Alert
Close

Think you know AARP? What you don't know about us may surprise you. Discover all the 'Real Possibilities'

Highlights

Open

Contests and
Sweeps

Safe Driving in 2014 Sweepstakes

Learn how AARP Driver Safety can help you stay safe—and enter for a chance to win $1,000. See official rules. 

Car buying made easy with the AARP Auto Buying Program

AARP-iPad-ePub-app

Free Fun!

AARP Games - Play Now!

Work
PROGRAMS

Best Employers for Workers Over 50

See the latest winners of this AARP recognition program.

Employer Resource Center

Attract and retain top talent in a changing workforce.

Most Popular
ARTICLES

Viewed

It's Time to Protect Social Security

The longer we wait, the harder it gets. Here are possible solutions from both sides of the political aisle

The Social Security Playbook illustration

Changes are needed to restore Social Security to long-term fiscal health. — Illustration by Pete Ryan

It's Time to protect Social Security logo

En español | Will Social Security be there for you? The answer is yes, but the future strength of the program depends on the outcome of a debate now raging in Washington. That debate often links Social Security to the ballooning federal deficit, although the program plays no direct role in the nation's debt and currently enjoys an enormous surplus.

See also: Social Security: Fears vs. Facts.

So, what's the problem? Social Security faces pressures both political and demographic. Even as it's been swept up in the debt issue, the system is bracing for a wave of boomer retirements that, combined with today's longer life spans, will exhaust the program's surplus funds over the next 25 years. At that point, Social Security would have only enough funds from current revenue to pay out about 75 cents on every dollar of promised benefits.

That scenario has younger Americans wondering whether Social Security will be able to meet their needs. A 2010 AARP survey found that just 25 percent of Americans ages 30 to 49 are confident about Social Security's future — compared with 58 percent of people 65 and over.

Here's the good news: There's time to implement small changes that can put Social Security in balance for the long term. Think of Social Security as a gigantic battleship that turns slowly: The sooner we start making adjustments, the smaller the required changes.

Read on to understand the debate, the issues, and the options.

Next: How does Social Security really work? >>

Topic Alerts

You can get weekly email alerts on the topics below. Just click “Follow.”

Manage Alerts

Processing

Please wait...

progress bar, please wait

Tell Us WhatYou Think

Please leave your comment below.

Jobs You Might Like

Discounts & Benefits

From companies that meet the high standards of service and quality set by AARP.

UPS

Members get 15% off eligible products/services and 5% off shipping at The UPS Store®.

AARP Discounts on Consumer Cellular Phones and Plans

Members save 5% on monthly service and usage charges with Consumer Cellular.

Member Benefits

Renew today! Members receive exclusive member benefits & affect social change.

Explore Your Learning Possiblities