Skip to content Social Security Online 
Actuarial Publications 
www.socialsecurity.gov  Home FAQs Contact Us Search 
Actuarial Publications 
Summary of Provisions That Would Change the Social Security Program 
Description of Proposed Provisions:


Estimates based on the intermediate assumptions of the 2016 Trustees Report
Printerfriendly Version (PDF) 
Change from present law [percent of payroll] 
Shortfall eliminated  

Longrange actuarial balance 
Annual balance in 75th year 
Longrange actuarial balance 
Annual balance in 75th year 

Present law shortfall in longrange actuarial balance is 2.66 percent of payroll and in annual balance for the 75th year is 4.35 percent of payroll.  
E1.1 
Increase the payroll tax rate (currently 12.4 percent) to 15.2 percent in 2017 and later.
graph  table  pdfgraph  pdftable  memo (Social Security Advisory Board) 
2.67  2.77  100%  64%  
E1.2 
Increase the payroll tax rate (currently 12.4 percent) to 15.2 percent in
20292058, and to 18.0 percent in years 2059 and later.
graph  table  pdfgraph  pdftable  memo (Social Security Advisory Board) 
3.03  5.42  114%  125%  
E1.3 
Reduce the payroll tax rate (currently 12.4 percent) to 11.4 percent in
2017 and later.
graph  table  pdfgraph  pdftable  memo (Warshawsky) 
0.97  1.01  36%  23%  
E1.4 
Increase the payroll tax rate (currently 12.4 percent) by 0.1 percentage point
each year from 20222041, until the rate reaches 14.4 percent in 2041 and later.
graph  table  pdfgraph  pdftable  memo (Larson 2014)  memo (National Academy of Social Insurance) 
1.45  1.98  55%  46%  
E1.5 
Increase the payroll tax rate (currently 12.4 percent) to 12.6 percent in 2019,
12.9 percent in 2027, 13.1 in percent in 2037, 13.9 percent in 2047, 13.5 percent
in 2057, and 13.3 percent in 2067 and later.
graph  table  pdfgraph  pdftable  memo (NRC/NAPA) 
0.76  0.91  29%  21%  
E1.6 
Increase the payroll tax rate (currently 12.4 percent) to 12.6 percent in 2019,
12.9 percent in 2027, 13.3 in percent in 2037, 13.8 percent in 2047, 14.4 percent
in 2067, and 14.5 percent in 2082 and later.
graph  table  pdfgraph  pdftable  memo (NRC/NAPA) 
1.08  2.07  41%  48%  
E1.7 
Increase the payroll tax rate (currently 12.4 percent) to 12.7 percent in 2019,
13.0 percent in 2032, 13.3 in percent in 2047, 14.0 percent in 2067, 14.5 percent
in 2077, and 14.7 percent in 2087 and later.
graph  table  pdfgraph  pdftable  memo (NRC/NAPA) 
0.88  2.24  33%  52%  
E1.8 
Increase the payroll tax rate (currently 12.4 percent) by 0.1 percentage
point each year from 20192024, until the rate reaches 13.0 percent for
2024 and later.
graph  table  pdfgraph  pdftable  memo (Moore) 
0.54  0.60  20%  14%  
E1.9 
Increase the payroll tax rate (currently 12.4 percent) by 0.1 percentage
point each year from 20202043, until the rate reaches 14.8 percent in
2043. Then increase the payroll tax rate an additional 0.1 percentage point
in each year from 20822086, until the rate reaches 15.3 percent for 2086
and later.
graph  table  pdfgraph  pdftable  memo (Larson 2015) 
1.77  2.85  67%  66%  
E2.1 
Eliminate the taxable maximum in years 2017 and later, and apply full 12.4
percent payroll tax rate to all earnings. Do not provide benefit credit for
earnings above the currentlaw taxable maximum.
graph  table  pdfgraph  pdftable  memo (DeFazio 2015)  memo (Social Security Advisory Board) 
2.36  2.45  89%  56%  
E2.2 
Eliminate the taxable maximum in years 2017 and later, and apply full 12.4
percent payroll tax rate to all earnings. Provide benefit credit for earnings
above the currentlaw taxable maximum.
graph  table  pdfgraph  pdftable  memo (Social Security Advisory Board) 
1.90  1.61  72%  37%  
E2.3 
Eliminate the taxable maximum in years 2017 and later, and apply full 12.4
percent payroll tax rate to all earnings. Provide benefit credit for earnings
above the currentlaw taxable maximum, adding a bend point at the currentlaw
taxable maximum and applying a formula factor of 3 percent for AIME above this
new bend point.
graph  table  pdfgraph  pdftable  memo (National Academy of Social Insurance) 
2.16  2.15  81%  49%  
E2.4 
Eliminate the taxable maximum for years 2023 and later (phased in 20172022),
and apply full 12.4 percent payroll tax rate to all earnings. Provide benefit
credit for earnings above the currentlaw taxable maximum that are subject to
the payroll tax, using a secondary PIA formula. This secondary PIA formula
involves: (1) an "AIME+" derived from annual earnings from each year after 2016
that were in excess of that year's currentlaw taxable maximum; (2) a new bend
point equal to 134 percent of the monthly currentlaw taxable maximum; and (3)
formula factors of 3 percent and 0.25 percent below and above the new bend point,
respectively.
graph  table  pdfgraph  pdftable  memo (Deutch 2015)  memo (Deutch 2010) 
2.19  2.34  82%  54%  
E2.5 
Apply 12.4 percent payroll tax rate on earnings above $250,000 starting
in 2017, and tax all earnings once the currentlaw taxable maximum exceeds
$250,000. Do not provide benefit credit for additional earnings taxed.
graph  table  pdfgraph  pdftable  memo (Sanders 2016)  memo (Sanders 2015)  memo (Sanders 2013)  memo (DeFazio 2011) 
2.19  2.45  82%  56%  
E2.6 
Apply a 3 percent payroll tax on earnings above the currentlaw taxable
maximum starting in 2017. Do not provide benefit credit for earnings above
the currentlaw taxable maximum.
graph  table  pdfgraph  pdftable  memo (AARP) 
0.61  0.63  23%  15%  
E2.7 
Apply a 6 percent payroll tax on earnings above the currentlaw taxable
maximum starting in 2017. Do not provide benefit credit for earnings above
the currentlaw taxable maximum.
graph  table  pdfgraph  pdftable  memo (Wexler) 
1.19  1.24  45%  29%  
E2.8 
Apply a 2 percent payroll tax on earnings above the currentlaw taxable
maximum for years 20192066, and a 3 percent rate for years 2067 and later.
Do not provide benefit credit for earnings above the currentlaw taxable
maximum.
graph  table  pdfgraph  pdftable  memo (NRC/NAPA) 
0.44  0.63  17%  14%  
E2.9 
Apply the following payroll tax rates above the currentlaw taxable maximum:
2.0 percent in 2019, 3.0 percent in 2032, 3.5 percent in 2047, 4.5 percent in
2057, and 5.5 percent in 2067 and later. Do not provide benefit credit for
earnings above the currentlaw taxable maximum.
graph  table  pdfgraph  pdftable  memo (NRC/NAPA) 
0.72  1.13  27%  26%  
E2.10 
Eliminate the taxable maximum in years 2027 and later. Phase in elimination by
taxing all earnings above the currentlaw taxable maximum at: 1.24 percent in
2018, 2.48 percent in 2019, and so on, up to 12.40 percent in 2027. Provide
benefit credit for earnings above the currentlaw taxable maximum, adding a bend
point at the currentlaw taxable maximum and applying a formula factor of 5 percent
for AIME above this new bend point.
graph  table  pdfgraph  pdftable  memo (Harkin 2012) 
1.92  2.05  72%  47%  
E2.11 
Eliminate the taxable maximum in years 2022 and later. Phase in elimination by
taxing all earnings above the currentlaw taxable maximum at: 2.48 percent in
2018, 4.96 percent in 2019, and so on, up to 12.40 percent in 2022. Provide
benefit credit for earnings above the currentlaw taxable maximum that are
subject to the payroll tax, using a secondary PIA formula. This secondary PIA
formula involves: (1) an "AIME+" derived from annual earnings from each year
after 2017 that were in excess of that year's currentlaw taxable maximum; and
(2) a formula factor of 5 percent on this newly computed "AIME+".
graph  table  pdfgraph  pdftable  memo (Schatz)  memo (Harkin 2013) 
2.10  2.16  79%  50%  
E2.12 
Eliminate the taxable maximum in years 2028 and later. Phase in elimination by
taxing all earnings above the currentlaw taxable maximum at: 1.24 percent in
2019, 2.48 percent in 2020, and so on, up to 12.40 percent in 2028. Provide
benefit credit for earnings above the currentlaw taxable maximum. Create a new
bend point at the currentlaw taxable maximum with a 3 percent formula factor
applying above the new bend point.
graph  table  pdfgraph  pdftable  memo (Moore) 
1.93  2.15  73%  49%  
E2.13 
Apply OASDI payroll tax rate on earnings above $400,000 starting in 2018,
and tax all earnings once the currentlaw taxable maximum exceeds $400,000.
Provide benefit credit for earnings above the currentlaw taxable maximum
that are subject to the payroll tax, using a secondary PIA formula. This
secondary PIA formula involves: (1) an "AIME+" derived from annual earnings
from each year after 2017 that were in excess of that year's currentlaw
taxable maximum; and (2) a formula factor of 2 percent on this newly
computed "AIME+".
graph  table  pdfgraph  pdftable  memo (Larson 2015)  memo (Larson 2014) 
1.88  2.33  71%  54%  
E3.1 
Increase the taxable maximum such that 90 percent of earnings would be subject
to the payroll tax (phased in 20172026). Provide benefit credit for earnings
up to the revised taxable maximum.
graph  table  pdfgraph  pdftable  memo (Social Security Advisory Board) 
0.77  0.64  29%  15%  
E3.2 
Increase the taxable maximum such that 90 percent of earnings would be subject
to the payroll tax (phased in 20172026). Do not provide benefit credit for
additional earnings taxed.
graph  table  pdfgraph  pdftable  memo (Liebman, MacGuineas, Samwick) 
0.98  1.10  37%  25%  
E3.3 
Increase the taxable maximum such that 90 percent of earnings would be
subject to the payroll tax (phased in 20182023). Provide benefit credit
for earnings up to the revised taxable maximum.
graph  table  pdfgraph  pdftable  memo (AARP) 
0.78  0.64  29%  15%  
E3.4 
Increase the taxable maximum from $106,800 to $115,200 (in 2009 AWIindexed
dollars), phased in 20172019. Provide benefit credit for earnings up to
the revised taxable maximum.
graph  table  pdfgraph  pdftable  memo (Warshawsky) 
0.11  0.08  4%  2%  
E3.5 
Increase the taxable maximum each year by an additional 2 percent
beginning in 2017 until taxable earnings equal 90 percent of covered
earnings. Provide benefit credit for earnings up to the revised taxable
maximum.
graph  table  pdfgraph  pdftable  memo (Bipartisan Policy Center 2010)  memo (National Academy of Social Insurance) 
0.63  0.67  24%  15%  
E3.6 
Increase the taxable maximum each year by an additional 2 percent beginning in
2019 until taxable earnings equal 90 percent of covered earnings. Do not provide
benefit credit for additional earnings taxed.
graph  table  pdfgraph  pdftable  memo (NRC/NAPA) 
0.74  1.10  28%  25%  
E3.7 
Increase the taxable maximum by an additional 2 percent per year beginning in
2018 until taxable earnings equal 90 percent of covered earnings. Provide benefit
credit for earnings up to the revised taxable maximum. Create a new bend point
equal to the currentlaw taxable maximum with a 5 percent formula factor applying
above the new bend point.
graph  table  pdfgraph  pdftable  memo (Fiscal Commission) 
0.64  0.77  24%  18%  
E3.8 
Beginning in 2024, apply 2 percent payroll tax rate on earnings over the
wageindexed equivalent of $200,000 in 2017, with the threshold wageindexed
after 2024. Provide proportional benefit credit for additional earnings taxed,
based on the payroll tax rate applied to the additional earnings divided by the
full 12.4 percent payroll tax rate.
graph  table  pdfgraph  pdftable  memo (Johnson, Brady, Ryan) (includes similar provisions with 3 percent and 4 percent payroll tax rates) 
0.19  0.16  7%  4%  
E3.9 
Beginning in 2024, apply 2 percent payroll tax rate on earnings over the
wageindexed equivalent of $200,000 in 2017, with the threshold wageindexed
after 2024. Do not provide benefit credit for additional earnings taxed.
graph  table  pdfgraph  pdftable  memo (Johnson, Brady, Ryan) (includes similar provisions with 3 percent and 4 percent payroll tax rates) 
0.25  0.29  9%  7%  
E3.10 
Beginning in 2024, apply 2 percent payroll tax rate on earnings over
the wageindexed equivalent of $300,000 in 2017, with the threshold
wageindexed after 2024. Provide proportional benefit credit for
additional earnings taxed, based on the payroll tax rate applied to
the additional earnings divided by the full 12.4 percent payroll tax
rate.
graph  table  pdfgraph  pdftable  memo (Johnson, Brady, Ryan) (includes similar provisions with 3 percent and 4 percent payroll tax rates) 
0.14  0.12  5%  3%  
E3.11 
Beginning in 2024, apply 2 percent payroll tax rate on earnings over
the wageindexed equivalent of $300,000 in 2017, with the threshold
wageindexed after 2024. Do not provide benefit credit for additional
earnings taxed.
graph  table  pdfgraph  pdftable  memo (Johnson, Brady, Ryan) (includes similar provisions with 3 percent and 4 percent payroll tax rates) 
0.19  0.22  7%  5%  
E3.12 
Beginning in 2024, apply 2 percent payroll tax rate on earnings over the
wageindexed equivalent of $400,000 in 2017, with the threshold wageindexed
after 2024. Provide proportional benefit credit for additional earnings taxed,
based on the payroll tax rate applied to the additional earnings divided by
the full 12.4 percent payroll tax rate.
graph  table  pdfgraph  pdftable  memo (Johnson, Brady, Ryan) (includes similar provisions with 3 percent and 4 percent payroll tax rates) 
0.12  0.10  4%  2%  
E3.13 
Beginning in 2024, apply 2 percent payroll tax rate on earnings over the
wageindexed equivalent of $400,000 in 2017, with the threshold wageindexed
after 2024. Do not provide benefit credit for additional earnings taxed.
graph  table  pdfgraph  pdftable  memo (Johnson, Brady, Ryan) (includes similar provisions with 3 percent and 4 percent payroll tax rates) 
0.15  0.18  6%  4%  
E3.14 
Eliminate the taxable maximum for the employer payroll tax (6.2 percent)
beginning in 2017. For the employee payroll tax (6.2 percent) and for
benefit credit purposes, beginning in 2017, increase the taxable maximum
by an additional 2 percent per year until taxable earnings equal 90 percent
of covered earnings.
graph  table  pdfgraph  pdftable  memo (National Academy of Social Insurance) 
1.44  1.38  54%  32%  
E3.15 
Increase the taxable maximum such that 90 percent of earnings are subject
to the payroll tax (phased in 20172026). In addition, apply a tax rate of
6.2 percent for earnings above the revised taxable maximum (phased in from
20172026). Provide benefit credit for earnings taxed up to the revised
taxable maximum.
graph  table  pdfgraph  pdftable  memo (Senate Special Committee on Aging) 
1.40  1.35  53%  31%  
E3.16 
Beginning in 2018, apply 4 percent payroll tax rate on earnings above the
wageindexed equivalent of $400,000 in 2015, with the threshold wageindexed
after 2018. Provide benefit credit for additional earnings taxed, using a
secondary PIA formula. This secondary PIA formula involves: (1) an "AIME+"
derived from annual earnings taxed only between 2015 wageindexed equivalents
of $400,000 and $500,000 (with thresholds wageindexed after 2018); and (2)
a formula factor of 2 percent on this newly computed "AIME+".
graph  table  pdfgraph  pdftable  memo (Begich, Murray) 
0.32  0.34  12%  8%  
E3.17 
Beginning in 2018, increase the taxable maximum by twice the rate of increase
in the national Average Wage Index, but never by less than 3 percent. Provide
benefit credit for earnings up to the revised taxable maximum levels.
graph  table  pdfgraph  pdftable  memo (Murphy) 
1.05  1.48  40%  34% 
Privacy Policy
 Website Policies
& Other Important Information
 Site Map Last reviewed or modified August 31, 2016 