From the written testimony of Stephen Goss, Social Security's Chief Actuary, to the Social Security Subcommittee of the House Ways and Means Committee yesterday:
At the time of enactment [this year of changes designed to shore up the Disability Trust Fund], we estimated that the date of trust fund reserve depletion for DI [Disability Insurance] would be extended 6 years, from 2016 to 2022. In the 2016 Trustees Report, we now project that DI reserves will not deplete until 2023, largely due to the lower than expected recent level of benefit expenditures. Applications for disability benefits have been declining since 2010, and have continued to be below our prior projections.In fact, if you look at the full Trustees report, you'll find that there are three projections for each trust fund, the Low-Cost, Intermediate and High-Cost projections. The projection of a 2023 exhaustion date is the Intermediate projection. The High-Cost projection has an exhaustion date of 2020 and the Low-Cost projected exhaustion date is never.