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In the United States, Social Security is primarily the Old-Age, Survivors, and Disability Insurance (OASDI) federal program. The original Social Security Act of 1935 and the current version of the Act, as amended, encompass several social welfare and social insurance programs. Social Security is funded through payroll called Federal Insurance Contributions Act tax (FICA) or Self Employed Contributions Act Tax (SECA). Tax deposits are collected by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and are formally entrusted to the Federal Old-Age and Survivors Insurance Trust Fund, the Federal Disability Insurance Trust Fund, the Federal Hospital Insurance Trust Fund, or the Federal Supplementary Medical Insurance Trust Fund which make up the Social Security Trust Funds. With a few exceptions, all salaried income, up to an amount specifically determined by law (see tax rate table below) has an FICA or SECA tax collected on it. All income over said amount is not taxed, for 2014 the maximum amount of taxable earnings is $117,000.

With few exceptions, all legal residents working in the United States now have an individual Social Security number. Indeed, nearly all working (and many non-working) residents since Social Security’s 1935 inception have had a Social Security number, because it is required to do a wide range of things including paying the IRS and getting a job.

In 2013, the total Social Security expenditures were $1.3 trillion, 8.4% of the $16.3 trillion GNP (2013) and 37% of the Federal expenditures of $3.684 trillion. Income derived from Social Security is currently estimated to keep roughly 20% of all Americans, age 65 or older, above the Federally defined poverty level. The Social Security Offices are headquartered in Woodlawn, Maryland, just west of Baltimore.

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