2020 Social Security Benefits

Scissors cutting a note that says 'costs'

Take a look at how Social Security benefits have changed. Use this infographic to help you plan for the coming year, and to learn a little more about retirement benefits and taxes.

Your 2020 Social Security Benefits

Find Out how your Benefits have Changed

Estimated average Social Security retirement benefits starting January 2020:

Worker's Retirement Year Amount Given
2019 $1,479 / Month
2020 $1,503 / Month

Did you Know?

You can increase your Social Security retirement benefits by 5-8% when you delay applying until you’re age 70.

1.6% cost of living adjustment for Social Security retirement benefits and SSI payments begins with the December 2019 benefits (payable in January 2020).

The 2020 maximum Social Security retirement benefits a worker retiring at full retirement age is $3,011/mo.

87% of Baby Boomers are expecting Social Security to be a source of their retirement income.

1-3 people expect it to be their primary source of income. Social Security pays benefits to more than 67 million people including retirees, children and surviving spouses.

2020 Social Security and Medicare Tax Rates

If you Work for Someone Else If you're Self-Employed
You Pay 7.65% You Pay 15.3%
Note: The above tax rates are a combination of 6.2% Social Security and 1.45% for Medicare. There is also 0.9% Medicare wages surtax for those with wages above $200,000 single ($250,000 joint filers) that is not reflected in these figures.

Maximum Amount You can Pay in Social Security Taxes

2019 2020
$132,900 $137,700

How Does Social Security Work?

  • When you work, you pay taxes into Social Security.
  • The Social Security Administration used your tax money to pay benefits to people right now.
  • Any unused money goes to the Social Security trust funds.
  • Later on when you retire, you receive benefits.

Social Security Payments Explained

SS Social Security retirement benefits are for people who have "paid into" the Social Security system through taxable income. SSD or SSDI Social Security Disability (SSD or SSDI) benefits are for people who have disabilities but have "paid into" the Social Security system through taxable income. SSI Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits are for adults and children who have disabilities, plus limited income and resources. SSI Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits are for adults and children who have disabilities, plus limited income and resources

Maximum SSI Payments 2019 2020
Individual $771 / Month $783 / Month
Couple $1,157 / Month $1,175 / Month

Here's How to Qualify for your Retirement Benefits

When you work and pay Social Security taxes, you earn "credits" toward Social Security benefits. The number of credits you need to get retirement benefits depends on when you were born. If you were born in 1929 or later, you need 40 credits (10 years of work) to receive Social Security retirement benefits. The earnings needed for a credit in 2020 is $1,410. You get 4 credits maximum per year.

Did you Know you can Check your Benefit Status Before you Retire?

You can check online by creating a my Social Security account on the SSA website. If you don’t have an account, you’ll be mailed a paper Social Security statement 3 months before your 61st birthday. It shows your year-by-year earnings, and estimates of retirement, survivors and disability benefits you and your family may be able to receive now and in the future. If it doesn’t show earnings from a state or local government employer, contact them. The work may not have been covered either by a Section 218 agreement or by federal law.

Sources: SSA.gov, 17th Annual Retirement Survey, Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies®


The information in this article is written as accurately as possible and to best of the writer's knowledge. However, there may be omissions, errors, or mistakes. Because of this and changes in circumstances, the information in this article is subject to change. This article is for informational purposes only and should not serve as professional, financial, medical, emotional, and/or legal advice. Readers may rely on the information on this article at their own risk, but they should consult a CPA, financial expert, or other professional for advice. Givilancz & Martinez, PLLC reserves the right to change and handle this article series, and therefore, may remove or alter any part of this article or the comments section. Any comments inserted by readers are not the responsibility of G&M PLLC and do not represent the thoughts or ideas of G&M PLLC.