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Trump outlines a significant social security cut in his 2020 budget

This past Monday, March 11, President Trump unveiled his fiscal 2020 budget proposal for the federal government. As a reminder, fiscal years for the federal government end on Sept. 30 and begin on Oct. 1. Unveiling a budget months in advance of the actual implementation is supposed to allow Congress to make tweaks, as needed, to get a yearlong budget passed.
Trump’s 2020 budget featured a lot of talking points (as presidential budgets often do), a number of which came under harsh criticism by members of the Democratic Party.
President Trump giving remarks at the Pentagon. In particular, political opponents of the president focused on a handful of proposed cuts to social programs, which go against Trump’s campaign promises in 2016 not to touch so-called entitlement programs like Medicare and Social Security.
Contained within the president’s budget were calls for about $1.5 trillion in cuts to Medicaid over the next 10 years, which would be achieved by moving payouts to block grants; an $845 billion reduction to Medicare spending over the next decade that targets a decrease in wasteful spending via lower prescription drug costs; and — surprise — a roughly $26 billion decrease in Social Security spending over the next 10 years.
While Trump’s budget proposal aims to curtail a number of perceived inefficiencies with the Social Security program, the bulk of the savings ($10 billion total between 2020 and 2029) are expected to be realized from a single change to the Social Security Disability Insurance program.
As of January 2019, according to the Social Security Administration (SSA), 10.15 million people were receiving a Disability Insurance benefit payment each month, 8.52 million of whom were long-term disabled workers. Of course, proving a long-term disability to the SSA, assuming you have the required lifetime work credits to receive a disability benefit, isn’t a flip-of-the-switch process. Rather, the average time from application to approval can take around five months.
However, not all disability recipients file their claims with the SSA right away. Should you choose to apply for Social Security Disability Insurance long after you’ve actually become disabled, you may be able to receive retroactive benefits. These retroactive disability benefits would cover the time period from when you actually became disabled through when you applied for Social Security Disability benefits, with a maximum collectible period of 12 months.