As the U.S. hits its debt limit, the debt ceiling standoff has brought Social Security and other benefits into the spotlight. So what does that mean and how does it impact America’s seniors?
The debt ceiling is a legal limit set by Congress on how much debt the federal government can accumulate. When this debt reaches its maximum, Congress must increase the debt ceiling if it wants to keep spending money or borrow more from lenders such as banks or investors. If Congress fails to raise the debt ceiling, the U.S. would default on its debt payments, which could have catastrophic consequences for Social Security and other programs.
According to CNBC, during government shutdowns, which happen when Congress fails to pass a budget, Social Security checks are still sent out on time. However, if the debt ceiling is not raised, it’s possible that Social Security and other benefits could be affected. This could include a delay or decrease in payments, as well as an inability to pay out existing debt.
In addition, some lawmakers are considering cuts to the program as part of overall measures to curb spending. This could involve raising the retirement age, reducing the cost-of-living adjustment (COLA), or cutting benefits altogether.
To ensure that Social Security and other benefits are not affected by this standoff, it’s important for seniors to stay informed and contact their lawmakers. The Seniors Center is advocating on behalf of retirees, but we need your help. Sign our petitions today to make your voice heard, and be sure to follow us on Twitter and Facebook for more updates.