Congressional Research Service Reports - 160 Matching Results

Search Results

Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs): Tax Incentives for Retirement Savings

Description: This report discusses Individual Retirement Arrangements (IRA) and their tax incentives. Many workers covered by employer-sponsored retirement plans do not work long enough with one employer to be entitled to a pension. Others may be covered by a profit-sharing plan to which the employer may have little or no profits to contribute. Since these individuals were "covered" by a retirement plan, they were ineligible to make tax-deductible contributions to a tax-sheltered Individual Retirement Arrangement (IRA). Many observers considered this a tax inequity and felt that all employees should be eligible to establish their own IRAs or make tax-deductible contributions to their employer's plan. Congress responded to this situation by approving retirement savings incentives for all workers as part of the tax cut bill (H.R. 4242). All workers, whether or not covered by an employer pension plan, are now permitted tax deductible contributions to IRAs up to $2,000 a year.
Date: November 22, 1982
Creator: Schmitt, Ray
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs)

Description: Recent changes in the Nation's tax laws have made Individual Retirement Accounts available to many people previously excluded. This report provides general information on IRAs including material explaining these recent changes and their consequences.
Date: June 28, 1983
Creator: Library of Congress. Congressional Research Service.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Former Presidents: Pensions, Facilities, and Services

Description: The Former Presidents Act (72 Stat. 838) of 1958 provides financial and practical means to those who have served as President of the United States and still retain certain implicit public duties. In 1958, the cost of former Presidents to the public was an estimated $64,000. In FY84, approximately $27 million will be spent on benefits to former Presidents and their widows. Operation and maintenance of Presidential Libraries was approximately $14.9 million in FY83. This report discusses increasing concerns regarding the amounts and the types of expenditures that have been made.
Date: May 18, 1984
Creator: Smith, Stephanie
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Individual Retirement Accounts: A Fact Sheet

Description: This report discusses general information about individual retirement accounts (IRAs), established by the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (P.L. 93-406) to promote retirement saving; the accounts were limited at first to workers (and spouses) who lacked employer pension coverage.
Date: February 22, 2001
Creator: Graney, Paul J.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Veterans' Pensions: Fact Sheet

Description: This report discusses veterans' pensions, which are monthly cash payments made to qualified veterans or survivors so that their total income from all countable sources reach specified annual levels and are administered by the Department of Veteran Affairs (VA).
Date: February 26, 2001
Creator: Snook, Dennis W. & Alice D. Butler
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Retirement Savings and Household Wealth in 2000: Analysis of Census Bureau Data

Description: This report examines recent trends in retirement saving and the policy implications. The aging of the American population and the impending retirement of the "baby boom" will place significant strains over the next several decades on both Social Security and on retirees' own financial resources. With continued increases in average life expectancies, retirees in the 21st century will have to stretch their savings and other assets over longer periods of retirement than were experienced by their parents and grandparents.
Date: December 12, 2002
Creator: Purcell, Patrick J.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Funding Postal Service Obligations to the Civil Service Retirement System

Description: This report provides background on the U.S. Postal Service's (USPS) funding of its retirement obligations, describes and analyzes the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) recalculation, and discusses considerations Congress may bring to bear on the draft legislation.
Date: January 2, 2003
Creator: Purcell, Patrick & Stevens, Nye
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Social Security: The Government Pension Offset

Description: This report discusses the Government Pension Offset (GPO) provision, which reduces Social Security benefits that a person receives as a spouse if he or she also has a government pension based on work that was not covered by Social Security. Its purpose is to replicate Social Security’s “dual entitlement” rule, which requires that a Social Security benefit earned as a worker be subtracted from any Social Security spousal benefit to which the worker is eligible. Its intent is to remove an advantage these workers would otherwise receive if they could receive both a government pension and full Social Security spousal benefits. Opponents contend that the provision is basically inaccurate and often unfair. Five bills have been introduced in the 108th Congress that would modify or repeal the provision.
Date: February 13, 2003
Creator: Kollmann, Geoffrey
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Social Security Notch Issue: A Summary

Description: This report discusses recent attempts at legislative action regarding changes to the computation of benefits under Social Security Amendments of 1977 (P.L. 95-216), which directly affected retirees born in the 5- to 15-year period after 1916. These persons fall in the "notch" between previous Social Security legislation and those affected by the amendments.
Date: March 6, 2003
Creator: Kollmann, Geoffrey
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Social Security Notch Issue: A Summary

Description: This report discusses recent attempts at legislative action regarding changes to the computation of benefits under Social Security Amendments of 1977 (P.L. 95-216), which directly affected retirees born in the 5- to 15-year period after 1916. These persons fall in the "notch" between previous Social Security legislation and those affected by the amendments.
Date: August 5, 2003
Creator: Kollmann, Geoffrey
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Military Retirement: Major Legislative Issues

Description: This report discusses various proposed changes to the military retirement system, which includes benefits for retirement after an active or reserve military career, disability retirement, and survivor benefits for eligible survivors of deceased retirees. Major issues include whether some or all military retirees should be allowed to receive both military retired pay and any VA disability compensation to which they are otherwise entitled -- referred to as "concurrent receipt" -- whether some military personnel should be entitled to military retired pay with less than 20 years of service, and whether many more personnel should serve well past the 20-year point before retiring.
Date: October 21, 2003
Creator: Goldich, Robert L.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Regulating Private Pensions: A Brief Summary of ERISA

Description: This report briefly discusses the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA), and how it protects the interests of participants and beneficiaries in private-sector employee benefit plans. ERISA covers a number of fringe benefits provided by employers, but most of its provisions deal with pension plans. Pension plans sponsored by the federal, state, and local governments, or by churches generally are exempt from ERISA.
Date: January 15, 2004
Creator: Purcell, Patrick
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Retirement Savings Tax Credit: A Fact Sheet

Description: This report discusses the saver's tax credit, under which eligible individuals receive a non-refundable tax credit of up to $1,000 for contributing to a traditional IRA or an employer-sponsored retirement plan that is qualified under §401, §403 or §457 of the Internal Revenue Code. The credit was first available in 2002 but will expire after 2006 unless extended by Congress.
Date: April 1, 2004
Creator: Purcell, Patrick
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Federal Employee Retirement Programs: Budget and Trust Fund Issues

Description: Retirement annuities for civilian federal employees are provided mainly through two programs: the Civil Service Retirement System (CSRS) and the Federal Employees Retirement System (FERS). These annuities are financed through a combination of employee contributions and payments made by the federal government to the civil service retirement trust fund. This report discusses the two programs, how they work, and how they are financed.
Date: May 24, 2004
Creator: Purcell, Patrick J.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Congressional Salaries and Allowances

Description: This report provides basic information on congressional salaries and allowances. First, the report briefly summarizes the current salary of Members of Congress, limits on their outside earned income and honoraria, and applicable health insurance and retirement benefits. Second, it provides information on allowances available to Representatives and Senators to support them in their official and representational duties as Members. Third, it provides the salaries and allowances available to the Speaker of the House and the Vice President, as President of the Senate, and lists the salaries of congressional officers and officials and committee staff.
Date: August 5, 2004
Creator: Dwyer, Paul E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Automatic Enrollment in Section 401(k) Plans

Description: This report discusses enrollment practices for 401k retirement plans. Historically, most employers that have sponsored retirement savings plans under §401(k) of the Internal Revenue Code (IRC) have required employees to decide whether to enroll in the plan. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has issued rulings to inform employers that current law allows them to enroll employees automatically, provided that the employee is notified in advance and is permitted to leave the plan.
Date: October 14, 2004
Creator: Purcell, Patrick
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Social Security: The Cost-of-Living Adjustment in January 2005

Description: This report discusses how the cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) for Social Security benefits are determined. The 2.7% COLA payable in January 2005 was triggered by the rise in the CPI-W (Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers) from the third quarter of 2003 to the third quarter of 2004. This COLA triggers identical percentage increases in Supplemental Security Income (SSI), veterans' pensions, and railroad retirement benefits, and causes other changes in the Social Security program.
Date: October 19, 2004
Creator: Sidor, Gary
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Federal Employees: Pay and Pension Increases Since 1969

Description: Pay increases for current federal employees and cost-of-living adjustments (COLAs) for retired federal employees often differ because they are based on changes in different economic variables. Increases in pay for civilian federal workers are indexed to wage and salary increases in the private-sector, as measured by the Employment Cost Index (ECI), while federal retirement and disability benefits are indexed to price increases as measured by the Consumer Price Index (CPI). This report discusses the procedures for determining such increases.
Date: January 21, 2005
Creator: Purcell, Patrick J.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Military Death Benefits: Status and Proposals

Description: This report describes the various death benefits from the Department of Defense, Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), and Social Security available to certain survivors of members of the Armed Forces who die on active duty.
Date: January 24, 2006
Creator: Burrelli, David F & Corwell, Jennifer R
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Federal Employees: Pay and Pension Increases Since 1969

Description: Pay increases for current federal employees and cost-of-living adjustments (COLAs) for retired federal employees often differ because they are based on changes in different economic variables. Increases in pay for civilian federal workers are indexed to wage and salary increases in the private-sector, as measured by the Employment Cost Index (ECI), while federal retirement and disability benefits are indexed to price increases as measured by the Consumer Price Index (CPI). This report discusses the procedures for determining such increases.
Date: February 9, 2006
Creator: Purcell, Patrick J.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Market for Retirement Annuities

Description: A retirement annuity allows an individual to purchase a regular payment stream from an insurance company to last his lifetime. Despite the ability of the product to eliminate the risk that a retiree will outlive his assets, few retirement annuities have been sold in the individual market. In addition, the number of individuals who annuitize their defined contribution retirement plan balances remains small. New products are emerging that would offer alternate annuity designs and make annuity prices more attractive. This report discusses legislation has been proposed in the 109th Congress that would enhance the tax treatment of annuities and encourage the growth of stand-alone annuity and combined annuity and long-term care products.
Date: May 18, 2006
Creator: Ranade, Neela K.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department