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Retirement Planning > Social Security

Majority of seniors fear impact of social program changes

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A LIMRA study shows the majority of retirees are concerned about retirement plans falling through because of tax raises and changes to Medicare and Social Security.

The study’s findings were presented at the 2011 Retirement Industry Conference and found more than 85 percent of retirees ages 55-79 are dependent on Social Security, and 75 percent get income from a pension plan. Another 44 percent receive income from investments and taxable savings; 35 percent from an annuity, and about 25 percent from working, defined contribution plans and IRAs.

Marie Rice, corporate vice president of LIMRA Retirement Research, says many previously secure seniors are realizing “the uncertainty of the times and how vulnerable they are.” She goes on, saying, “A significant change in public policy, like Social Security and Medicare benefits, could be disastrous for many retirees – particularly those with lower income and asset levels.”

For those retirees without a pension plan, it is vital they think about other retirement solutions, Rice adds. “Our industry is uniquely qualified to provide solutions to protect retirees and help them achieve their financial goals,” she says.

The study also found less than half of retirees had worked with a professional advisor, and only 22 percent had a formal written plan.