There is talk in Congress of implementing a means test for Social Security recipients as a solution to the Social Security debt. The discussions are that anyone who makes $1 million per year will not receive any benefits. Those people are considered wealthy.
Recently there was an after-hours investment seminar in St. Louis co-sponsored by several financial analysts and brokerage firms. Some in the audience (in or nearing retirement) asked how this means test could impact their investments. The presenters' response was unanimous: Anyone who has saved over time will be penalized for saving.
They elaborated: Once a bill becomes law, bureaucrats within any administration can make small changes to make the law easier to implement. They can change the word "makes" to "has" or "a percentage of has." The audience's alarm bells went off. It would take very little effort by the federal government to computer link each individual's net worth via their savings, retirements, 401(k)s, etc.
A simple graph can be created with "net worth" on the horizontal axis and the vertical axis is the percentage of Social Security benefits. Example: If an individual has saved 50 percent of $1 million, he would receive 50 percent of the promised Social Security benefits.
Those who were slow to have a second home, a nicer car or other new toys but instead saved for their own retirement may have taken the wrong approach. The American people need to be cautious of future federal legislation.