Is Social Security Healthier Than Everyone Realizes?

Have you heard the rumor that Social Security is dying? It’s a pretty big claim, and considering the bailout the Social Security Disability Trust got last year, some think it could be true. However, there are many details that are being left out by the doomsayers that think the end of Social Security is near. Here are a few of those details.

Social Security Is Healthier Than You Realize

Right now, experts say that Social Security will run out of money within the next 15-20 years, but there are some details they are leaving out. First off, the trust funds for Social Security retirement, survivor, and disability benefits added up to around $2.85 trillion in 2016. In 2015, those trust funds were at 2.81 trillion. That’s right, the Social Security trust fund is growing, and there’s even more good news you probably haven’t heard.

The Social Security trust had a $23 billion surplus in 2015, and though we are still waiting on precise numbers, that trend probably continued in 2016. So, why are critics so frightened that Social Security might be pushing up daisies real soon? That’s because Social Security’s spending rate grew at a 4.4 percent rate while revenues only grew by 4.1 percent.

Why Do People Think This Is the End of Social Security?

These naysayers believe that this difference in revenue and spending will kill the trust fund by 2034, but that’s not entirely true. By 2034, the trust fund will no longer have a surplus, and it’s estimated that Social Security will only be able to pay 79 percent of owed benefits. That’s not the death of Social Security, but it is a sizeable reduction in benefits. How can we stop this benefit reduction?

Right now, politicians are suggesting several solutions like using “means-testing” to reduce the benefits of wealthier Social Security claimants. Another measure would allow the trust to invest in bonds and securities other than the special fixed-income Treasury bonds it can buy now. However, some are worried that these proposals could take benefits out to the pockets of claimants that depend on these checks.

Is there any way to improve Social Security’s trust situation without shorting beneficiaries? Do you have any ideas that would allow beneficiaries to keep their benefits? Tell us what you think about the situation of Twitter and Facebook. You can also find more info on the state of Social Security by following our Tulsa disability attorneys on this blog.


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