The Social Security act of 1905 (1905 SSA) is the law that established the Social Security system, established the benefits that come with it, and the rules of how benefits are paid out.
In its original form, the law was designed to give workers who were eligible for benefits an incentive to take them up.
The act gave workers a set amount of money, known as the payroll tax, to use to buy items like clothes, housing, cars, or equipment.
It also provided a system of checks that allowed workers to make tax payments if they paid taxes for too long.
But it also provided many workers with additional benefits, such as Social Security disability benefits, paid by employers to workers who worked in their stead.
Under the act, workers would receive benefits if they worked full time, if they had at least six months of income, and if they met certain other requirements.
Today, the system pays benefits to approximately 65 million Americans and is administered through two programs, the Federal Disability Insurance program (FDIP) and the Supplemental Security Income (SSI).
Both programs cover approximately 30 million people.
The Social Science article This Social Science blog discusses how Social Security works.