On this day in 1940, a 65-year-old legal secretary named Ida May Fuller became the first monthly Social Security beneficiary. A few months earlier, she had stopped by her local Social Security office in Vermont to learn how the program works. She knew she had paid into Social Security but wasn’t sure if she would get anything back out. A clerk at the office helped her apply for retirement benefits. Continue reading
As we approach the new lunar year of the Rooster, we have a unique opportunity to alert our Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) seniors about Social Security benefits and eligibility — like the rooster issues its daily morning call.
I believe that we as a society are judged by how we care for the least among us, especially our elderly. Continue reading
Social Security has a strict definition of disability based on your inability to work and provide for yourself and your family. Disability benefits are available only to people with impairments so severe that they prevent any kind of significant, profitable work. Social Security pays only for total disability. No benefits are payable for partial disability or for short-term disability. Continue reading
January 16 was Martin Luther King, Jr. Day — a national holiday and a day of remembrance. Martin Luther King, Jr. dedicated his life to creating and fostering equal rights for African Americans, and he died during his efforts to make his dream a reality.
Many people commemorate this holiday by serving their community and giving to others who may be less fortunate. In many ways, this is what Social Security does every day, all year long. Continue reading
But … how much do you really know about this program? Continue reading
Every payday, you have Federal Insurance Contributions Act (FICA) and Self-Employed Contributions Act (SECA) taxes deducted from your paycheck. Nearly all of these contributions are used to pay Social Security benefits to more than 60 million retired, disabled, and widowed workers and their children, as well as to Medicare beneficiaries. A very small amount also helps pay for the work it takes to manage Social Security programs.
Providing Social Security services to the public is a big job. We have fewer than 64,000 employees in offices across the country handling millions of transactions yearly — taking applications, answering questions in person and on the phone, verifying benefit amounts, and reviewing appeals, among other things. The cost of doing these services is less than one penny out of each dollar paid in FICA and SECA taxes, which is a very good value. Continue reading
Every worker’s dream is to enjoy a secure retirement. Social Security is here to secure today and tomorrow. Part of that commitment is ensuring you have the most up-to-date information when you make your retirement decisions.
As the bells ring in the New Year, they also bring changes for new Social Security retirement beneficiaries. Full retirement age is 66 and two months for people born 01/02/1955 through 01/01/1956. They are eligible to receive permanently reduced retirement benefits when they turn 62 in 2017. Continue reading
It’s 2017, and that means you might be one more year closer to retirement. Whether you’re at your very first job or wrapping up a successful career, there are always new things to learn about when it comes to saving for the future. So why not make retirement planning part of your New Year’s resolution!
Putting money in a high yield savings account (if you can find one) is always smart, but you can do even more. The U.S. Department of the Treasury now offers a retirement savings option called myRA. There’s no minimum to open the account, you can contribute what you can afford, and you can withdraw funds with ease. To learn more about myRA, visit www.myra.gov/.
Hopefully, your employer chips in a little. An employer-sponsored retirement plan or 401(k) can be a useful way to set aside funds for retirement, especially if your employer offers matching funds on what you invest. If you don’t work for an employer that offers this type of plan, there are many other plans designed to help you save for retirement.
From solo 401(k)s to traditional and Roth IRAs, there are programs designed to fit a multitude of budgets. The earlier you start to save, the more funds you’ll have ready for retirement.
And, as always, there is Social Security, which is funded by taxes you pay while you work. To get estimates of future benefits and check your earnings record for accuracy, you can create a my Social Security account at www.socialsecurity.gov/myaccount.
Along with giving up bad habits, this New Year start a good habit that can make a lasting, positive change.