Investing for Beginners

Social Security
The Social Security system in the United States is a hot topic these days. People are always asking, "Will it be there when I retire?" "When can I get it?" "How much will I get?" People don't seem to feel very secure about their Social Security!

Social Security provides retirement, disability and survivor benefits to eligible Americans.

Here are the basics:
  • You earn retirement benefits for every year you and your employer pay Social Security taxes. Most employers (including Florida public employers) are required to pay these taxes, as are self-employed people.
  • Retirement benefits depend on how long you've worked, and are limited. When you retire, you'll get a fixed monthly benefit payable for life.
  • The retirement age for full Social Security benefits is 65 if you were born before 1938, and the age gradually rises until it reaches 67 if you were born in 1960 or later. You can apply to receive benefits earlier, but those benefits will be reduced.
  • Social Security disability and survivor benefits are also available.

How well would you live on Social Security alone? Not very. That's why the Florida Retirement System and most other employers sponsor retirement plans. Even Social Security and FRS benefits combined will provide you with only a portion of your pre-retirement pay. That's why it's important to have personal savings in your retirement nest egg.

The Social Security Administration, a Federal agency, can provide you with an estimate of your Social Security benefits. You can access the Social Security Administration on the Internet at www.ssa.gov, or you can call them at 1-800-772-1213.
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