While many Pennsylvania residents may believe that Social Security is a retirement benefit, it is actually intended to provide people with a form of protection against the possibility of lost income. The loss of income could be the result of a disability, retirement or the death of the income earner of the household.
By the end of 2016, 61 million people in the United States were receiving Social Security. Retirees accounted for 48 percent, disabled person made of 14 percent and the remaining 18 percent consisted of the spouses, children and survivors of workers who were due the benefits.
One important aspect of Social Security is the Social Security Disability Insurance, a branch of the program that is integrated with retirement benefits. Younger workers who are just beginning their careers have a one-in-three chance of being disabled or passing away before they reach the full retirement age for Social Security benefits.
Contributions to the disability insurance fund are made by both workers and employers via the payroll taxes that they pay. The current deduction rate for the disability fund is 2.37 percent of the 12.4 payroll tax, and the workers and employers both pay half of the deduction.
While there are two separate trust funds for the two programs, both of them are generally mentioned when there is a discussion on the long-term financial difficulties of Social Security. Referred to as the Old-Age, Survivors and Disability Insurance trust funds, they are expected to be empty by 2034.
Individuals who are having difficulty obtaining the Social Security benefits to which they are entitled may seek legal advice from a lawyer. The attorney could assist with appealing denied benefits and may help prove that a client has met the medical requirements.