A whopping 64 million people are pulling from the United States social security system. As more people move into retirement age, that number is steadily increasing.
Many questions regarding social security issues have been hot topics of discussion lately. People lament on the system running dry, not enough people having children to pay into the system, and other snags they feel are likely to derail the program.
If you’re somebody that’s looking to collect social security in the future, there’s certainly reason to worry. A lot can go wrong with your ability to collect on the benefits you’re entitled to.
Are you curious to know exactly what might keep you and your social security payments apart? If you are, keep reading to fuel your need to know!
- The Social Security Pool May Run Dry
Among the many social security issues that are discussed widely, the program running dry is the most common complaint we hear.
For the uninitiated, social security is a program that relies on the contributions of current workers to pay for the lives of current retirees. For the system to work, you need less retired people than you have people working and paying into the system.
That balance has been threatened lately with less young people in the workforce and more people marching towards retirement age.
You must have a backup plan should the program ever cease to be able to make payments to you once you’re eligible to collect.
- Benefits Won’t Increase With Cost of Living
Social security is meant to increase to counter inflation. That’s not to say though that it always does.
The government relies on certain indexes to determine inflation and in some cases, that index doesn’t pick up large enough movement to trigger additional payments. This has created conditions where during some years, raises in social security were not distributed despite many agreeing living costs had risen.
- You’ll Need It Sooner Than You’re Eligible
If you ask somebody on the street when they’d be able to start collecting social security payments, most would tell you 65. They’d be wrong.
As people have started living longer and money has become tighter, social security has adjusted the age of eligibility to 67 years old.
For the people that aren’t prepared for the two-year increase, it can present a problem figuring out how to pay the bills during the gap.
- Opening up Benefits to Undocumented Migrants
Contrary to popular belief, undocumented migrants are not ineligible to collect social security payments. Some do pay into the program though by obtaining false identification and their employers withholding money from their paychecks.
In theory, this creates a net benefit for people that are here legally and can collect that additional social security money without having to share it.
As the political climate changes though, calls for undocumented people to be able to collect on a program that some of them pay into has picked up steam. If concessions were made to these asks, there’s a possibility that the social security pool could dilute further.
- Taxes May Hurt Your Ability to Live Off of Social Security
People look at their social security benefits or their social security disability payments and assume the money they get is theirs to use, free and clear. That’s not true.
Social security benefits are subject to federal taxes depending on how much money your collective annual income is when you add social security benefits to it.
It’s important to get an idea of how much of your social security dollars you’ll be eligible to keep so you can plan your lifestyle accordingly.
- Work Will Reduce Your Benefits
Stacking social security income on top of your work income will reduce how much you get in social security benefits. This is another popular social security issues topic of conversation that many people are unaware of.
Note though that reductions made to your social security payments due to your working are not permanent. Once you stop working, your benefits will rise back up to their maximum eligibility.
- The Government May Drain the Social Security Pool
It may sound counter-intuitive given the importance of the program but the government can and has borrowed from the social security pool for a variety of reasons. In every case, it has done a good job of refueling the money it takes out.
There is always a fear though that one day, a borrow will be made that can’t be replaced which would hasten the extinction of social security benefits.
- Technicalities Could Disqualify You From the Money You Expect
When you fill out an application for social security or some form of disability insurance and are denied, that can be a huge problem. Many Americans that think they have slam-dunk eligibility have been denied in the past so it’s a possibility you need to be prepared for.
There are social security disability attorneys out there that can help you fight against denied applications if you feel your denial was made in error.
Being Aware of Social Security Issues Is Your Best Defense Against Them
There is a bevy of social security issues Americans may run into when trying to collect against the program. We hope that by informing you of some of the most commonly cited ones, you can prepare accordingly and never get caught with less money than you need in your bank account.
Social security is a complicated topic that almost always begs more context. If you’d like additional information on it or other topics important to your life, check out the newest content in our blog.