The History of Social Security

1935

The Social Security Act

The Social Security Act is passed by
Congress and signed into law by President
Roosevelt. The Act stipulates that financial benefits are given to retirees over age 65 based on lifetime payroll tax contributions. 

1965

Medicare

In 1965, the Social Security Act was amended to provide medical insurance to Social Security beneficiaries age 65 and older. This new “Medicare” program also offered people 65 and older the chance to purchase supplemental medical insurance.

1980

Social Security Reform

President Ronald Reagan created a commission to examine how to stabilize Social Security. In 1983, legislation was signed to gradually increased the retirement age to 67, tax Social Security benefits, and provide Social Security benefits to federal workers.

2004

Social Security Protection Act

President Ronald Reagan created a commission to examine how to stabilize Social Security. In 1983, legislation was signed to gradually increased the retirement age to 67, tax Social Security benefits, and provide Social Security benefits to federal workers.

The Future of social security

Each year, the Social Security Administration makes changes to the program. In 2018, for example, they rolled out a two percent cost-of-living adjustment, and a taxable earnings increase, an earnings limit increase for beneficiaries who still work and a slight increase in disability payments

1940

First Social Security Cards

To receive a social security card, workers completed an application at their local post office and received a national identity card with a unique, nine-digit identification number. 

Ida May Fuller was the first person to
receive a monthly Social Security check. She would live to be 100 and collect about $22,000
over her lifetime. 

1977

Funding Crisis

Social Security Becomes Financially Unstable. Benefits are taxed as income for the first time.

2002

Ticket to Work

Ticket to Work program is launched. It is a voluntary program designed to help people who are receiving disability benefits from Social Security “find good jobs, good careers, and better self-supporting futures.”

2015

Changes in the Law

The Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015 is enacted.

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