Will the government shutdown affect social security checks? – Community News
Social Security

Will the government shutdown affect social security checks?

With the Senate failing to reach an agreement on the debt ceiling on Monday the deadline has passed, which means that the government may close which could leave many social security recipients, including the elderly – of which one in five depend on SS for 90 percent of their income –– were concerned about the impact this could have on their payments.

Payments continue

However, there have been government shutdowns in the US before, the most recent being in 2013 when payments continued despite the situation.

Moreover, another argument, and probably the most important one, to suggest that Social Security benefits would continue to be provided this time around is the fact that SS operates individually from the government’s standard financing operations, similar to a pension plan. Therefore, the shutdown of the government is unlikely to lead to the shutdown of the Social Security Administration.

“That really sets it apart and makes it safer,” said Social Security Works president Nancy Altman.

being considered compulsory expenses, SS checks are taken from the trust fund pot, to make the payment viable because they have the money needed to do so.

“Even if the debt ceiling is not raised, funds from payroll taxes would still come into government,Altman added. “Those contributions go into the program’s trust funds and are used to pay for benefits.”

Therefore, fortunately for many SS beneficiaries, payments will continue as usual.

SS cards are no longer issued

While payments remain unaffected in the event of a shutdown, social security cards will be abruptly discontinued after September 30, meaning people may have difficulty dealing with an entity that needs the card when making financial transactions.

About 60,000 US citizens apply for a Social Security card every day, according to Congressman Dan Kildee. Those SS cards are needed for most of the financial transactions we do on a daily basis, such as opening a bank account, applying for loans, or starting a new job.

US dollar banknotes can be seen in this photo illustration taken on February 12, 2018.

Delays warned to happen

Now that the shutdown is no longer a utopia, feared “distribution week delays” anticipated by senior policy advisor at the National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare Maria Freese, are more real than ever.

The distribution of those checks will arrive with uncertain delays due to a lack of government personnel. The The length of the delay depends on the actual number of workers still working and the length of the closure.

As long as Social Security workers are considered essential government workers who remain in work, benefits will continue to be monitored,” Altman said.

“That situation could lead to social security getting caught up in the government clashing with its lending authority, which could slow down benefits,” she added.

Fortunately, the debt ceiling problem can be solved quickly, allowing the government to return to normal in a short time.


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