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social security

Social Security is a U.S. government program funded through payroll taxes on employees, employers, and self-employed individuals. The taxes are collected under authority of the Federal Insurance Contribution Act (FICA) and support Social Security programs—including Old-Age, Survivors, and Disability Insurance.

Social Security provides a worker with a source of income during retirement or if the worker is unable to work due to a disability. It can also support a worker’s legal dependents (spouse, children, or parents) with benefits in the event of the worker’s death.

The Social Security program is administered by the Social Security Administration (SSA). The SSA keeps track of a worker’s earnings throughout their working life. When a worker retires, the amount of the worker’s monthly Social Security benefit depends on the worker’s earnings and the age at which the worker retires. Workers who retire earlier (beginning at age 62) typically receive lower benefit payments than they would if they postpone retirement.

In Texas, as in all states, Social Security is a federal program managed by the Social Security Administration (SSA) and is not governed by state law. It is funded through payroll taxes collected under the Federal Insurance Contributions Act (FICA) from employees, employers, and self-employed individuals. These funds are used to provide retirement, disability, and survivor benefits. The amount of retirement benefits a worker receives upon retirement is based on their earnings record and the age at which they choose to retire. Early retirement can begin at age 62, but taking benefits at this age results in lower monthly payments compared to waiting until full retirement age. Disability benefits are available to workers who are unable to work due to a qualifying disability, and survivor benefits support the worker's dependents in the event of the worker's death. While the SSA administers the program at a federal level, Texas residents must apply and qualify for benefits according to the same federal rules and regulations that apply across the United States.

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