Soc Sec

The Social Security (“Soc Sec”) program was created out of the Great Depression of the 1930′s under the Social Security Act (passed in 1935). Since that time, Social Security has become a staple of not only American’s retirement (and retirement expectations) but also of American culture. The overarching goal of each Soc Sec program is to ensure the general welfare of the nation as a whole. Many pundits consider most of the Social Security Administration’s programs a part of social welfare that is available to U.S. citizens and Aliens who are lawfully able to work within the country. Of course, this will all depend on what your welfare definition is. At the present time the Social Security Administration oversees many different vital programs. The most popular of these programs are Social Security retirement, unemployment benefits, Supplemental Security Income, and Social Security Disability. Each of these programs will be discussed below.

Social Security Retirement

Far and away the most prevalent program managed by the Soc Sec Administration, the retirement benefits insurance program is received by more than 44 million individuals. People become eligible for retirement benefits by paying into the retirement system throughout their lives as they work. Each paycheck earned by most individual workers has social security taxes withheld from it. These funds go into the system to pay for current retirement payout checks and to invest for future obligations the system has.

Not everyone will be entitled to Soc Sec payments when they retire. Most employees of state, county or local government, such as firefighters and school teachers, will have opted out of paying a portion of each of their paychecks into the national system.

Unemployment Benefits

The federal government in the United States also assists individuals with various unemployment benefits. When an individual first receives unemployment payments, the particular state the person resides in pays unemployment for a specified period of time generally between 13 and 26 weeks. After this initial period of time has expired, the federal government will pay out federal unemployment benefits extension checks to these unemployed individuals. Of course, the person who applies for an unemployment benefit extension under the federal program must still meet a strict set of eligibility requirements just as he or she did to receive the state-sponsored payouts.

Supplemental Security Income

The Supplemental Security Income program was designed to help individuals who would otherwise be left on welfare meet a minimum standard of living. People who qualify for Supplemental Security Income will receive flat monthly compensation amount with which the recipient can use however he or she wishes. In order to qualify for Supplemental Security Income benefits you must have less than $3,000 in “countable assets” (if you are a married couple – this number is reduced to $2,000 for unmarried individual applicants) and earn a minimal (or no) income already. Generally, individuals who apply for and receive Supplemental Security Income from the Soc Sec Administration will also qualify for Medicaid benefits through the United States Department of Health and Human Services.

Social Security Disability

The Soc Sec Disability program was developed to assist people who have lost their source of compensation because of a disability. The source of the disability is not important for purposes of qualifying for benefits, only that the nature of the disability be of a sufficient type under the Social Security Administration’s regulations to qualify you for benefit payments. The general standard to receive Soc Sec disability payments is that your disability is expected to last a minimum year or end in your death and that you cannot perform any reasonable type of labor.

Because of the complex nature of the Disability program, it is wise to consult with an attorney who is familiar with the program’s requirements.

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