Social Security Launches Website
Specially Targeted to Women
Looking for Information About Social Security
As part of its ongoing effort to provide information to
diverse groups of individuals, the Social Security Administration
(SSA) is launching a new online website -- www.ssa.gov/women
-- Social Security Online "For Women."
The website provides women with a central location for accessing
basic Social Security program information about Retirement, Survivors,
Disability and Supplemental Security Income.
The Internet site provides links to basic information throughout
SSA's official website -- Social Security
Online -- that can be relevant to women at different stages
in their life. The links are grouped in logical categories to coincide
with the various life events affecting women:
Throughout their lives, women frequently face different
situations than men:
Working women, on average, earn less than men.
Women tend to be the primary caregivers, frequently taking
time out of careers to care for children or aging parents.
More women than men may be stay-at-home parents or spouses,
depending heavily on the Social Security spouse's benefits in
Women are more likely than men to outlive their spouse.
The importance of Social Security to women cannot be overlooked.
Social Security overshadows all other retirement income for women:
On average women live longer, but they have less pension and
savings income to rely on.
Women are half as likely as men to have private pensions.
And for those who do, they are on average half the size
The median 401(k) account balance for women over the age
of 40 is $7,000, compared to $20,000 for men
Social Security is a guaranteed benefit. While a woman may
outlive her savings, she won't outlive Social Security. She
can count on it for the rest of her life, no matter how long
she may live.
Social Security has built-in inflation protection in the annual
cost-of-living adjustment. Unlike most private pensions, the
value of the monthly benefit payment is protected.
The Social Security benefit structure is progressive. The benefit
formula is "weighted" to provide a higher rate of
income replacement for lower-income earners.
Social Security is especially vital to older women who are
single or divorced.
Social Security provides benefits for wives and widows
of retired workers, including divorcees. This protection
is significant because one of every two marriages ends in
Social Security represents half of all income for three-quarters
of unmarried women today. It is the only source of income
for one of every four unmarried elderly women.
Social Security survivors and disability benefits have enabled
women to hold their families together in difficult circumstances.