It’s no secret that Social Security is heading toward disaster by 2035 unless congress allocates significant tax dollars toward funding it. Current legislation is being written to address this impending Social Security breakdown. One of those bills gaining momentum is the Social Security Fairness Act, which would be a much-deserved win for federal employees.
The most beneficial aspect of the bill is the section that calls for dismantling what’s known as the “evil twins,” the Windfall Elimination Provision (WEP) and the Government Pension Offset (GPO). They were created in 1983 to balance out how Social Security funds are distributed. The WEP reduces social security payments for those who were covered by Social Security in their private sector jobs, but not in their government jobs that give them a pension. And the GPO reduces benefits for beneficiaries of federal and state government employees. We have more info on how these two provisions currently affect you on our Social Security page if you’re interested in learning more.
Currently, the Social Security Fairness Act has more than 290 co-sponsors that will move it through to the House for a vote.
Some believe that getting rid of the WEP and the GPO would actually be unfair. Here’s why – $150 billion given over the next 10 years to the 2.7 million who are affected by the “evil twins” would move up the extinction of the Social Security fund by a year, assuming no other legislation is passed to make Social Security solvent. Still many others believe that incentivizing government jobs and allocating money to current hard-working federal employees would be worth fighting for as the government inevitably retools Social Security so that it becomes a solid, sustainable benefit.
Regardless of whether this bill becomes law or not, it won’t be the last time congress discusses this issue. The Social Security problem isn’t going anywhere. But this bill would mean a step in the direction of valuing our federal employees. And after all federal employees do day in and day out to make things run more smoothly behind the scenes under tough circumstances, they deserve to be advocated for. Find out what else is involved by reading the bill here.
Legislators are debating what to do with the retirement you’ve worked so hard for, and we can understand if you’re feeling a bit anxious about that. That’s why we have qualified Benefits Specialists who can walk you through the options available to you as a federal employee preparing for retirement. Contact us to find a Benefits Specialist in your area.
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