For those who have worked throughout their adult life and are now nearing the age of retirement, knowing exactly when is the best time to claim Social Security retirement benefits is not always clear. In fact, many people are not even aware of the fact that your benefit amount changes based on the age at which you start collecting your Social Security benefits.
If you live in St. John and are approaching retirement age or/and want to plan for your future, attending one of our free Social Security workshops hosted by Harvest Social Security QA can provide you with many of the answers you are looking for. In the meantime, consider the following information regarding when you should start collecting Social Security benefits:
When you should start collecting benefits may not be the same as when you are allowed to start collecting benefits, which is as early as age 62 as explained by the Social Security Administration (SSA). You have to claim your benefits by age 70.
Whether you claim your benefits as early as age 62 or wait until age 70 to start claiming your benefits will have a significant effect on your benefit amount. To be sure, if you start your benefits early, your monthly benefit amount will be reduced in respect to the number of months before your full retirement age that you started claiming benefits. Your full retirement age depends on when you were born. For example, for those born in 1937 or earlier, the full retirement age is 65. For those born in the 1960s and later, the full retirement age is 67. Consider a situation in which your were born in 1961, which means that your full retirement age is 67. However, you want to start claiming benefits as soon as you are able to – at age 62. As a result, your benefit amount will be reduced by about 30 percent! If you wait until you are at least 66, the reduction is only about 6.7 percent. However, typically, waiting as long as you can to start claiming benefits is ideal.
Keep in mind that you also have the option to delay benefits until you reach age 70. If you choose to delay benefits, your benefit amount will be increased in respect to the number of months between your full retirement age and the time you start claiming benefits.
In addition to your full retirement age, there can be a number of other factors that affect when you start claiming benefits. For example, whether you are married and your spouse is eligible for benefits too, whether or not you are disabled and need disability insurance, and more are all important considerations. To learn more about when you should start collecting Social Security benefits, sign up for one of our free Harvest Social Security QA workshops. If you live in St. John, you can find a workshop near you by browsing our upcoming workshops online.
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