According to the Social Security Administration, 94 percent of American workers are covered under Social Security. Here are some facts about this important program.
WHO PAYS? Social Security is mostly funded through a payroll tax. Employees and employers each pay 6.2 percent of wages up to $106,800. Self-employed individuals pay the combined rate of 12.4 percent.
WHO RECEIVES? The majority of beneficiaries are retired workers, though disabled workers and survivors also receive benefits. In 2011, $41.5 billion a month—or nearly $500 billion a year—will be paid out in retirement benefits. The average monthly benefit paid to a retired worker in 2011 is $1,181.
WHAT DOES THE FUTURE HOLD? During the debt ceiling debate in August, Americans voiced concerns about Social Security’s future.
This is the Social Security Administration’s statement: “The financial conditions of the Social Security and Medicare programs remain challenging. Projected long-run program costs for both Medicare and Social Security are not sustainable under currently scheduled financing, and will require legislative modifications if disruptive consequences for beneficiaries and taxpayers are to be avoided.”
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