Frequently Asked Social Security Questions
Take a look below at our most Frequently Asked Questions when it comes to Social Security Benefits. Because every situation is unique, we understand you may have different questions and would be happy to answer them during a 1-1 FREE consultation.
Age 67 addition of 8%
Age 68 addition of 16%
Age 69 addition of 24%
Age 70 addition of 32%
The wife should take her benefits as early as possible at age 62.
RATIONALE: Husbands usually go first, so the higher benefit at age 70 leaves a higher survivor benefit for the widow.
Even though the wife will take a 25-30% haircut on her benefit, the study concluded that the reduced benefit would be a temporary situation taking into account her expected longevity.
By waiting until FRA the surviving spouse would receive 100% of spousal benefit. Taking it early will reduce the overall benefit (age 60 is reduced to 71.5% of FRA benefit)
Depending on age, reductions are between 24% at age 61 to 0 at FRA.
You can collect either your own benefit or a widows benefit…but not both.
Social Security will give you the greater of the two.
Do the math. Sometimes it’s better to take survivor benefits while letting your own record accrue until age 70.
AGE 66 = 50.00%
AGE 65 = 45.84%
AGE 64 = 41.67%
AGE 63 = 37.50%
AGE 62 = 35.00%
You can only claim one benefit.
YOUR SPOUSE MUST HAVE APPLIED FOR BENEFITS BEFORE YOU CAN!
Divorced spouses. If married 10 years or more
Are both over age 62
YOU ARE ELIGIBLE FOR BENEFITS BASED ON EX-SPOUSE EARNINGS
(this has no effect on the ex-spouse’s benefits)
Even if the former spouse has not filed for benefits, an ex-spouse is eligible to receive benefits on the former spouse’s record provided they have been divorced for at least 2 years (and follows the above conditions).
More and more grandparents are finding themselves raising their grandchildren. Social Security will pay benefits to grandchildren when the grandparent retires, becomes disabled, or dies, if certain conditions are met. Generally, the biological parents of the child must be deceased or disabled, or the grandparent must legally adopt the grandchild.
To receive this benefit, your grandchild must have begun living with you before age 18 and received at least one half of his or her support from you for the year before the month you became entitled to retirement or disability insurance benefits, or died. Also, the natural parent(s) of the child must not be making regular contributions to his or her support.
If your grandchild was born during the one-year period, you must have lived with and provided at least one-half of the child’s support for substantially the entire period from the date of birth to the month you became entitled to benefits.
Your grandchild may qualify for benefits under these circumstances, even if he or she is a step-grandchild. However, if you and your spouse are already receiving benefits, you would need to adopt the child for them to qualify for benefits.
We’ll do a preliminary analysis based on your answers to our Social Security Benefits form. From there, is we can’t get you more money, your consultation and analysis are free. If our findings indicate that you could be getting higher social security benefits, we’ll do an in-depth analysis and help you file to maximize your benefits for a $250 fee.
Year of Birth Full Retirement Age
1955 66 and 2 months
1956 66 and 4 months
1957 66 and 6 months
1958 66 and 8 months
1959 66 and 10 months
1960 and later 67
If you are under full retirement age for the entire year, there will be a deduction of $1 from your benefit payments for every $2 you earn above the annual limit. For 2019, that limit is $17,640.
In the year you reach full retirement age, the deduction is $1 in benefits for every $3 you earn above a different limit. In 2019, the limit on your earnings is $46,920.
When you reach full retirement age there is no longer a deduction, no matter how much you make.
Single income tax filer with AGI between $25,000 – $34,000
= 50% of benefits, or 50% of the amount of AGI over $25,000 (whichever is less)
Married income tax filer with AGI between $32,000 – $44,000
= 50% of benefits, or 50% of the amount of AGI over $44,000 (whichever is less)
Age 62 reduction of 25%
Age 63 reduction of 20%
Age 64 reduction of 13.3%
Age 65 reduction of 6.7%