COMPARE ALL OPTIONS

Projected effects on beneficiaries

Summary Comparison vs. Scheduled Benefits
POPULATION: current law beneficiaries aged 60+
Policy option 2030 2050 2070
Median benefit change overall Percent with lower benefits Percent with higher benefits Median benefit change overall Percent with lower benefits Percent with higher benefits Median benefit change overall Percent with lower benefits Percent with higher benefits
  Cost of Living Adjustment
Increase the cost of living adjustment
Base it on the CPI-E 0% 82% 0% 83% 0% 84%
Reduce the cost of living adjustment
Base it on the Chained CPI -3% 91% 0% -4% 91% 0% -4% 91% 0%
  Coverage
 
Cover all newly hired state and local workers 0% 0% 2% 0% 0% 7% 0% 0% 14%
  Family Benefit
Create an alternative survivor benefit
Survivor receives the higher of the current law benefit or the alternative benefit equal to 75% of the survivor's own benefit plus the deceased worker's PIA 0% 0% 8% 0% 0% 9% 0% 0% 10%
Reduce marriage duration requirement for divorced spouse benefits
Allow divorced spouses who were married at least 5 years to receive benefits, but at a reduced rate 0% 0% 1% 0% 0% 1% 0% 0% 1%
Reduce spousal benefits
From 50% to 33% of the worker's PIA 0% 5% 0% 0% 6% 0% 0% 5% 0%
  Individual Account
Allow voluntary individual accounts
Allow workers to voluntarily contribute an additional 2% of pay (up to the tax max) to an individual account 0% 0% 41% 0% 87% 0% 94%
  Retirement Age
Increase the EEA from 62 and the FRA from 67
At a rate of 1 month every 2 years starting in 2017 (EEA) and 2023 (FRA) 0% 9% 15% 0% 49% 21% -3% 60% 21%
Increase the FRA from 67
At a rate of 1 month every 2 years starting in 2023 0% 11% 0% -2% 66% 0% -6% 80% 0%
To 68, at a rate of 1 month every 2 years 0% 11% 0% -2% 66% 0% -5% 77% 0%
  Taxation
Increase Social Security payroll tax from 12.4%
To 15.2% and then to 18.0% in 2056 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0%
Increase the earnings subject to taxation
Make all earnings subject to the Social Security payroll tax, and include these earnings in benefit computations 0% 0% 6% 0% 0% 16% 0% 0% 19%
Make 90% of earnings subject to the Social Security payroll tax, include these earnings in benefit computations, and phase in from 2014 to 2023 0% 0% 5% 0% 0% 16% 0% 0% 19%
  Worker Benefit
Credit earnings to caregivers' records
Up to 5 years at one-half average wage when caring for children under age six 0% 1% 18% 0% 1% 26% 0% 1% 26%
Eliminate the retirement earnings test
For retired worker beneficiaries aged 62 or older and for survivor beneficiaries aged 60 or older 0% 17% 3% 0% 32% 3% 0% 33% 3%
Increase benefits for older beneficiaries
PIA increase is phased-in starting at 81 and by 85 is equal to 5 percent of the average retired-worker PIA in the year the beneficiary turns 80 0% 0% 22% 0% 0% 30% 0% 0% 30%
Increase the computation period from 35 years
To 40 years (does not apply to DI) 0% 45% 0% -3% 76% 0% -3% 80% 0%
Index PIA factors to longevity
Multiply factors by the ratio of life expectancy at 67 in 2018 to the life expectancy at age 67 in the 4th year prior to the year of initial benefit eligibility 0% 12% 0% -3% 71% 0% -8% 88% 0%
Price index the PIA formula
Protect the bottom 30% of workers from price indexing 0% 27% 0% -8% 70% 0% -17% 77% 0%
Reconfigure the minimum benefit
For workers with 10 to 30 years of coverage (YOC = 4 quarters earned that year) set PIA up to 125% of the monthly poverty guideline 0% 0% 10% 0% 0% 16% 0% 0% 17%
Reduce the 90%, 32%, and 15% PIA factors
To 90%, 21%, and 10% over a 31-year period -1% 53% 0% -10% 90% 0% -17% 95% 0%
Source: SSA/Office of Retirement Policy, using MINT 7 Run: 03/12/2015
Providing these estimates does not imply SSA support for the proposal, nor is SSA responsible for any interpretations of these estimates.
Summary Comparison vs. Payable Benefits
POPULATION: current law beneficiaries aged 60+
Policy option 2050 2070
Median benefit change overall Percent with lower benefits Percent with higher benefits Median benefit change overall Percent with lower benefits Percent with higher benefits
  Cost of Living Adjustment
Increase the cost of living adjustment
Base it on the CPI-E 0% 100% 0% 100%
Reduce the cost of living adjustment
Base it on the Chained CPI 0% 100% 0% 100%
  Coverage
 
Cover all newly hired state and local workers 0% 100% 0% 100%
  Family Benefit
Create an alternative survivor benefit
Survivor receives the higher of the current law benefit or the alternative benefit equal to 75% of the survivor's own benefit plus the deceased worker's PIA 0% 100% 0% 100%
Reduce marriage duration requirement for divorced spouse benefits
Allow divorced spouses who were married at least 5 years to receive benefits, but at a reduced rate 0% 100% 0% 100%
Reduce spousal benefits
From 50% to 33% of the worker's PIA 3% 97% 3% 97%
  Individual Account
Allow voluntary individual accounts
Allow workers to voluntarily contribute an additional 2% of pay (up to the tax max) to an individual account 0% 100% 0% 100%
  Retirement Age
Increase the EEA from 62 and the FRA from 67
At a rate of 1 month every 2 years starting in 2017 (EEA) and 2023 (FRA) 2% 98% 4% 96%
Increase the FRA from 67
At a rate of 1 month every 2 years starting in 2023 1% 99% 2% 98%
To 68, at a rate of 1 month every 2 years 1% 99% 2% 98%
  Taxation
Increase Social Security payroll tax from 12.4%
To 15.2% and then to 18.0% in 2056 0% 100% 0% 100%
Increase the earnings subject to taxation
Make all earnings subject to the Social Security payroll tax, and include these earnings in benefit computations 0% 100% 0% 100%
Make 90% of earnings subject to the Social Security payroll tax, include these earnings in benefit computations, and phase in from 2014 to 2023 0% 100% 0% 100%
  Worker Benefit
Credit earnings to caregivers' records
Up to 5 years at one-half average wage when caring for children under age six 0% 100% 0% 100%
Eliminate the retirement earnings test
For retired worker beneficiaries aged 62 or older and for survivor beneficiaries aged 60 or older 0% 100% 0% 100%
Increase benefits for older beneficiaries
PIA increase is phased-in starting at 81 and by 85 is equal to 5 percent of the average retired-worker PIA in the year the beneficiary turns 80 0% 100% 0% 100%
Increase the computation period from 35 years
To 40 years (does not apply to DI) 0% 100% 0% 100%
Index PIA factors to longevity
Multiply factors by the ratio of life expectancy at 67 in 2018 to the life expectancy at age 67 in the 4th year prior to the year of initial benefit eligibility 1% 99% 1% 99%
Price index the PIA formula
Protect the bottom 30% of workers from price indexing 9% 88% 34% 63%
Reconfigure the minimum benefit
For workers with 10 to 30 years of coverage (YOC = 4 quarters earned that year) set PIA up to 125% of the monthly poverty guideline 0% 100% 0% 100%
Reduce the 90%, 32%, and 15% PIA factors
To 90%, 21%, and 10% over a 31-year period 2% 96% 2% 92%
Source: SSA/Office of Retirement Policy, using MINT 7 Run: 03/12/2015
Providing these estimates does not imply SSA support for the proposal, nor is SSA responsible for any interpretations of these estimates.