Will There Be a New Focus on Social Security in 2020?

While awaiting action from the government to shore up Social Security, plan sponsors can do their part by educating employees.

Reliability for Social Security has diminished in the past decade. Some people believe the benefit will be unavailable by the time retirement hits, while others think monthly checks will see a hefty cut.

The rumors shouldn’t be measured too much, says William Meyer, CEO of Social Security Solutions. In fact, he believes Social Security reform will likely be a priority in the new year, especially due to the upcoming presidential election. “Given the underfunding of the current system, everyone knows that a change is needed,” he adds. “We are starting to hear proposals from future presidential candidates and I’m hopeful that Social Security reform will be a priority in the next presidential term.”

Increasing awareness when it comes to claiming strategies is another trend Meyer foresees for 2020. He reasons that participants must evaluate options and understand how to maximize their own benefit claims. “The coordination of Social Security with your 401(k) will be the biggest financial decision Americans will make,” he says. “Those that take time to find a claiming strategy to maximize their benefits will be able to make their retirement savings last longer.”

Plan sponsors and their advisers can help employees with their understanding of Social Security. Understanding behavioral biases is also key to helping employees make the right decisions. In 2019, PLANSPONSOR spoke with several sources to offer actionable insights to plan sponsors.

Social Security: The Facts vs. Fiction
Educate older workers on Social Security and other such benefits, to help stretch their savings in retirement, experts say. Read more.

Social Security Education a Must-Have for Retirement Plan Participants
General education is helpful, but getting personal will help employees establish a plan for income in retirement. Read more.

Behavioral Insights About Retirement Income Decisions
A professor at the UCLA Anderson School of Management discussed biases that must be considered when helping people make retirement income decisions. Read more.