Social Security has been controversial lately, with some arguing that cuts are necessary while others believe expanding benefits is the better move. If you're getting Social Security benefits or will in the near future, the debate has big implications for you and your retirement finances.

In the following video, Dan Caplinger, The Motley Fool's director of investment planning, goes through the current debate. Dan notes that those suggesting cuts have focused on ideas like using the chained CPI for cost-of-living adjustments or raising retirement ages, and although the new proposal from Rep. Paul Ryan doesn't directly address Social Security reform, others have looked at other ideas to save money on Social Security. Meanwhile, Dan points to other lawmakers looking to expand Social Security, using the strategy of removing the $117,000 ceiling on Social Security taxes to help give recipients bigger benefits and larger cost-of-living adjustments. Dan concludes that everyone needs to look closely at the debate to see how your own benefits could be affected, but that the battle could take years to play out.

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Dan Caplinger and The Motley Fool have no position in any of the stocks mentioned. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.