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Disability fraud not common in US

The Social Security disability benefits program has come under a lot of scrutiny lately amid claims of abuse and fraud. The media has continued to report on local stories of SSDI fraud in the United States, leaving much of the public to believe the SSDI program is full of abuse. 

Despite numerous claims that too many people are receiving SSDI benefits, disability fraud is actually pretty rare. Watchdogs for the Social Security Administration say fraud is not rampant in the system, even though that is what many media reports have the public believing. 

SSDI benefits are vital for millions of Americans living with disabilities. Some people are living with traumatic brain injuries or terminal illnesses and are not able to continue working. SSDI benefits are a lifeline to these people and help them pay for living expenses they couldn't afford on their own. 

Claims of SSDI fraud can damage the reputation of the program. However, it is important to know that recipients receive on average $1,130 each month. This is not a significant amount of income, especially when it used to help pay for medical expenses and treatment in addition to housing and food expenses. 

The public should be aware of the benefits of the SSDI program and how much of an impact these benefits have on a person's life. It is important to be aware of this program as many Americans become disabled every year without any warning, which can make it difficult to financially prepare for the expenses associated with living with a disability. 

Source: The Hill, "Social Security disability fraud is rare," Katy Neas, Jan. 16, 2014

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