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Security in Your Old Age (Informational Service Circular No. 9) by Social Security Board

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[Note: According to the Social Security Administration website, this
pamphlet was published in 1936.]

Security in Your Old Age

Social Security Board

Washington, D.C.

To Employees of Industrial
and Business Establishments


Beginning November 24, 1936, the United States Government will set up a
Social Security account for you, if you are eligible. To understand your
obligations, rights, arid benefits you should read the following general

There is now a law in this country which will give about 26 million
working people something to live on when they are old and have stopped
working. This law, which gives other benefits, too, was passed last year
by Congress and is called the Social Security Act.

Under this law the United States Government will send checks every month
to retired workers, both men and women, after they have passed their 65th
birthday and have met a few simple requirements of the law.


This means that if you work in some factory, shop, mine, mill, J. store,
office, or almost any other kind of business or industry, you will be
earning benefits that will come to you later on. From the time you are 65
years old, or more, and stop working, you will get a Government check
every month of your life, if you have worked some time,(one day or more)
in each of any 5 years after 1936, and have earned during that time a
total of $2,000 or more.

The checks will come to you as a right. You will get them regardless of
the amount of property or income you may have. They are what the law calls
"Old-Age Benefits" under the Social Security Act. If you prefer to keep on
working after you are 65, the monthly checks from the Government will
begin coming to you whenever you decide to retire.

The Amount of Your Checks

How much you will get when you are 65 years old will depend entirely on
how much you earn in wages from your industrial or business employment
between January 1, 1937, and your 65th birthday. A man or woman who gets
good wages and has a steady job most of his or her life can get as much as
$85 a month for life after age 65. The least you can get in monthly
benefits, if you come under the law at all, is $10 a month.


Suppose you are making $25 a week and are young enough now to go on
working for 40 years. If you make an average of $25 a week for 52 weeks in
each year, your check when you are 65 years old will be $53 a month for
the rest of your life. If you make $50 a week, you will get $74.50 a month
for the rest of you life after age 65.


But suppose you are about 55 years old now and have 10 years to work
before you are 65. Suppose you make only $15 a week on the average. When
you stop work at age 65 you will get a check for $19 each month for the
rest of your life. If you make $25 a week for 10 years, you will get a
little over $23 a month from the Government as long as you live after your
65th birthday.


If you should die before you begin to get your monthly checks, your family
will get a payment in cash, amounting to 31/2 cents on every dollar of wages
you have earned after 1936. If, for example, you should die at age 64, and
if you had earned $25 a week for 10 years before that time, your family
would receive $455. On the other hand, if you have not worked enough to
get the regular monthly checks by the time you are 65, you will get a lump
sum, or if you should die your family or estate would get a lump sum. The
amount of this, too, will be 31/2 cents on every dollar of wages you earn
after 1936.


The same law that provides these old-age benefits for you and other
workers, sets up certain new taxes to be paid to the United States
Government. These taxes are collected by the Bureau of Internal Revenue of
the U. S. Treasury Department, and inquiries concerning them should be
addressed to that bureau. The law also creates an "Old-Age Reserve
Account" in the United States Treasury, and Congress is authorized to put
into this reserve account each year enough money to provide for the
monthly payments you and other workers are to receive when you are 65.


The taxes called for in this law will be paid both by your employer and by
you. For the next 3 years you will pay maybe 15 cents a week, maybe 25
cents a week, maybe 30 cents or more, according to what you earn. That is
to say, during the next 3 years, beginning January 1, 1937, you will pay 1
cent for every dollar you earn, and at the same time your employer will
pay 1 cent for every dollar you earn, up to $3,000 a year. Twenty-six
million other workers and their employers will be paying at the same time.

After the first 3 years--that is to say, beginning in 1940--you will, pay,
and your employer will pay, 11/2 cents for each dollar you earn, up to
$3,000 a year. This will be the tax for 3 years, and then, beginning in
1943, you will pay 2 cents, and so will your employer, for every dollar
you earn for the next 3 years. After that, you and your employer will each
pay half a cent more for 3 years, and finally, beginning in 1949, twelve
years from now, you and your employer will each pay 3 cents on each dollar
you earn, up to $3,000 a year. That is the most you will ever pay.


The Government will collect both of these taxes from your employer. Your
part of the tax will be taken out of your pay. The Government will collect
from your employer an equal amount out of his own funds.

This will go on just the same if you go to work for another employer, so
long as you work in a factory, shop, mine, mill, office, store, or other
such place of business. (Wages earned in employment as farm workers,
domestic workers in private homes, Government workers, and on a few other
kinds of jobs are not subject to this tax.)


Meanwhile, the Old-Age Reserve fund in the United States Treasury is
drawing interest, and the Government guarantees it will never earn less
than 3 percent. This means that 3 cents will be added to every dollar in
the fund each year.

Maybe your employer has an old-age pension plan for his employees. If so,
the Government's old-age benefit plan will not have to interfere with
that. The employer can fit his plan into the Government plan.

What you get from the Government plan will always be more than you have
paid in taxes and usually more than you can get for yourself by putting
away the same amount of money each week in some other way.

Note.--"Wages" and "employment" wherever used in the foregoing mean wages
and employment as defined in the Social Security Act.


If you want more information, write to the Social Security Board,
Washington, D.C., or get in touch with one of the following offices:

Region I--Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and

Social Security Board
120 Boylston Street
Boston, Mass.

Region II--New York:

Social Security Board
45 Broadway
New York, N.Y.

Region III--New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Delaware:

Social Security Board
Widener Building
Juniper and Chestnut Streets
Philadelphia, Pa.

Region IV--Virginia, West Virginia, North Carolina, Maryland, and District
of Columbia:

Social Security Board
National Theatre Building
Washington, D. C.

Region V--Kentucky, Ohio, and Michigan:

Social Security Board
Bulkley Building
1501 Euclid Avenue
Cleveland, Ohio

Region VI--Illinois, Indiana, and Wisconsin:

Social Security Board
211 West Wacker Drive
Chicago, 111.

Region VII--Tennessee, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, Florida, and South

Social Security Board
1829 First Avenue North
Birmingham, Ala.

Region VIII--Minnesota, North Dakota, and Nebraska:

Social Security Board
New Post Office Building
Minneapolis, Minn.

Region IX--Missouri, Kansas, Arkansas, and Oklahoma:

Social Security Board
Dierks Building
1006 Grand Avenue
Kansas City, Mo.

Region X--Louisiana, Texas, and New Mexico:

Social Security Board
Smith-Young Tower Building
San Antonio, Tex.

Region XI--Montana, Idaho, Utah, Colorado, Arizona, and Wyoming:

Social Security Board
Patterson Building
1706 Welton Street
Denver, Colo.

Region XII--California, Oregon, Washington, and Nevada:

Social Security Board
Humboldt Bank Building
785 Market Street
San Francisco, Calif.



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