Social Security is the Government Pension Plan that is paid for by taxes on your income.
Social Security replaces about 40% of your income after retiring. However, you will generally need 70% or more of your pre-retirement income. Here in towns like Wilton and North Salem the cost of living is high so it doesn't go far.
In the big picture, you need more retirement savings than Social Security. They also need private pensions, savings, and investments.
You only need 10 years of paying into the system, but you need 35 to maximize the benefits. The current maximum benefit at 67 is about $3,500 per month or $42,000 per year, but most people only receive about 1,350 or 16,200.
Your retirement benefit is based on your earnings in your 35 highest-paid years.
Uncle Sam manages to get his money in many ways and your social security is taxable if your income is over $25,000.
While simple in concept, the Social Security system is pretty complicated in application and it may help you to consult an expert when making these decisions.
The government actually has a pretty good website on Social Security with a wealth of information and calculators.