Social Security Funded Until 2034, and About Three-Quarters Funded for the Long Term; Many Options to Address the Long-Term Shortfall

Trustee's ReportThe Social Security Board of Trustees today released its 76th annual report to Congress on the financial status of the Social Security trust funds.  As a trustee of Social Security funds, I work with the other trustees to ensure the public is informed about the status of Social Security’s finances for the short term and over the next 75 years.

Workers earn their Social Security benefits by contributing through deductions from their paychecks. The Social Security trust funds include the Old Age and Survivors Insurance (OASI) fund, which pays benefits to retired workers and their families and to the families of deceased workers; and the Disability Insurance (DI) fund, which pays benefits to disabled workers and their families.

Today’s report shows that, as a whole, Social Security is fully funded until 2034, and after that it is about three-quarters financed. Considered alone, the DI Trust Fund is projected to become depleted sooner than the combined Social Security funds. I am pleased that legislation signed into law by President Obama last November averted a near-term shortfall in DI. With that small, temporary reallocation of the Social Security contribution rate, the DI fund will now be able to pay full benefits until 2023, and the retirement fund alone will be adequate into 2035. It is important that Congress act well before 2023 in order to strengthen the finances of the program as a whole.

Young people frequently ask: “Will Social Security be there for me?” I take this question very seriously, and I am sure Social Security will be there in the future. Its total cost is now about 5% of the national economy, or GDP. That will rise to about 6% when all of the baby boomers are retired. That increase, 1% of GDP, is less than the nation’s increase in spending for public education when baby boomers were children.

As President Obama recently said:

“Fewer and fewer people have pensions they can really count on, which is why Social Security is more important than ever. We can’t afford to weaken Social Security. We should be strengthening Social Security. Not only do we need to strengthen its long-term health, it’s time we finally made Social Security more generous, and increased its benefits so that today’s retirees and future generations get the dignified retirement that they’ve earned.”

Like the President, I am confident we will rise to the challenge. Social Security is an earned benefit—a benefit that is critically important to the people who receive it. It is a foundation of economic security when workers and their families face what Franklin D. Roosevelt called “the hazards and vicissitudes of life.” It is the nation’s most effective poverty prevention program, keeping 21 million people out of poverty. So when we talk about Social Security financing, it’s not just a budget exercise – it’s our retirement system and our family economic security system, now and for the future.

Lawmakers have many policy options to address the shortfall: increasing contribution rates, lifting the cap on earnings subject to contributions, drawing on other revenue sources, lowering benefit amounts, or a combination of changes. Social Security’s independent actuaries have analyzed over 100 policy proposals from lawmakers on both sides of the aisle, and those results are available on the Actuary’s website. Lawmakers should act soon to address the long-term shortfall and preserve the reserves that yield interest income to help pay future benefits.

I am confident about the future of Social Security. We look forward to continuing to serve the American people by delivering the foundation of economic security that we know as Social Security


208 thoughts on “Social Security Funded Until 2034, and About Three-Quarters Funded for the Long Term; Many Options to Address the Long-Term Shortfall

      • the cost of living should include anything that we as seniors have to survive.
        I want to know WHY Califonria taxes the social security payments. Didn’t we already pay taxes through our payroll checks??? Arizona does not tax social security payments. Why California, Why?

          • Because California taxes EVERYTHING! We just moved out of California to Washington state and couldn’t be happier!

          • Some of us can’t even afford to move, still locked into a great mortgage and could not afford these new higher monthly payments.. It is a valid concern. Please do not pass it off with a quick response.

          • Actually if you make over $25,000 in a year you will get taxed by the State of California.

          • Johnny R is correct. California does not Tax SS benefits, no matter what your income is. The Feds do tax it if you make over a limited figure.

          • You have to know the laws moron. Everywhere you go you need a residency-green card-citizenship in order to obtain any benefits. What is probably just is to give social help as a temporary fix not in a long term basis. As a taxpayer I see with disolucionment how Americans who can work and earn a living want to use the system to survive

      • i always say jusst becuse i have to use a wheal chair i still have to wipe my ass. $10.00 for toliet paper if ur lucky to find a sale

        • We should get something like wic for seniors to help with food like milk, bread, not whole wheat, some seniors cant tolerate it, eggs, cheese, butter, cereal , peanut butter.

          • I agree. We are feeding thousands and thousands of illegal parents who come here to have their children born born here and YOU KNOW they are eating the food that is supposed to be for the children. One customer I waited on, who was from another country was using a food stamp card. He had lots of food and non food items. When his bill was run up and he ran his card through he had a balance to pay. He asked me if any of that balance left over was for food. I told him that I did not know. And his response was “well, I’m not paying for my own food!” He certainly had enough non-food items to pay for himself, just not food!!!

        • Your right. Social security if primarily for seniors and COL should be determined on the average Senior needs. Food, Medical Transportaion etc.

      • Yes, food costs should be included as nutrition is so important to health. Seniors
        don’t have incomes to keep up with the rising cost of food.
        Also, the 1980 Windfall Act is
        a disgrace to widows and widowers.
        I am a retired teacher and because of that I do not get
        one penny of my husband’s
        social security. He paid in for
        55 years !!!!! Joe passed away
        of cancer in 2012. He could not
        take the refinanced mortgage,
        property tax, etc. with him to
        heaven. I know he would of if
        such a thing was possible.
        Please help widows to get
        their spouses social security
        money which the husbands
        hoped for them to have their
        remaining years on earth.
        Thank you for listening and
        trying to help!

          • Ray ,how is it that the population of this country has grown since Soc.Sec.was started, by MILLIONS! Then tell us why the system is going under? With the increase of workers,is an increase of Soc.Sec.income deducted from their pay checks! Your math does NOT ADD UP!

      • The news media said the cost of living for Social Security was based on gas prices, since when does gas effect this number. Nothing has gone down any where except the size of the packages of food for a higher cost. Why in the world would not food and cost of health care effect the cost of living. Yes, gas did go down for a short time but of course it is back on the rise but not social security, that is the stupendous thing I have ever heard of , gas effecting whether there should be a raise in social security or not. Seriously, which political party had a say in that decision. Rich keep getting richer and the middle class keeps getting poorer. Forget the poor people, that number just keeps getting bigger and bigger.

      • Totally agree with that! By the time I pay my bills, & I’m very very basic, rent, electric, & phone, I have $100 left! With the cost of food today, I can’t even afford to eat yet good old government says I make to much for food stamps. $100 is like a $20 today and I don’t drive due to my injuries! Have no family, so it costs me $ just to go and get food???????

        • So true, I agree..they don’t think babyboomers know what’s going on, but for years they have been robbing us under the table..and yes wr all need to receive food stamps for better living..

    • Why are taxpayers paying for this pro Obama propaganda? why is the SSA wasting our money on this . It violates the Hatch ACT!!


      • Sadly, many low-information posts are here that do not reflect a basic understanding of how government works. Things will never get better if everyone is awash in misinformation. It is even worse if you yourself are the agent of that misinformation.

        Congress determines the COLA formula. One party is even thinking about switching to another method that the vast majority of the time will be even stingier. People vote for that party when they get angry at government. How does that help you?

        It is time to wake up. If you want to fix things, you must focus on who you send to Congress and then question why you sit around complaining to each other rather than hold those you elect accountable when they don’t do what you want. Your blog posts cannot fix anything. Executive agencies are unable to fix what only Congress or the courts can mandate. In a way, what has happened can be said to be a direct result of people’s contempt for government. As a citizen given the gift of the greatest democracy the world has seen you should be participating and increasing your knowledge rather than complaining futilely to each other. When you don’t hold anyone accountable they will instead do the legislative bidding of those who contribute large funds to campaigns or to well-funded think tanks and organizations that mostly serve to take your democracy away and do the bidding of the smallest segment of our population: the very well off. Stop voting against your own financial interests and get involved! You can just make noise or you can make a difference! Then government will work for you instead.

        • You send to Congress the people who are telling you what you want to hear. You know that it all changes once they get to Washington!

  1. What’s the latest news, if any in this zany political year, about an increase for 2017 in our Social Security “retirement” benefit ? We received “Zilch” in the way of an inflation-offsetting adjustment for 2016, and I’ve seen ugly rumors of the figure for 2017 being a meager 1 % !!! Do you have any news to share?

      • Really flushing Seniors and disabled down the drain . It would help if the government kept their sticky fingers out of using it for unrelated reasons.

        • Obama just took a very very large amount out of social security to finance Obama care and is not going to pay it back. there are a large number of iou’s in social security that never get paid.

          • Carolyn, Social Security is a pay-as-you-go system. Social Security taxes collected from today’s workers pay the benefits of today’s retirees. Any funds in excess of what is needed to pay today’s benefits are invested in special issue, U.S. Government, interest-bearing securities. This investment – the purchase of U.S. Government securities – is what constitutes the “borrowing” that people are sometimes concerned about. Any funds that have been “borrowed” from the Social Security Trust Funds have always been paid back in full, plus interest. Please check out our Trust Fund – Frequently Asked Questions page for more information.

      • We all need an increase of 7% to keep us afloat, e/one else get’s raises in higher places for doing nothing, we as a people deserve better, we have paid our dues and deserve to be treated as human beings, not yesterdays old news.

    • No one knows at this point. We have to be further down the road. From what I can see and since it is an election year 1.6% is a good estimate. .2% is not an actuarial possibility as the law is written.

  2. I now have to find supplement insurance as not eligible for medicaid because of being over 65. I dont have any other as only medicare what is the answer for other insurance

    • Private insurance companies will also underwrite your health care needs and you may not have to pay an additional premium. Some refer to this as medicare advantage or part C. Age is NOT a reason for you to lose Medicaid coverage, income is. There are millions of people on Medicare and they still have Medicaid, in fact Medicaid helps them to pay for their Medicare premiums, check that out.

    • You can get a Secondary Insurance. Call UNITED HEALTH CARE. They’re great! My room-mate has full Medicare benefits, plus State Medicade and United Health Care, which helps pay for everything the Government benefits do not. They have catalogs that come every 3 months with $80-$100 credits to be used for durable equiptment, (shower chairs, canes) vitamins, denture creams, lotions, diabetes needs, etc.
      insurance plan is free too, plus every 2 years, they cover Optical, glasses or contacts. Dental, covers even new set of dentures. United Health Care really took care of my room-mate and best part, since he only gets SSDI, it cost him $0 to join and he’s now been with them for 9 1/2 years. They just now started HOUSE CALLS PROGRAM, and he wouldn’t be on this earth if it wasn’t for all they do.

  3. Ms. Colvin,
    Thank you for your well written synopsis of the state of Social Security. It is not only informative but also reassuring that there are many options to cover any future shortfalls. With all of the fear mongering about so many issues today it is good to read a straight forward and factual report on the state of this invaluable government program. I always cringe when I hear it referred to as an “entitlement” as though hard working people have never made any contributions.
    Thank you for your fine service on this commission.

      • Agree. Rhetoric by some members of Congress consists primarily in “public relations” spin.
        While the wealthy believe in charity, they appear, for the most part, to grab headlines ensuring that the breadline and charity is to be preferred to entitlements. Privitizations of public benefits paid for is a possible aim, as public pensions are targets, at least for teachers in New York, so that fund “managers,” can get their hands on our contributions.

    • Dear Commissioner Colvin: thank you so very much for eloquently delivering the “exciting and excellent news” that SSA benefits will be available until 2034 plus… Thank you again and to the SSA family — for serving the people of the United States of America. God bless all of you!

  4. Do you have any word on the amount of any projected anti-inflation adjustment for 2017 in our basic “retirement” SS benefit ? As I’m sure you know, the amount for 2016 was ZERO ! and we’ve seen hints of a majestic, magnificent total of 1 % for 2017 !!

    I know it’s in the hands of Congress (Boy, are we in trouble !!) – would be good to get some positive news

    Thanks –

  5. I am dubious of this reassurance. It reminds me of the story of the man falling off the Empire State Building yelling in the open windows of floors 30-36 ” I”m not hurt yet” Trusting a government that has allowed the debt to go from $11T to nearly $20T in eight short years is beyond my capability.

    • You are wise to feel that way. All this talk about SSA solvency has been going on for 2 decades with little in the way of changes. It is a moot point how much is in the trust funds if the government goes bankrupt. The trust funds are not exempt from a collapse of the government if it is unable to service its overall debt.

  6. It would be fully funded until well over 2024 if obama would pay back the millions he took out to fund his obama care! Wake up people we are being robbed blind and I’m sure killary will not do much better for us seniors! I will only be 89, if I live that long by the time this article says, as I read it, will become unfunded. Then what will happen to me????? yikes

    • That’s 2034, and the borrowing from the trust funds has been going on since Johnson borrowed to finance the Vietnam war. As I said above, none of this matters if the government goes bankrupt.

      • Social Security is a pay-as-you-go system. Social Security taxes collected from today’s workers pay the benefits of today’s retirees. Any funds in excess of what is needed to pay today’s benefits are invested in special issue, U.S. Government, interest-bearing securities. This investment – the purchase of U.S. Government securities – is what constitutes the “borrowing” that people are sometimes concerned about. Any funds that have been “borrowed” from the Social Security Trust Funds have always been paid back in full, plus interest. Please check out our Trust Fund Frequently Asked Questions page for more information.

  7. Does any body can tell me what would be the reason a person can be reduced her/his social security benefits retirement up to 50%!!! less!!!?

      • If a person owes child support arrearages when he/she begin receiving social security, up to 50% can be taken from their retirement benefits.

        • Hi Norma. We can withhold Social Security benefits to enforce your legal obligation to pay child support, alimony or restitution. However, State laws determine a valid garnishment order. Click here to read more.

    • If you become employed (even part-time) and make over a certain amount of money per month, your SSDI payments will be decreased by $1 for every $2 you earn over that amount. I haven’t read up on that in a few years, but as far as I know, it’s still that way.

      • Yes it is, I was told that by a social security worker, which is ridiculous when you are trying to make ends meet, by a higher standard of living because we dont get yearly colas, many of us don’t play the lottery, so we don’t mind taking on a part time job..the government needs to stop suppressing us and let us live and make our own decisions on how we want to get additional income, this is suppose to be the land of the free or is it?

      • Thank you for your comment. Social Security strongly supports those individuals who want to return to the work force while supplementing their disability benefit income. We have Work Incentives that allow people to work and still receive their benefits. A person may still be eligible for disability benefits under the Social Security Disability Insurance program if they work. However, their earnings cannot exceed a certain amount. This is called the Substantial Gainful Activity or SGA limit. In 2016, the SGA limit is $1,130 per month (or $1,820 for blind applicants). In addition to the amount of money you make, Social Security may also look at the number of hours you’re able to work. We hope this information helps.

        • Hi Laura, I think the SSA worker gave you a brief synopsis of what would happen to your SSI benefits if you returned to work. People on SSI often have no or little work history. People on SSDI or people who have paid into the system, get a 9 month trial work period where they can make as much as they want while trying to see if they are well enough to return to work. Check out the SSA Ticket to Work program. and get free help in returning to work AND tracking your benefits. It is the BEST government program out there!!!!

  8. entire social services in USA is 50 years behind N Europe medical pension educational senior citizens etc etc

    It is what it is , sadly my kids are here if they wernnt Id be in europe next week

  9. This is all lame because it does not matter what the government says, they will do what they want not what is good for the people who actually paid it in. Obama is a joke and so are most of the politicians. They are suppose to work for us, but they actually work for themselves. They always seem to get raises and we get left out in the cold. The only cure is to make the politicians pay in SS and then have to draw it and live on it and they might do a better job on managing it.

    • wow i love that comment, they need to pay in SS and we seniors live off of it. they will not like it at all, we have to wonder where our next meal coming from, are we cutting our med’s in half so it can last.

      • I’m afraid most all living things are parasitized by something…even bacteria fall prey to some viruses. You could draw an analogy to big business and the wealthy, for instance, who make the public pay for their financial mistakes but twist right wing media and politicians to trick voters into making them above the law, all while reaping huge fortunes. Yes, they really are like human parasites, although I hesitate to apply such an awful term to any human being. But I see your point.

  10. How come congressional( senator and representative) get automatic raise and we do not get or sometime do no get cost of living adjustment.

      • A lot of good that does to vote them out…. another group comes in just to be indoctrinated into the same way of thinking.. It’s a political cycle of madness….

      • It’s time to vote them out, they get to spend big time monies and live large, but we have to cut corners on e/thing, so we little guys keep suffering while their pockets get bigger.

    • It would solve nothing, without other legislated changes, we’d just end up paying out more negating the increased income.

  11. Quit taking money from Social Security to fund the disability component. Pony up and make all of the IOU’s good from the government today and quit rading SS to fund other government programs. With over $19 trillion in debt I do not have much faith in the givernment credit rating.

    • I worked my fair share and paid into Social Security. I now receive Disability payments every month; without it, I’d be living under a bridge, using the services YOUR taxes would be paying for. Is that what you want? All the disabled people to suffer even more?

      • The disability system needs to be fair to all participants in both systems. …Social Security should pay you proportionate to your built up benefits, and any additional needs supplemented by other relief systems at both state and federal levels. ….Supporting the disabled at the expense of the rest of the Social Security recipients is equivalent to theft!

      • Not at all.
        But I would like to see a lot of those disabled people helped so they can return to being a productive part of society. Some of these disabilities are treatable.
        And then there is the massive fraud side of the disability fund. I imagine if we were to eliminate just the fraud it would make a tremendous difference.

        • I have worked full-time for many years…18 of those years with MS…I now get SSDI and need to find an insurance by 9/1/16 that my husband and I can afford…He works, so no Medicaid for me….Even though I will probably get help from an organization to help pay for my injectable med, I am trying to find an insurance that won’t take my whole disability check each month. It’s like “they” want to take everything away from us that we have worked so hard to get. Thanks for letting me gripe!

  12. All people should pay social security on wages from their employer. If wages go up, so should the amount to social security.

    • That is basically what happens. Remember when you add people paying in you add to the number you pay out to, with a net effect of zero.

  13. If the government stops dipping in the social security funds there would be no issues it’s not the governments piggy bank

  14. What people forget, the reason there is a shortfall is because the government borrowed money from the fund and never paid it back. President Ronald Reagan fixed the Social Security shortfall. people forget these facts. and it is only because of bad practices that we gave this crisis. Any fix proposed in the future should include a restriction that the government may not for any reason borrow money from the fund. Otherwise we will face the situation again and again. Politicians don’t like to talk about the real reasons but it’s in the news media occasionally it needs to be brought to the Forefront and solved. Entitlement has become a bad word however when I grew up, I was told I did not have a choice that money would be contributed to Social Security and when I got to retirement age it would be there for me. For those who want to phase out Social Security then if you must do it, take gradual steps, perhaps a hundred year plan that way it is painless and you’re not going to hurt innocent people. I hear politicians say cut them off at the knees easy for them to say as they get a full retirement. Another good fix would be to give our politician the exact same Social Security plan that we have and nothing more! I doubt that there would be any Cuts if they had the same plan.

    • Sorry, but Social Security is NOT an “entitlement”. When I was working, I paid into the fund, just like you. I’m now getting a portion of what I paid in.

        • The contributions into the social security fund, if invested continuously over the typical 45 year work life from 21-66, conservatively would have resulted in at least quadrupling it’s original value. Therefore, no, you are not getting far more than you put in at all, but way less. If a credit card bill of $5000 paid back over 10 years’ costs are doubled at 18%, imagine a small lifelong $140,000 SS tax invested over 45 years? How about 300,000 invested over 45 years?

      • Johnny R is correct. California does not Tax SS benefits, no matter what your income is. The Feds do tax it if you make over a limited figure.

    • Ben, Social Security is a pay-as-you-go system. Social Security taxes collected from today’s workers pay the benefits of today’s retirees. Any funds in excess of what is needed to pay today’s benefits are invested in special issue, U.S. Government, interest-bearing securities. This investment – the purchase of U.S. Government securities – is what constitutes the “borrowing” that people are sometimes concerned about. Any funds that have been “borrowed” from the Social Security Trust Funds have always been paid back in full, plus interest. Please check out our Trust Fund Frequently Asked Questions page for more information.

      • Mr Fernandez, The only posts you comment on, involve when someone says something about the govt dipping in and taking funds out and not paying it back.
        You can keep posting your same comment over and over but your not being truthful to anyone.
        Its a fact that the millions that obama took to fund his worthless obamacare health care plan will never be paid back. Its been a sinking ship from day one. Thats why he lied over 30 times telling citizens “You can keep your own doctor”. He never intended affordable health care,he only intended to screw us with outrageously high premiums to everyone. As far as i am concerned he is a down right out THIEF.

  15. If by some miracle the politicians had to live on SS as we do it would be much higher with nice annual increases. They should have the same benefits, including insurance and term limits. GO TRUMP!!

    • The politicians have paid into Social Security since the 1983 Budget Omnibus Bill signed by President Reagan! Sorry you think Trump is the answer to all your problems…if he were to win you would find instead of platinum and diamonds he would only shower rusty pewter and terribly ugly low value zirconias upon you!

  16. i would like to know why is it so hard for senior ciz to get food stamp, they say we make to much are we get to much on our SS, we have people that can work oh in other words they are working and get food stamp, we the seniors have to pay for our insurance, med’s buy food pay rent and other things but we can’t get food stamps to help us out the U.S does not take care of their seniors, what’s real going on.

    • No they don’t…but they give fd stamps to e/body that comes to the US or to those who can’t stop having babies, it’s all a game, I’ve seen it…a petition needs to be started..

  17. As someone who has worked for the State of Missouri for 16-1/2 years (will be 17 when I retire in December of this year), and someone who has not received a raise in over 10 years, cutting back on the COLA is not the answer. We’re already living in poverty! I’ve had to cut back, cut back, cut back. Going to be hard to cut back even more when food and rent costs keep on increasing but the Government thinks we don’t need a Cost of Living Increase. Whoever dipped their hands in the Soc. Sec. pot years ago ~ when it was set up so that doing that was ILLEGAL ~ should be made to make REPARATIONS WITH INTEREST! Yeah, that would be the Congress of the United States!

    • They have always been crooked, but they don’t think we know this, for years they have kept us in the dark…they panicked when they realized that all babyboomers were not going to wait until they were 70 yrs old to start drawing their benefits, so now they are fearful about the shortfall.

  18. Soy. Un ciudadano US.,Que percibo 320.lo como retiro se entiende se entiende que con esta cantidad no vive nadie, el problema es que mi sra.tiene un partimos de 15 22 horas ahora nos AN quitado una cantidad pequeña 111 dólares como suplementario y 89 a 92 DOLLARES que recibíamos de Children family nos AN quitado ambas cosas con el ingreso de mi SRA pagamos la vivienda 859.00 dólares los demás se paga seguro de carro 245.00 dólares gasolina ,45.00 dólares semanales hoy recibimos del gobierno estatal 16.00 yo digo por que no se regula los beneficios a los que se AN retirado con cantidades de de 320.00 a. 350.00 a. 1,000.00 incluyendo el suplementario esto beneficia a las personas de bajos ,en cambio los que se retiran de trabajo estatal con 10 años su retiro es mucho más alto y a veces el doble. ,yo señor comicios adolescentes que mi sugerencia es válida , me piden cada cierto tiempo los recibos de pago y no me resuelven nada,en la oficina de administración del seguro social deje el vierNew pasado y me quedaron en llamar el lunes pasado esto me lo dijo la supervisora miliar Maria mucho agradecería los gastos de comida AN subido y nosotros solo recibimos. 8.00 dólares cada uno mensual que se debe tomar en cuenta el gasto por comida mi SRA tiene 70 año y voy cumplir 82 años gracias por la atención a la presente.

    • Speak english. Your in America. Recently a house in my neighborhood was put up for sale. Within a week 2 big suvs with blacked out windows pulled into the driveway. 8 young men got out and 3 men in suits. My neighbors,my wife and i were sitting on the porch drinking coffee when we noticed the plates on the vehicles had govt on them.
      One neighbor decided to go over and see what was happening. He talked to one of the men in a suit. The rest had gone in the house. After a few mins he came back and was visibly upset. He told us the 8 men were syrian refugees. The govt bought the house for them!!
      Since that day we also found out that each of those 8 men was recieving 5,000$ a month from SSA along with healthcare and food stamps!
      If that is true and correct its an outrage. My wife and i barely make ends meet. How could these men receive any SSA when they are not entitled to receive anything from SSA when americans have worked their entire lives putting into it and we dont even get any where close to 5,000$ a month?.

      • Under current law, refugees may be eligible for federally funded programs that make time-limited, needs-based assistance upon entry to the United States. States or local government can establish these assistance plans. Please be informed that the maximum Social Security benefit payment amount for a person retiring this year at the full retirement age of 66 would be $2,639. In 2016, the monthly maximum payment under the Supplemental Security Income (SSI) for an eligible individual is $733. For more information about the refugees assistance programs, please see our Program Operating Manual Section on Refugees. Thanks.

    • Thank you for your comment Marjory. The maximum benefit payment for someone retiring at his or her full retirement age in 2016 would be $2,639. To see a broad range of policy options that would address Trust Fund solvency and other issues related to Social Security benefits and financing visit the Actuary’s website. Thanks !

  19. Has anyone here ever have SS tell you that the money you recieve is not to live off of? I’m 36 disabled/handicapoed with a terminal illness with several comorbilitys. My disease is progressive & debilitating… I am powerchair bound on some days to get to & from dr appts and the others hospital bed bound at home. I “earn to much for food stamps” & have been on a housing waiting list for years. I live check by check with my children & no help financially from anyone. I do have homecare services but have called SS and tell them how is this possible that with rent, utilities, food, and the other things that people use on a daily bases ie toilet paper, toothpaste, deoderant, laundry soap ect and then food that every time I turn around the price keeps going up. I really really try to keep it together for my 2 twelve year olds but I’m getting to that breaking point!!

  20. everybody want to complain about social security some people fail to realize is that you only get what you put in if you had a minimum wage job all your life you will not receive much from social security and the formular they use is your highest 35 years no matter if you work more than 35 years and if you only work 25 then you will get 0 for the other 10 years until you understand how they compute social security you will e unhappy they start with a formular sheet for every one once you turn 62 and they take your highest 35years no matter if you worked 50 years and you are capped at what ever year social security is capped example if the max social security was in 1975 was 7800 dollars and you made 9000 that year you can show 7800 because after 7800 they didn’t take out social security taxes own you anymore and every year there is a cap like for 2016 he cap is 118500 so if you make 400000 they only going to take social security out of the cap amount the rest you do no pay social security tax on so if some one born in 1953 made the max earnings his whole life his social security at full retirement would be 2630 using the work sheet so for those people who like to complain make sure you have all the facts first i learned all of this from research

  21. Everybody want to complain about social security,some people fail to realize, that you only get what you put in. If you had a minimum wage job all your life you will not receive much from social security. Also the formula they use is your highest 35 years no matter if you work more than 35 years. if you only work 25 years, then you will get 0 for the other 10 years. Until you understand how they compute social security you will be unhappy. They start with a formula sheet for everyone once you turn 62. They take your highest 35years no matter if you worked 50 years and you are capped at what ever year social security is capped. Example: if social security max in 1975 was 7800 dollars and you made 9000 that year you can only show 7800 because after 7800 they didn’t take out anymore social security taxes. Every year there is a cap like for 2016 the cap is $118,500 so if you made $400,000 SS is only going to take social security out of the cap amount which is $118,500 and the rest you do not pay social security tax on. So now lets just say some one born in 1953 made the max earnings his whole life, his social security check at full retirement monthly would be $2,630 using the work sheet. So, for those people who like to complain make sure you have all the facts first, I learned all of this thru research.

    • Thank you for sharing. Wondering if your research showed how a person could see how they did each of the 35years of working life? Also what are the benefits/or not of lifting the cap?
      Thank you..,,

    • Everyone is entitled to their opinion and I welcome that, this is diversity, we all need to vent, it helps each and everyone to understand each others dilemma with compassion.

    • This is how we figure your Social Security retirement benefit: We base Social Security benefits on your lifetime earnings. We adjust or “index” your actual earnings to account for changes in average wages since the year the earnings were received. Then Social Security calculates your average indexed monthly earnings during the 35 years in which you earned the most. If the individual does not have 35 years of earnings, we will use all of the earnings on the record. We apply a formula to these earnings and arrive at your basic benefit, or “primary insurance amount.” This is how much you would receive at your full retirement age — 65 or older, depending on your date of birth. For your convenience, we have a variety of calculators to help you plan for the future.

  22. What is being done to recover the 7.6 trillion dollars that Congress has literally illegally taken from our Social Security Fund?

    • Hi James. Social Security is a pay-as-you-go system. Social Security taxes collected from today’s workers pay the benefits of today’s retirees. Any funds in excess of what is needed to pay today’s benefits are invested in special issue, U.S. Government, interest-bearing securities. This investment – the purchase of U.S. Government securities – is what constitutes the “borrowing” that people are sometimes concerned about. Any funds that have been “borrowed” from the Social Security Trust Funds have always been paid back in full, plus interest. Please check out our Trust Fund Frequently Asked Questions page for more information.

    • Yes james thats a good question. But all the questions are answered with the same answer. “Social Security is a pay as you go…blah blah blah.

  23. We hear that Democrats have agreed to target the disabled yet again, possibly simply closing cases, cutting them off. We really need more information about this, but while media do keep people updated on retirement benefits, they tend to disregard disability benefits. Because this does present a potentially life-threatening situation, it would be nice to inform people about plans for Social Security Disability.

    • Thank you for your comment. The Annual Trustees Report shows that, as a whole, Social Security is fully funded until 2034, and after that it is about three-quarters financed. Considered alone, the DI Trust Fund is projected to become depleted sooner than the combined Social Security funds. Legislation signed into law by President Obama last November averted a near-term shortfall in DI. With that small, temporary reallocation of the Social Security contribution rate, the DI fund will now be able to pay full benefits until 2023, and the retirement fund alone will be adequate into 2035. It is important that Congress act well before 2023 in order to strengthen the finances of the program as a whole. Social Security’s independent actuaries have analyzed over 100 policy proposals from lawmakers on both sides of the aisle, and those results are available on the Actuary’s website. Thanks !

  24. Note to OD: It’s incorrect to say that “you only get what you put in.” Social Security is not, and was never designed to be, a personal savings account. Millions of elderly women who were never in the workforce, paying in, were able to survive because they qualified for Social Security. Remember that Social Security was established in an era when Americans had very different priorities, and a sense of altruism.

    • If SS is a collective account to help everyone have monies to retire on, how does it determine what each contributor gets at time of retirement? If OD is correct in his research, then having a minimum paying job ( which most folks have today) is not going to help you with retirement. You are right in what SS was created for bc many widowed and sick folks that never or hardly contributed to the fund get SS. The adjustments that need to be made is in the increase in living expenses. The era of 1953-2016 shows a great abyss in what the dollar has turned into. Our American dollar is linked directly to government and the Federal Reserve, and their decisions.
      Yes the money that was taken out of the fund should be returned but that will only help the future existence of the SS, not individual amounts. SS is part of a retirement plan, savings count for another part and pensions the last part. I don’t include investments like 401ks bc they have shown to be of little help to average Anericans who ( not educated with Wall Street) have gambled away must of their retirements.
      There are a couple of things that can make retiring easier:
      1. Prescription drugs must come down in price.
      2. Increases in cost of living must match the power of the dollar.
      3. The very wealthy should not receive SS.
      4. No Senior should need a supplemental in the future. All contributions during a 35year working life should cover medical expenses.
      5. Minimum wages should increase so that contributions can be greater in order to offset the affects of a lifetime of low paying jobs when retiring.
      6. Once retired, there should be no increases in rent, insurances, nor medications for anyone on a FIXED INCOME.
      Lastly, there should be a move forward for all of us to save our monies much more aggressively going forward. The idea of buying everything bc it’s “cheap” robs us all of our desire to enjoy a happy retirement.

      • Social Security was designed as a “supplemental” retirement income. That means you need savings to draw from in your retirement years, and SS supplements that.

      • Sorry Evie: What you are suggesting is discrimination just because people have money, so no they also deserve their money just like you and us.

  25. I am in need for dental & vision Insurance like RIGHT NOW! & with my SS Retirement I can’t Afford any, even if I could squeeze a lil something a month out of my monthly funds to try & grt them I don’t know if I could keep the payments up all the time for (2) people, i’ve received several types of mail from different insurance companies that wants me to insure with them but there cost is too high for me & my spouse put together, I receive Medicare prt. A & B, but I need prt. D that cover dental & vision for the two of us which I can’t afford, I have to tooth that broken off @ the gum, also my partial done wore dwn to the metal & ea day I hope & Pray it doesn’t break on me if it does I will be in a pickle (words of expression ) I am in really need of these insurance, and as far as my eyes, I have what you call a disease call Uvenis & it’s in the eyes (both), but medicare pays for me seeing the doctor for it for so many visits, but not for other things like glasses etc. So if there is a insurance that’s less then a 100$ a month for both Ins. (Eyes & Vision ) Pls give me there where abt that will be in Me & Medicare approval, like I stated I do not have the funds for a LARGE AMT to be deducted from my monthly pension after rent, utilities, meds, Ins, food, etc. So you see where I am coming from. Thanks for your Help & Response if there are any.

    • Hello Matilda. Generally, Medicare does not cover most dental care. However, Medicare Part A (Hospital Insurance) will pay for certain dental services that you get when you are in a hospital. Part A can pay for inpatient hospital care if you need to have emergency or complicated dental procedures, even though the dental care is not covered. Visit to learn more about Medicare Part D, cost sharing programs and other important information. We hope this helps!



  28. If the Socialist Security System is so well funded, why do they continue to show prejudice and discriminate against Adult disabled children who marry able bodied persons? How does getting married to an able bodied person, make a disabled person any less disabled? Does marriage somehow cure my disability?

    Answer= no, marrying an able bodied person does NOT make me any less disabled.

    Answer= No, marriage to an able bodied person does not cure disability (but the Socialist Security system will use that EXCUSE to deny benefits).

    Even if you are disabled (like me) the Socialist Security system will deny you benefits, because of special “rules” they have on the books. These “Rules” have been put in place to help the Socialsit Security system, justify their actions of discriminating against married people.

    Even if you are legitimately 100 percent physically disabled, The Socialsit Security administration does NOT CARE! ” The law defines disability as the inability to engage in any substantial gainful activity (SGA) by reason of any medically determinable physical or mental impairment(s) which can be expected to result in death or which has lasted or can be expected to last for a continuous period of not less than 12 months.

    The Socialist Security System may find that one is completely and totally disabled, but as soon as you marry an “able bodied person”, somehow they miraculously cure you, of your disability.

    All of a sudden, you are not physically disabled anymore and not eligible for any benefits from these socialist. HOW DOES BEING MARRIED MAKE SOMEONE ANY LESS DISABLED?
    answer- IT DOES NOT. it’s just an idiotic rule that some bureaucrat (who has a personal hatrid of marriage and married people) came up with, to legitimize their prejudice and discriminatory practices.

    • sounds like you received benefits from a parent you were dependent on. When you marry, you are no longer dependent on your parent. The “adult child”—including an adopted child, or, in some cases, a stepchild, grandchild, or step grandchild—must be unmarried, age 18 or older, and have a disability that started before age 22. If he or she receives benefits as an adult disabled since childhood, the benefits generally end if he or she gets married.

  29. For a benefit that started out with the first recipients getting the benefits without contributing a dime, Social Security has come a long way. The biggest hurt to the program was the “loan” taken during the Great Reagan Administration, using the fact that the money was just “sitting there”. Based on the inability of the federal government to eliminate deficits in budget and allowing overgrowths in welfare programs, it is a wonder they want to not pay anything for the seniors in their time of need. When one retires, you go on a fixed income yet all cost keep going up. Certain costs should be mandated stable when one reaches retirement age but only for that individual. (e.g. rent for rest of life but new tenant even if relative pays current rent level) Taxes for income in retirement under $40,000 should tax free. As it stands right now, $25,000 is the maximum, including Social Security. I believe the reason California taxes Social Security is because of the large number of immigrants (legal illegal) who make low wages and pay minimum taxes if any. The only people who pay taxes actually made living wages during their work life. Then you get stuck paying for others when you retire. I am only angry about paying taxes on my social security because I had to retire 18 months earlier than my full retirement age so my benefit was cut. That cut would been paying the taxes I have to pay.

  30. All we have to do is get Congress to eliminate the cap on SS taxes. Too many (wealth) Americans complete this tax obligation in the first month or two of the year, paying ZERO after that.

    • Why should government violence force any one to pay into a retirement plan with negative returns? SS is a scam that should be dropped. And I have the Working Man Blues too.

  31. it would seem to me that if you want social security to be around beyond 2034, major reforms are needed, like the following:
    1: turn social security into a IRA type format, to where people’s number is a account number, and they earn 10% interest every month, as per the amount taken out of that person’s check.
    2: find a way through the budget to replace the missing $1.4 trillion.
    3: have social security protected by FDIC.
    4:put social security back into a trust fund instead of the general fund.

    • Thank you for your input Terry. In addition, Social Security’s independent actuaries have analyzed over 100 policy proposals from lawmakers on both sides of the aisle. Please visit the Actuary’s website.

  32. I think it is a crime that the feds use force to make us invest in their poorly funded retirement plan. Just imagine if I was to take money out of every one of your pay checks and force you into a retirement program that will never pay you back what you put into it. I would go to jail. Yet the FEDs today republican and democrat all seem to think they are above the law. They do many things to us that would be a crime if I was to do them to my neighbors. I do not see how this is seen as anything but extortion and crimes agains humanity.

  33. Social security benefits are decreased under the Windfall Elimination Act for anyone with uncovered wages. Is that money taken out and put elsewhere or just left in the social security fund?

  34. I am just glad I get my monthly benefit since I paid for it, so I don’t feel bad. Many people that have never worked get SSI and Medicaid and some of them live better than some of those that get Social Security, and to me that’s not the way it’s suppose to happen.

  35. I want to thank all of those that are working now because I need for you to work, so I can continue to get my benefits. I had to work while other got theirs, so now it’s your turn to provide for me. Isn’t America great.

  36. I would like to point out my love for your kindness giving support to people who should have help with this important topic. Your very own dedication to passing the message across appears to be definitely powerful and has truly allowed employees just like me to achieve their endeavors. Your new insightful facts indicates much to me and extremely more to my fellow workers. Best wishes; from each one of us.

  37. please were military family in a hardship jam we and mom me dathers sons mother in law and uncles need checks sent to us because of the case of being robbed by Samuel alexander I told some banks about it my last four social is 1333 date of birth is 07/05/1973 phone number 9046618273 soon going to school at devry and usaa going to pay for it but I need a boost give me a call help a mil.osd family out please tell trump about him he tried to robbed the tax code sams a pit load of crap

    • If you are eligible for benefits on your own record and divorced spouse’s benefits, we pay your benefit first. If the benefit on your ex-spouse’s record is higher, you will get an additional amount on your ex-spouse’s record so that the combination of benefits equals that higher amount. In some cases, a person could be entitled to more than one benefit at the same time and may receive a combination of benefits equaling a higher amount. For example, a person may be entitled, as a retired worker on his/her own record and also as a spouse, divorced spouse or widow on another record. However, this individual’s benefit amount can never exceed the highest of either benefit amount to which they are entitled to. Please see our Retirement Planner: If You Are Divorced, for more information.

  38. Cut the program. It is quite clear the government is unable to manage the money we gave them. They are coming up short and I am not about to give them more money because they used the money I gave them inappropriately

  39. It’s funny how people talk about illegal immigrants using food stamps, etc. Whenever I am in the market I see white and black americans buying full shopping carts worth of stuff, then using food stamps to pay. Then they drive off in a Cadillac Escalade. Who’s milking the system now?

  40. social security also pays for education grants, federal salaries, aircraft carriers, cotton subsidies, windmill farms, and 1000s Washington boondoggles

  41. A Mother is a Special creature created by a God who always thinks good for her children but never expects anything back from them. She always wishes to make her children independent and a better human being. To read more articles about mothers day, please visit here –

  42. I feel…that COLA, is a very important matter to address, here. Us…people need to be able to afford to pay for rent, water, utilities, food…

    Our necessities should come first, then…our desires!
    Most importantly…we need to have roofs over our heads, food to put on our tables, and clothes to put on our backs!
    We simply cannot do without those things!
    Most of all…we cannot do without Social Security!

    Whoever…said that it was outdated was just being just plain ignorant…and, stupid!

  43. I’m 26 and barely getting my life together, after a few wrong turns. I had an unfortunate upbringing but I’ve always been a person that sees things for what they are. The one thing is my generation and younger the kids that r to be the future has me on edge. I am a person that analyzes my surroundings and .man are kids lazy these daus. Don’t know value of the dollar. N certainly don’t know or even wanna know what it’s like to work for it. I’m in fear come 2042,3,4,etc will there be enough doctors, teachers or even a damn Pres. of our Natyion?? We really don’t know! There was a recent study; students in the 80’s, & 90’s were prepared for adulthood as adolescents. Adolescents today prove to be a lot more immature even though they appe ar to be more older than the adolescents circa 91′. Ani right or am I right???



  46. I would like to know, why I’ve been receiving only 75% of my benefits since 2009. As requested by the President, I took a 2 year early retirement. Since then I’ve been receiving 25% less as a result. I received a form letter a few months after I applied, saying I would receive my full benefits when I turned 65, which would be in 2011. That never happened. I put letter away but as usual it got misplaced or thrown out. Now I would like to know is there any way this could be correct

    • Unfortunately, and because of security reasons we do not have access to personal records in this blog and cannot answer your question at this time. One of our representatives should be able to provide you with an explanation. Please call our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213 for assistance. Representatives are available Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Generally, you will have a shorter wait time if you call later during the day or later in the week. Thanks!

  47. SSI is not enough! I started saving when I turned 25, some 40 years ago.OK but should hsvs done more,got mixed up with. Religoutf group that That hurt me financially kept me from a degreee that would have helped!

  48. Let me get this straight baby boomers are retiring and there taxing us at higher rate and there are more workers than there was twenty years ago and we make more money. So where is the money? There is always a spin on something.

  49. This blog fails to address the two trillion dollars plus surplus, and the fact that millennials out number baby boomers.

    If America stops rewarding corporate job outsourcing, there will be no problem in the future.

    Oh, then there are the funds paid by immgrants using stolen Sans, that are never collected.

    Congress should have no control over any aspect of the trust.

  50. I live in CA right now, but I want to move to Kingman, AZ. How do I find out what health plans are available there? Right now I have SCAN & it is great, but I don’t believe I can get it in AZ.

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