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Social Security's Future

Many people wonder where their Social Security tax dollars go.  Generally, out of every dollar you pay in Social Security taxes:

  • 70 cents goes to a trust fund that pays monthly benefits to retirees and their families and to widows, widowers and children of workers who have died;
  • 19 cents goes to a trust fund that pays for the health care of all Medicare beneficiaries; and
  • 11 cents goes to a trust fund that pays benefits to people with disabilities and their families.

Your Social Security taxes also pay for administering Social Security. The administrative costs are paid from the trust funds described above and are less than one cent of every Social Security tax dollar collected.

Money not used to pay benefits and administrative expenses is invested. The U.S. government uses the money it has borrowed from Social Security - just as it uses money you may have invested in savings bonds - to pay for all the services and projects it provides for our citizens.  And just as the government pays your interest on your bonds, so will it make good on its obligations to Social Security.  You also need to know about Social Security's financial stability.  Each year, Social Security's Board of Trustees reports on the financial status of the Social Security program. 

These reports are valuable tools for evaluating and ensuring the economic health of the Social Security system.  The latest report indicates that the Social Security system, as currently structured, will be able to pay benefits well into the next century.  This means Congress has the time it needs to make changes to safeguard the program's financial future.  You can count on Social Security being there when you need it.