Social security is the system in which Americans pay taxes to support their elderly and disabled (see pensions), as well as others who are not able to support themselves.
The Social Security Number is a unique reference number that helps to you to gain access to social welfare benefits, public services and information. It also enables you to do many vital things like work, pay taxes, or open a bank account in America.
If you are not from the US, or do not hold a permission to work from the Department of Homeland Security, you won't be able to get a Social Security number. In this case, visit the Social Security Numbers For Noncitizens for more information.
Note that over the years, the U.S. has signed International Social Security Agreements with other countries all over the world.
To contact the Social Security Administration go on Ssa.gov or visit your closest office.
Social Security payroll taxes are collected under authority of the Federal Insurance Contributions Act (FICA). Money is collected from people in employment and used to fund social insurance payments.
Employers and employees (over 16 years of age and under 65) pay social insurance contributions into the Federal Insurance Contributions Act at the rate of 6.2% of your wages each. If you are self-employed, you pay the entire 12.4% (although you can deduct half of the self-employment tax as a business expense). In general, payment of social insurance is compulsory.
In New York City, employers with five or more employees who work more than 80 hours per calendar year in New York City must provide paid sick leave to employees. Employers with one to four employees who work more than 80 hours per calendar year in New York City must provide unpaid sick leave.
Full rights and benefits can be found on the nyc.gov page. In addition, an employer is required to provide an employee unpaid sick leave in accordance with the Family and Medical Leave Act or other federal laws.
People on maternity leave will be entitled to receive part of their salary through the New York Paid Family Leave (NYPFL). The employees taking Paid Family Leave will receive 55% of their average weekly wage. The maximum weekly benefit is currently $746.41 (deduced from the current State-wide Average Weekly Wage of $1,357.11).
These benefits are also available for employees who need to take care of a relative with a serious health condition or assist loved ones when a relative is send abroad on active military service for at least 10 weeks. Paid Family Leave also provides job protection, continued health insurance, protection from discrimination or retaliation.
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