Created: May 4, 2018
Modified: November 11, 2022

8 Social Security FAQ’s

What You’ll Learn:
Understand misconceptions around Social Security and avoid mistakes that can cost you thousands of dollars.

Main Questions Asked:

  • How much is my Social Security potentially worth?
  • How do I get the most out my Social Security benefits?

8 Ways Get the Most Out of Your Social Security Benefits

  1. When am I eligible to receive my benefits? Everybody eligible can receive their benefits at age 62 and they need to be taken at age 70. Widows and widowers can collect at age 60.
  2. Am I eligible for additional benefits? There is a disability component to Social Security that many people overlook, so it’s important to do your research to see if you might be eligible.
  3. Will the Social Security administration help me with claiming my benefits? They aren’t going to hold your hand and offer you personalized advice on how to maximize your benefits. They’ll tell you how to fill out the form, but they don’t offer personalized advice tailored to your specific financial situation.
  4. Is it better to delay taking my Social Security benefits or take them early? This gets into the debate of whether everyone should wait till age 70 or not. How much money do you have saved in other assets? What if your life expectancy is short? There are so many factors to consider when it comes to claiming your Social Security benefits.
  5. Do I have to pay taxes on my Social Security benefits? Maybe, and maybe not. You could pay taxes on as much as 85% of your Social Security benefits. This depends on the other income on your return. Making a portfolio more tax efficient can make a huge difference.
  6. What happens to our benefits as a couple when one spouse dies? If one spouse dies the smaller check goes away. Sometimes we set up an extra account to replace that lost income.
  7. If I work in retirement can I still collect my benefits? You might pay an earnings penalty if you earn too much. If you earn over $16,000 In any given year, you will end up giving back some of those earnings. Once you reach full retirement age, there is no limit on the amount of money you can make.
  8. Is Social Security going to go broke and leave me with nothing? Joel doesn’t believe the promise will be broken for anyone over 55, however, younger people may not be able to count on it in the future.
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