Understanding the Old-Age, (OASDI) program?: How it works

The federal Old Age, Survivors, and Disability Insurance (OASDI) program is social security in the United States. The OASDI tax noted on your paycheck funds this comprehensive federal benefits program that provides benefits to retirees with disabilities and their spouses, children, and survivors.


  • The federal OASDI program is the official name for Social Security.
  • It provides benefits for retirees and the disabled.

Learn about the Old Age, Survivors and Disability Insurance (OASDI) program

The U.S. Social Security program is the largest social security system in the world and the largest expenditure in the federal budget, expected to cost $1.2 trillion in 2021. Nearly 90 percent of people age 65 and older receive treatment Social Security benefits, according to the Social Security Administration. 3 Social Security calculates your highest-earning 35-year Average Indexed Monthly Earnings (AIME). 

Roosevelt. In 1940, about 222,000 people received an average of $22.60 a month in benefits. 6 As of December 2020, the number was close to 70 million. In 2021, the average monthly benefit is $1,543. 

OASDI Payroll Tax

2021, The Social Security tax rate is 6.2% for employees and 12.4% for the self-employed. 

These incomes are held in two trust funds:

  • This Old Age and Survivors Insurance Trust Fund Retires
  • The Disability Insurance Trust Fund Disability Compensation 

These trusts pay out earnings and invest the remaining income they collect.

There is a cap on the annual income you pay Social Security taxes. In 2021, the maximum income from this tax is $142,800. 

OASDI Project Standards

The OASDI program provides payments to those who meet certain criteria.

 To be eligible for retirement benefits, workers must be fully insured. In 2021, for every $1,470 earned, one in four insurance will go to a worker. The dollar amount is pegged to inflation every few years.

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