We all understand in some way or another what social security is. The program allocates benefits to those who are disabled or retired. It can be taken out of our paychecks or maybe someone you know is living off it. However, do you know the history behind this mandatory program and where it originated?
Social security was originally set up in 1935 after the great depression by then President Franklin D. Roosevelt. It was a program that was set up as part of the New Deal, which was meant to help with economic and social issues in the United States. Most of the United States infrastructure was built upon the programs created by the New Deal. This included building roads, public education, bank regulations, social security, parks, public health, sewer systems, and electrical systems.
When the Social Security Act was set it up it helped American’s feel much more secure about their future. After the great depression many people lost their jobs, homes, and life savings. This Act established pension for the elderly, victims of industrials accidents, unemployment, and aid for mothers and children, and the disabled.
A section of the government, which we know as the Social Security Administration (SSA), runs the program based out of Maryland. There are a number of regional offices, field offices, and processing centers throughout the United States and about 62,000 people work for the SSA.
Social security is set up as a pay as you go system. This is where employees pay into the system to help aid them when they become retired. A worker must have worked with covered employment to be eligible for Social Security benefits.
Both employers and employees who pay into the system fund the Social Security program. Once an employee hits a certain amount (approximately $100,000 per year) they no longer need to pay into the program. To be eligible you must be over 66 as of 2010. You can accept early retirement at age 62, but you will end up loosing much of your retirement benefits over the years.
Understanding how Social Security works can get quite confusing when you break it down. There are also many people who oppose the program and those who are for it, but either way the impact that Social Security has had on those in need is sizeable. Many of those who receive these benefits would be well below the poverty line if they did not have access to the program.
Also note that it is very common (almost routine) to be denied social security benefits upon your initial claim. It can also be very difficult to navigate through the extensive “red tape” and roadblocks that are put in front of you. Employing the aid of a qualified Social Security and Disability Lawyer early in the process will almost certainly expedite the process.