Dear Senior Caucus Member,
Repeal WEP Now!
--Contact Your Representatives to co-sponsor H.R. 82 The Social Security Fairness Act of 2023!
--Contact Your Senator to co-sponsor the companion Senate bill, S.597!
Our WEP team needs your help to eliminate WEP. HR.82 has 187 co-sponsors (See: Cosponsors - H.R.82 - 118th Congress (2023-2024): Social Security Fairness Act of 2023 | Congress.gov | Library of Congress) and we need more, while S.597 has 24 co-sponsors (See Cosponsors - S.597 - 118th Congress (2023-2024): A bill to amend title II of the Social Security Act to repeal the Government pension offset and windfall elimination provisions. | Congress.gov | Library of Congress)
Below you will find an EMAIL and a CALL script to use to contact your House Representative asking them to co-sponsor H.R.82 and S.597.
To contact your Representative and Senator, follow these steps:
- Click here and enter the Zip Code where you last lived in the U.S. It will then display your Representative and Senator [check].
- See: Cosponsors - H.R.82 - 118th Congress (2023-2024): Social Security Fairness Act of 2023 | Congress.gov | Library of Congress for the House to see if your Representative has already co-sponsored the bill.
See: https://www.congress.gov/bill/118th-congress/senate-bill/597/cosponsors?s=1&r=2&q=%7B%22search%22%3A%5B%22s.597%22%5D%7D [equivalent link] for the Senate to see if your Senator has also already co-sponsored the bill.
- Customize the scripts below to email or call (better yet, do both!) to ask them to co-sponsor H.R.82/S.597.
- Email [email protected] and say “Co-Sponsor DONE" in the subject line to let us know that you contacted your Representative.
- Optional: If they have already co-sponsored, write or call to thank them for their support! See that script below.
Background information is on the Seniors Caucus webpage Resources - Democrats Abroad (look under WEP)
Good luck and Many thanks,
Betsy Ettorre, Chair, Global Seniors Caucus
Brendan Read, Chair, Seniors Caucus WEP Committee
P.S. If you have been impacted by WEP and want to tell your WEP story let us know. Send it to us at [email protected]. We would then share it on our social media and web pages with your permission.
Email to Congressperson and Senator
Subject line: Need your support to repeal Windfall Elimination Provision (WEP)
Dear Congressperson (Senator) _________,
I am respectfully asking for your committed support in passing H.R. 82 — the Social Security Fairness Act of 2023 and S.597. The bill needs more co-sponsors and I would like you to co-sponsor H.R.82/S.597.
My name is_________, I am a U.S. citizen who lives in (Country of Residence) and I vote in your district in (U.S. town and state you vote). My Social Security benefits earned from my prior work history in the United States are being/will be unfairly reduced due to the Windfall Elimination Provision or WEP by the Social Security Amendments of 1983.
As I am sure you are aware, WEP applies to most people who receive both a pension from non-covered work (including certain foreign pensions) and Social Security benefits based on fewer than 30 years of substantial earnings in SocSec-covered employment or self-employment.
- Many retired Americans who live, or once lived abroad, have paid into Social Security. But they do not receive their full benefits or fair share of them from Social Security when they retire.
- WEP was meant to eliminate the advantage some workers received from overlapping full-retirement pensions supplemented by partial Social Security-covered employment. This is not the case with many people affected by WEP.
- Also, all too many beneficiaries only learn of WEP after they have retired, putting in a sudden, unexpected major crimp in their retirement plans. The reduced benefits substantially affect their and their family’s financial standing in later years.
- I am (will be) personally affected by these deductions (describe in what way), so this issue an important voting consideration for me when I vote by absentee ballot.
The problem that WEP was meant to resolve didn’t consider, in a fair and equitable way, the impact on overseas retirees who moved abroad for legitimate family, education, and career reasons. I ask for your support in finding a fair solution for all.
I hope that you can assure me that these bills will reach the floor for vote in this legislative session. Please commit and give your urgent support in helping to pass H.R.82, the Social Security Fairness Act of 2023 and S.597.
(Name of sender)
Voter in (Name your town again)
If your Representative or Senator has already committed to supporting H.R. 82/S. 597 thank them for their support.
Script to use to urge your House Representative to co-sponsor H.R.82 The Social Security Fairness Act of 2023/Senator to co-sponsor S.597.
Hello, I am a constituent who votes in [CITY/TOWN, STATE], but I am currently residing in and calling from [CITY, COUNTRY]. I was hoping to speak to the Representative/Senator or their staffer about the repeal of the Social Security Windfall Elimination Provision (WEP) that impacts your constituents like me who live outside the United States.
I am calling to ask Representative/Senator _____ to co-sponsor H.R.82/S.597
[Personalize your message using ideas from this script]
I am an ordinary US citizen. I moved to [Country] to [be with my partner/family/to take a job/other]. I am not wealthy. The complexity of investing for retirement due to double taxation of mutual funds and the unwillingness of banks in and outside the U.S. allowing pre-retirees to hold accounts and contribute to new investments, has left my pension funds lacking.
Most of the urgent need for WEP repeal has been focused on and sympathizing with retired public servants and teachers at home, even with their prior knowledge about WEP deductions on their future Social Security because of their non-covered pensions.
But Americans living abroad often have worked at least part of their careers within the U.S. contributing to Social Security. Later, we entered the confusing and complicated environment of preparing for retirement while living abroad.
WEP applies to most people who receive both a pension from non-covered work (including certain foreign pensions) and Social Security benefits based on fewer than 30 years of substantial covered employment or self-employment earnings. Spousal Social Security benefits are also unfairly eliminated due to WEP, making my family’s long-term financial stability more worrying.
The rules for WEP and the calculation for the deduction are complicated. This leaves many retirees in the dark until they get the bad news that their paid-for benefits are being cut. Adding to this, the complexity of the Foreign Equalization Treaties and taxation of passive investing income affecting U.S. citizens abroad hinders us from properly preparing for our retirement. Sometimes we cannot even open a retirement account inside or outside the States for various reasons.
The current WEP law is punishing and unfair. Can we expect to see the congress(wo)man co-sponsor H.R.82 Social Security Fairness Act of 2023? S.597?
I am (will be) personally affected by these WEP deductions, so this issue an important voting consideration for me, when I vote by absentee ballot. I hope that you can assure me that this bill will reach the floor for vote in this legislative session because American retirees living abroad are counting on you.
Thank you for your time listening to my concerns.
If your rep/Senator supports these bills: I want to thank the Congress(wo)man for promising to support H.R. 82 Social Security Fairness Act of 2023/S. 597. I/My family relies on the security that my previously paid-in contributions provide for a secure future in my retired years.
If your rep/Senator does not support these bills: I was incredibly disappointed to see that Congress(wo)man_____ has not committed to supporting H.R. 82 Social Security Fairness Act of 2023/S. 597 which would provide more fairness to the Social Security program and security for retired senior constituents in our district.