Texas Disability Determination Services: A Study of Unemployment Rates, Disability Application Rates, and Fraud Referral Rates
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The purpose of this research project is to explore three areas of behavior and decision-making pertaining to the Disability Determination Services program. Specifically, this paper will research (1) the relationship between unemployment rates and Texas Disability Determination Services application rates from 2000 to 2009; (2) the relationship between Texas Disability Determination Services application rates and allowance rates from 2000 to 2009; (3) and the relationship between application rates and fraud referral rates to the Cooperative Disability Investigations (CDI) program from Texas Disability Determination Services from 2001 to 2009. This is accomplished by visual inspections of linear figures based on data from Texas DDS, unemployment data, and CDI data. Method: After reviewing relevant literature, a conceptual framework was developed, allowing the working hypothesis to be generated. The literature and conceptual framework are based on individual level behavior. Based on the individual level behavior the working hypotheses are developed to examine aggregate level data for applicants and agency decision-making. Theories and concepts for the working hypotheses are derived and supported by the literature presented in Chapter II. To fulfill the research methodology, quantitative data is collected from government agency's online databases. Linear figures represent each working hypothesis, displaying the research results. There is a visual inspection and discussion of the data to test the hypotheses and establish trends over time. Findings: Based on the information provided by the data along with visual inspection positive support was found for each hypothesis. Research results in addition to comprehensive literature support the working hypotheses of a positive relationship over time between Texas unemployment rates and Texas DDS application rates; a negative relationship between Texas DDS application rates and allowance rates; and a positive relationship between Texas DDS application rates and CDI fraud referral rates.