Disability, General, Retirement, Survivors

Trust Fund Reserve Gains One Year for Projected Depletion Date

July 23, 2015 • By

Reading Time: 2 Minutes

Last Updated: August 19, 2021

A person delivers a packet of papers to a second person.By now, you’ve probably heard that this year marks the 80th anniversary of the signing of the Social Security Act.  In case you didn’t know, this year is also the 75th anniversary of the payment of the first monthly benefits.

And, today, the Social Security Board of Trustees released the 75th annual report to Congress on the financial status of the Social Security trust funds.

As a quick refresher: The Social Security trust funds include the Old Age and Survivors Insurance (OASI) fund and the Disability Insurance (DI) fund. Benefits to retired workers and their families, and to families of deceased workers, are paid from the OASI trust fund. Benefits to disabled workers and their families are paid from the DI trust fund.

The report shows that, combined, the funds now have an additional year – from 2033 to 2034 – before their reserves are depleted. The Old Age and Survivors fund alone also gets an extra year from 2034 to 2035.

Some factors that led to this improvement include (1) faster growth in average wages in the future, because of slower growth in employees’ private health insurance cost – due at least in part to provisions of the Affordable Care Act, and (2) improvements in how we project the earnings of American workers by age.

The DI fund is still projected to deplete its reserves late in 2016. After that, the income collected through taxes will be enough to pay only 81 percent of the scheduled benefits. So, an adjustment to maintain full disability benefits is needed soon.

The president has proposed temporarily reallocating more of the total Social Security payroll tax rate to the disability fund to give Congress more time to consider comprehensive changes to the Social Security program as a whole.

The Social Security program is sustainable, but needs some adjustments. To keep the  program solvent after 2034, Congress could choose to increase payroll taxes by about one-third, reduce benefits by about one-fourth, or make some combination of these or other adjustments.

Because of the importance of Social Security to all Americans, we can be confident that Congress will make timely and well-considered adjustments, just as they have whenever needed since 1935.

Tags: , ,

See Comments

About the Author

Stephen C. Goss, Chief Actuary

Stephen C. Goss, Chief Actuary


  1. Dennis E.

    Why am I not getting the monthly amount I was told I would get when I retired in May 2017? I was told I would get about $50 less than what I qualified for until January 2018, when I would get the accrued amount due, and my future payments from January would be the correct amount. In January, the adjustment did not come, and I asked my local office why. They informed me the accrued amount would not be figured until August 2018, at which time I would get the accrued amount would be paid and the corrected amount would come to me. It’s now August 2018 and I have not seen the accrued amount or the corrected amount. What gives?

    • Ray F.

      Hello Dennis. Unfortunately, but for security reasons, we do not have access to personal records in this blog. Please continue working with your local office. You can request to speak with the manager to see how we can help to expedite resolution of your situation. If you are unable to visit the local office, you can call our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213, 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 in the week. Thanks.

  2. DR D.

    God bless SS

  3. pharmgal89

    I remember when I began working 30 years ago. The deduction was to be set aside for my future. At this point I would be happy to have that money back dollar for dollar regardless of COLA. It is very frustrating to feel that I won’t get back what I put in when I see things given away to non-contributors in my profession. We need change STAT!

  4. Kathryn A.

    I find your propaganda appalling. You of all people know that our government is monetarily sovereign and therefore can never run out of money nor ever be voluntarily bankrupt. Why are you so committed to spreading such fears? Why would do you advocate for putting millions of future and current beneficiaries into needless poverty? Have you no shame? For those who are reading this and are not aware the US Government, as sole issuer of its currency can never go broke. The Government’s deficit = private sector’s surplus. The US Government can no more run out of its own money much in the same way a score keeper at a game can run out of points it can award. For a more in depth explanation of how our government’s finances work here is a YouTube video of Warren Mosler on MMT: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JGuNpqYBkZk&t=93s

  5. Lane G.


    Getting kicked out of my home at 17 by the new stepmom, after my Mom passed was bad! I survived. Nobody, not even my husband during our marriage, financially supported me. Years later, with a Masters Degree ( No student loans…), and extreme determination and hard work, I saved almost $500k.

    Then, when I was laid off with other colleagues by the new CEO, 2 weeks later I got sick and took to my bed – for two years, only awake 4 hours a day. Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue! During that time, my significant other of 11 years, taking advantage of my illness, spent and stole my life savings. He then moved to Greece, where he has dual citizenship.

    I’m passing this story on to you for one reason only! If I had not been approved for SSDI, only God knows what would have become of me. My illness is severe, my old life is gone. Even with Medicare, the pharmaceuticals get most of my money.

    There are so many things to fix with our country; including health care fraud, self serving politicians without any sense of fiduciary responsibility, and big businesses lacking basic humanity – we CANNOT let them steal what we have left of our future, and our families future, what we worked for and what is rightfully ours! We must SPEAK OUT, or suffer the consequences. No one is immune.

  6. Jim

    This is a joke, right? Congress ‘s capable hands, who writes this insanity? It has to be a politician. I don’t care how often someone tries to argue that the “borrowed funds” were actually not borrowed or somehow these funds were paid back, I call B.S. Now, it is such a mess, Congress wants us to bail them out of it. Again I call B.S. The government takes in over 3 trillion in revenue, balance the damn budget, do your jobs and stop whining about we can’t do this or we can’t cut that. Maybe they need “Larry the cable guy” to give them a little speech. Why are we putting up with this political system? It started out the greatest idea ever conceived and now it has been corrupted by our political process, all three branches of government, lobbyists, crooks and a few other factions. Why are we the people putting up with this bull-****. Talk about a disgruntled public, I think we are there!!!

  7. Joy W.

    I have the same consensus as others -I would like to be paid back for the amount they have stolen from myself and many others.

  8. Kat

    I am tired of the government using the SSA funds like their “get out of jail” card. they need to pay the “loan” with interest! We pay into Social Security and they are stealing it!!!

    • Ray F.

      Kat, 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.

  9. Joseph R.

    Thank You Debbie!

  10. Joseph R.

    I realise congress is part of this problem so is fraud. I have worked since I was 15 years old now I am fifty working with A chronic Illness still cannot get disability, also I have been A single father for 13 years.
    Why dont people accept responability if they can and work, I do for my son. Too many people are getting disability from ss for no reason like depression, alcoholism, and many other things that work would help them with not just sitting around waiting for a check that A problem for everyone unless they really cant work.

Comments are closed.