How Social Security affects you
On August 14, 1935, President Franklin D. Roosevelt marked the signing of the Social Security Act into law with these words:
“Today, a hope of many years standing is in large part fulfilled … We have tried to frame a law which will give some measure of protection to the average citizen and to his family against the loss of a job and against poverty-ridden old age.”
Today, Social Security is still a part of our lives. You probably only have to look to your own family to see someone who benefits from it. It may be an elderly grandparent or possibly a friend who receives disability income.
Social Security is funded by contributions from worker’s paychecks
Federal Insurance Contributions Act (FICA) taxes are withheld along with other taxes and deductions. In 2015 individual contribution is 6.2 percent, and employers contribute 6.2 percent for a total of 12.4 percent. This is paid on all income up to $118,500.
All of this information is available to you on http://www.ssa.gov/myaccount. Not only are projected benefits available at different retirement ages, but also:
- Track your earnings and verify them each year
- Get an estimate of your future benefits if you are still working;
- Get a letter with proof of your benefits if you currently receive them; and
- Manage your benefits:
- Change your address;
- Start or change your direct deposit;
- Get a replacement Medicare card; and
- Get a replacement SSA-1099 or SSA-1042S for tax season.
To create a My Social Security account, you must provide some personal information about yourself and give answers to some questions that only you are likely to know. Next, you create a username and password that you will use to access your online account. This process protects you and keeps your personal Social Security information private.