Academic journal article Social Security Bulletin

Black Lung Benefits

Academic journal article Social Security Bulletin

Black Lung Benefits

Article excerpt

The Black Lung benefit program established by the Federal Coal Mine Health and Safety Act of 1969 provides monthly benefit payments to coal miners totally disabled as a result of pneumoconiosis, to the widows of coal miners who died as a result of pneumoconiosis, and to their dependents. The Social security Administration (SSA) was responsible for the payment and administration of these Part B benefits (miner, survivor, and dependent) with respect to claims filed through June 30, 1973 (and certain survivor cases, before December 31, 1973).

On October 1, 1997, responsibility for maintenance and payment of Part B was transferred from SSA to the Department of Labor (DOL); SSA, however, maintains responsibility for conducting formal hearings necessary to resolve contested issues with respect to Part B claims. Only data on these Part B claims are reported in this Supplement. Part C claims are reported in the OWCP Annual Report to Congress, U.S. Department of Labor, Office of Workers' Compensation Programs.

Under the Black Lung Benefits Act of 1972, DOL was assigned jurisdiction over Part C benefits, generally claims filed July 1, 1973, and later. Different financing provisions are applicable to these claims.

Legislation enacted on November 2, 2002, (Public Law 107-275) transferred permanently the responsibility for all Black Lung claims (Parts B and C) to the Office of Workers' Compensation Programs (OWCP) of the Department of Labor. The Social security Administration will only continue to handle a small number of pending Part B appeals cases on a reimbursable basis. …

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