . . . . . . 13.6
2001 182,150 100.0 1.1 14.0 73.0 . . . . . . 11.9
2002 200,600 100.0 1.0 13.4 73.9 . . . . . . 11.8
2003 214,674 100.0 0.9 12.3 75.9 . . . . . . 10.9
2004 220,736 100.0 0.8 10.9 76.5 . . . . . . 11.8
2005 210,559 100.0 0.9 11.0 75.6 . . . . . . 12.6
2006 218,754 100.0 0.8 11.4 75.9 . . . . . . 12.0
2007 219,033 100.0 0.9 11.3 76.5 . . . . . . 11.4
2008 220,847 100.0 0.9 10.7 77.6 . . . . . . 10.8
2009 254,964 100.0 0.8 10.1 78.4 . . . . . . 10.7
2010 256,806 100.0 0.7 10.2 78.5 . . . . . . 10.5
2011 237,010 100.0 0.8 10.7 78.7 . . . . . . 9.8
  Aged 18–64
1992 594,906 100.0 8.8 21.9 . . . 21.8 32.8 14.7
1993 698,397 100.0 8.4 21.0 . . . 20.7 33.4 16.4
1994 731,456 100.0 8.3 20.0 . . . 19.4 33.2 19.1
1995 689,683 100.0 8.4 18.8 . . . 17.9 32.4 22.5
1996 648,031 100.0 8.6 17.8 . . . 17.5 33.3 22.8
1997 543,444 100.0 8.8 15.8 . . . 17.7 34.2 23.6
1998 518,536 100.0 8.9 14.9 . . . 19.7 34.4 22.0
1999 505,406 100.0 8.7 14.1 . . . 21.0 33.5 22.7
2000 508,834 100.0 8.4 13.2 . . . 21.3 32.8 24.3
2001 543,843 100.0 7.8 12.8 . . . 22.1 35.0 22.3
2002 610,507 100.0 7.3 12.7 . . . 22.5 35.4 22.1
2003 657,004 100.0 6.5 11.9 . . . 22.7 36.4 22.4
2004 685,582 100.0 6.0 11.4 . . . 22.3 36.8 23.5
2005 672,129 100.0 5.6 11.1 . . . 21.5 36.9 24.8
2006 690,708 100.0 5.4 11.3 . . . 21.5 37.2 24.5
2007 681,300 100.0 5.5 10.9 . . . 22.1 37.4 24.0
2008 703,136 100.0 5.1 10.5 . . . 22.4 38.3 23.6
2009 802,933 100.0 4.2 10.8 . . . 22.3 39.7 23.0
2010 812,347 100.0 3.8 11.3 . . . 21.1 39.6 24.2
2011 717,701 100.0 4.1 11.2 . . . 17.5 43.0 24.2
SOURCE: Social Security Administration, Disability Research File, 100 percent data.
NOTES: Data for the initial and reconsideration levels are current through June 2012. Data for the hearing level or above are current through October 2012.
Because a number of applications remain pending for more recent years, the numbers and percentages will change over time.
Applications with a medical decision may be pending a final nonmedical decision or subsequently denied for nonmedical reasons.
Includes decisions for SSI-only applications and applications for both Social Security and SSI. Does not include Social Security–only applications.
. . . = not applicable.
a. Used only for applicants under age 18. Category effective for final determinations made August 1996 or later.
b. Used only for applicants aged 18 or older.
c. Applicant provided insufficient evidence, failed to cooperate, failed to follow prescribed treatment, did not want to continue development of the claim, or returned to substantial work before disability could be established. For final determinations made August 1996 or before for applicants under age 18, also includes claims denied because individual functional assessment showed impairment not of comparable severity.
d. Includes applicants aged 65 or older.
CONTACT: (410) 965-0090 or statistics@ssa.gov.