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How Can I Get My Social Security Money Now

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Children Can Collect Social Security Benefits Too

How can I Lose my Social Security Benefits / SSD or Supplemental Security Income SSI?

Minor children of Social Security beneficiaries can be eligible for benefits. Children up to age 18 and disabled children older than 18 may be able to receive up to half of a parent’s Social Security benefit. The disability must have occurred before the age of 22. As long as the disability prevents the person from working, the adult child can continue collecting the benefit even after the parent has died.

Find Out How Much Money You Might Be Able To Get At One Time

Making the most of Social Security is essential, especially if you’re in or approaching retirement. The monthly payments will provide you with financial support for the rest of your life.

However, many people find that it’s useful to have a larger chunk of cash available right when they retire. Monthly checks are useful, but it’s hard to use them for big-ticket items. Fortunately, there’s a way for Social Security recipients to ask for and get a lump-sum payment. Before you use this strategy, though, it’s important to know what’s involved and what you’re potentially giving up.

How To Check Your Earnings Record

How might check your earnings record? In the past, Social Security mailed you a statement that contained your earnings record and benefit estimate. Today, however, you need to create a my Social Security account to review your earnings record. You can do that at .

When checking whether your earnings record is correct or not, keep the following in mind. One, theres no statute of limitations on correcting errors related to wages, according to Kurt Czarnowski, a principal at Czarnowski Consulting.

A person needs to provide proof of what the correct amount of earnings was, Czarnowski said at a recent National Association of Personal Financial Advisors conference. But even if it’s something back in 1976, if happen to have W-2, can make that correction.

Thats not true, however, when it comes to correcting self-employment income errors on your Social Security statement. You have only three years, three months and 15 days to correct those errors, Czarnowski explained.

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How To Calculate Social Security Benefits

Lets say your FRA is 66. If you start claiming benefits at age 66 and your full monthly benefit is $2,000, then youll get $2,000 per month. If you start claiming benefits at age 62, which is 48 months early, then your benefit will be reduced to 75% of your full monthly benefitalso called your primary insurance amount. In other words, youll get 25% less per month, and your check will be $1,500.

That reduced benefit wont increase once you reach age 66. Rather, youll continue to receive it for the rest of your life. It may go up over time due to cost-of-living adjustments , but only slightly. You can do the math for your own situation using the Social Security Administration Early or Late Retirement Calculator, one of a number of benefit calculators provided by the SSA that can also help you determine your FRA, the SSAs estimate of your life expectancy for benefit calculations, rough estimates of your retirement benefits, individualized projections of your benefits based on your personal work record, and more.

How Your Social Security Benefits Are Calculated

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Your Social Security benefits are based on the 35 calendar years in which you earned the most money. If you have fewer than 35 years of earnings, each year with no earnings will be factored in at zero. You can increase your Social Security benefit at any time by replacing a zero or low-income year with a higher-income year.

There is a maximum Social Security benefit amount you can receive, though it depends on the age you retire. For someone at full retirement age in 2021, the maximum monthly benefit is $3,113. For someone filing at age 70, the maximum monthly amount is $3,895.

You can estimate your own benefit by using Social Security’s online Retirement Estimator.

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Eliminated The Stretch Provision

The SECURE Act removed the stretch provision, which previously allowed non-spousal beneficiaries to withdraw the required minimum distributions from an inherited IRA until the account was depleted. Non-spousal beneficiaries must withdraw all of the funds in 10 years following the death of the original account holder, a requirement put in place on Jan. 1, 2020.

Will I Receive A Notice From The Social Security Administration Explaining My Benefits

Yes. That notice is usually called a Notice of Award. This notice will show the date of entitlement and the amounts of benefits for all months of back benefits. It will show the total amount of benefits to be paid to you. It will show the amount of benefits withheld for direct payment of attorneys fees. It may also give you information about your Medicare eligibility and monthly Medicare premium. It may also give you some information about when to expect a continuing disability review.

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Should You Jump On The Retirement Bandwagon

If you’re thinking about retiring, an estimated 6% COLA hike might tempt you to throw in the towel at work and claim Social Security benefits at 62. But heres why you dont want to do that.

And she uncovered something most people don’t know.

Her take is that anyone who is age 62 or older in 2022 and who is eligible for Social Security will profit from next years COLA even if they have not yet filed for benefits.

I worry that some people may rush to claim Social Security this year to benefit from the exceptionally large cost-of-living adjustment expected next January,” Franklin told me by email.

“Im sure most people do not realize that they automatically will benefit from next years COLA even if they have not yet filed for Social Security as long as they are at least 62 or older in 2022,” said Franklin, who wrote “Maximizing Social Security Benefits,” an online book that is available for $29.95 at MaximizingSocialSecurityBenefits.com.

If there are future inflation adjustments, she noted, those who are 62 and older would see inflation adjustments baked into future payments each year until they claim benefits all the way up to when they reach age 70.

She points out that the Social Security Administration notes: “Youre eligible for cost-of-living benefit increases starting with the year you become age 62. This is true even if you dont get benefits until your full retirement age or even age 70.”

Those who turn 62 next year and afterward face another issue, too.

When Will My Regular Monthly Benefits Begin

How Much Money Will You Get From Social Security?

Usually regular monthly benefits begin the month after you receive your check for past-due benefits, although occasionally people get a check for regular monthly benefits first. Your check will be sent out to arrive on the second, third or fourth Wednesday of the month, depending on what day of the month you were born. The check will pay benefits for the previous month. Thus, for example, the check for Januarys benefits will come in February.

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Do You Qualify For Extra Social Security Benefits

All workers who have earned 40 credits — where one credit is defined as $1,470 per month in 2021, and you may earn a maximum of four credits per year — qualify for Social Security retirement benefits when they turn 62, as well as disability benefits if a disability leaves them unable to work. But certain retirees need a little more help than others. That’s where Supplemental Security Income comes in.

These are additional benefits paid to certain workers and retirees to help them cover their essential expenses. You may qualify for these benefits if you meet the following criteria:

  • You are a U.S. citizen or resident alien who isn’t subject to an active warrant for deportation.
  • You’re a resident of one of the 50 states, Washington, D.C., or the Northern Mariana Islands.
  • You’re not absent from the U.S. for a full calendar month or 30 consecutive days or more during the year.
  • You’re not confined to an institution at the government’s expense.
  • You’ve applied for other cash benefits you may be eligible for, like Social Security retirement benefits and pensions.
  • You have limited income.
  • You are 65 or older, blind, or disabled.

Most of these requirements are pretty straightforward, except for what constitutes limited income. The easiest way to check if your income is low enough to qualify is to take five minutes to use the Benefit Eligibility Screener Tool. This will tell you about all types of Social Security benefits you qualify for.

Social Security Benefits For Workers Turning 60 In 2020 Will Very Likely Drop Due To The Coronavirus Pandemic

As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, about 3 million retired workers who turn 60 years old in 2020 will very likely have much lower lifetime Social Security benefits than previously expected. Without legislative changes, the average earner stands to lose nearly $1,500 per year for the rest of their life. Fortunately, there is a simple legislative changeexplored in detail belowthat would fix these problems without lowering the benefits of any other cohort of retirees. Chairman of the U.S. House Ways and Means Social Security Subcommittee, Rep. John Larson , has introduced such legislation*and Congress should fix this situation as soon as possible.

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Costs Of The Solution

Two issues that are likely to arise in any discussion of fixing this problem are its cost to the Social Security trust fund and its cost to the federal budget. With regard to the cost to the Social Security trust fund, there are three ways to look at the issue.

One way is to view the cost relative to costs in a world in which no pandemic had occurred. For example, the cost could be measured using the economic assumptions in the most recent Social Security trustees report , which were formulated before the pandemic began. From this perspective, the cost would be zero because the legislative change would restore the world of Social Security benefits to what it would have looked like had there been no pandemic.

A second way of looking at the issue is to view the cost of the change relative to costs in a world that reflected economic assumptions indicative of the economic recession caused by the pandemic. From this viewpoint, there would be a cost associated with fixing the problem. For example, the chief actuary of the SSA estimates that if the AWI in 2020 were to fall 5.9 percent below its 2019 level, the AWI adjustments proposed by Chairman Larson would cost $90 billion in present-value dollars for the 75-year period from 2020 through 2094about 0.02 percent of taxable payroll over that period. . The cost over the 10-year period from 2020 to 2029 would be about $21 billion in nominal dollars.

An Example Of Taxed Benefits

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Lets say you receive the maximum Social Security benefit for a worker retiring at FRA in 2021: $3,148 per month. Your spouse receives half as much, or $1,574 a month. Together, you receive $4,722 a month, or $56,664 per year. Half of that, or $28,332, counts toward your combined income for determining whether you have to pay tax on part of your Social Security benefits. Lets further assume that you dont have any nontaxable interest, wages, or other income except for your traditional individual retirement accounts required minimum distribution of $10,000 for the year.

Your combined income would be $38,332half of your Social Security income, plus your IRA distributionwhich would make up to 50% of your Social Security benefits taxable, because youve exceeded the $32,000 threshold. Now, you may be thinking, 50% of $56,664 is $28,332, and Im in the 12% tax bracket, so the tax on my Social Security benefits will be $3,399.84.

Fortunately, the calculation takes other factors into account, and your tax would really be a mere $225. You can read all about the taxation of Social Security benefits in Internal Revenue Service Publication 915.

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You Can Work And Still Receive Benefits

If youre younger than FRA, there is a limit to how much you can earn and still receive full Social Security benefits, according to Social Security. If youre younger than FRA during all of 2022, Social Security deducts $1 from your benefits for each $2 you earn above $19,560. If you reach FRA during 2022, Social Security deducts $1 from your benefits for each $3 you earn above $51,960 until the month you reach FRA.

Supplemental Security Income Benefits

Supplemental Security Income helps people who are unable to earn sufficient wages on their own. It is available to adults with disabilities, children with disabilities and people 65 or older. Individuals with enough work history may be eligible to receive SSI in addition to disability or retirement benefits. The amount individuals receive varies based on their other sources of income and where they live.

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Your Social Security Benefits Will Be Taxed

Most people know that you pay tax into the Social Security Trust Fund throughout your career, but did you know that you may also have to pay tax on your Social Security benefits once you start receiving them? Benefits lost their tax-free status in 1984, and the income thresholds for triggering tax on benefits haven’t been increased since then.

As a result, it doesn’t take a lot of income for your Social Security benefits to be pinched by Uncle Sam. For example, a married couple with a combined income of more than $32,000 may have to pay income tax on up to 50% of their Social Security benefits. Higher earners may have to pay income tax on up to 85% of their benefits.

You may also have to pay state income taxes on your Social Security benefits. See our list of the 13 States That Tax Social Security Benefits.

When A Spouse Dies

When to Pull From Your IRA Before Claiming Social Security

When one spouse dies, the surviving spouse is entitled to receive the higher of their own benefit or their deceased spouses benefit. Thats why financial planners often advise the higher-earning spouse to delay claiming. If the higher-earning spouse dies first, then the surviving, lower-earning spouse will receive a larger Social Security check for life.

When the surviving spouse hasnt reached their FRA, they will be entitled to prorated amounts starting at age 60. Once at their FRA, the surviving spouse is entitled to 100% of the deceased spouses benefit or their own benefit, whichever is higher.

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Whats Full Retirement Age

Full retirement age is when youre eligible to receive full Social Security benefits. Your full retirement age depends on your birth year: Under current law, if you were born in 1951 or later, your full retirement age is now some point after age 65all the way up to age 67 for those born after 1959. If you were born before 1951, youve already reached age 66 and full retirement age.

Retirement ages for full Social Security benefits

If you were born in

Your full retirement age is

1950 or earlier

Think Of Social Security As An Annuity

“Given todays longevity, it is more important than ever to maximize your Social Security benefit. Think of this as an annuity for your lifetime,” says Charlotte A. Dougherty, CFP®, founder of Dougherty & Associates, Cincinnati, Ohio.

“Social Security is the only 8% guaranteed investment around. Not only that, it is backed by the federal government,” says David Hunter, CFP®, Horizons Wealth Management, Inc., Asheville, N.C.

Although there are many planning options for maximizing Social Security benefits, they can be complex and only apply in certain circumstances. The following five planning tips are ones that everyone should know about in order to increase the size of their Social Security checks.

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How To Stop Social Security Check Payments

The SSA can not pay benefits for the month of a recipients death. That means if the person died in July, the check received in August must be returned. Find out how to return a check to the SSA.

If the payment is by direct deposit, notify the financial institution as soon as possible so it can return any payments received after death. For more about the requirement to return benefits for the month of a beneficiarys death, see the top of page 11 of this SSA publication.

Family members may be eligible for Social Security survivors benefits when a person getting benefits dies. Visit the SSA’s Survivors Benefits page to learn more.

Timing And Your Health Coverage

Scammers Stealing IDs for Social Security Benefits

Your health insurance coverage can also play a role in deciding when to claim Social Security benefits. Do you have a health savings account to which you would like to keep contributing? If so, note that if youre age 65 or older, then receiving Social Security benefits requires you to sign up for Medicare Part A, and once you sign up for Medicare Part A, youll no longer be allowed to add funds to your HSA.

The SSA also cautions that even if you delay receiving Social Security benefits until after age 65, you might still need to apply for Medicare benefits within three months of turning 65 to avoid paying higher premiums for life for Medicare Part B and Part D. If you are still receiving health insurance from your or your spouses employer, however, then you might not yet have to enroll in Medicare.

On March 17, 2020, all Social Security offices were closed completely due to the COVID-19 pandemic. As of Aug. 5, 2021, they are only open by appointment, and to get an appointment, you need to be in a limited, critical situation. Most people will have to transact their business online, by phone, or through the mail.

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