Beginner’s Guide to the Social Security Trust Fund

“What is a Social Security Trust Fund?” is a question many Americans may ask. A number of individuals receive benefits through the Social Security Administration (SSA) each month. However, most enrollees do not fully understand where their Social Security (SS) benefits come from.

If you receive SS, your benefits are pulled from a Social Security Trust Fund. Depending on the benefits you collect, your support comes from one of two trusts. The first is the federal Old-Age and Survivors Insurance Trust Fund (OASI). You receive benefits from this account if you qualify for benefits through a retired worker, including yourself. The other account is the federal Disability Insurance Trust Fund (DI). If you received benefits through a disabled worker, your benefits come from this reserve.

What is a Social Security Trust Fund?

The OASI and the DI are the only two trust funds that are responsible for the Social Security program. Whenever the SSA receives contributions for these programs, it deposits the funds into the appropriate trust. Essentially, these trust funds serve as repositories for program benefits until they can be distributed to enrollees.

Who contributes money to the Social Security Trust Fund?

The Social Security Trust Funds receive most of the contributions from tax payers. However, OASI Social Security and DI trust funds also receive contributions from interest earned on the trusts’ asset reserves. Additionally, the funds also earn revenue by taxing the Social Security benefits enrollees receive.

How much money is in the Social Security Trust Fund?

The Social Security Trust Fund balance changes annually. For this reason, the amount of available funds in the program’s reservoirs also change. As of 2018, the fund had nearly $2.9 trillion in its reserves.

When will the Social Security Trust Fund be depleted?

No one knows for certain when the Social Security Trust Fund will run out of monetary resources. However, if the program maintains its current spending and earnings ratio, the fund will be depleted in 2034. In any case, enrollees should not be too concerned with this date. Even if the SS Trust Fund spends all of its reserves, it can still afford to pay recipients some of their benefits.

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