Wednesday, September 28, 2022

How Do You Calculate Your Social Security Income

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State Taxes On Social Security Benefits

How to Calculate Your Social Security Benefits

Everything weve discussed above is about your federal income taxes. Depending on where you live, you may also have to pay state income taxes.

There are 13 states that collect taxes on at least some Social Security income. Four of those states follow the same taxation rules as the federal government. So if you live in one of those four states then you will pay the states regular income tax rates on all of your taxable benefits .

The other nine states also follow the federal rules but offer deductions or exemptions based on your age or income. So in those nine states, you likely wont pay tax on the full taxable amount.

The other 37 states do not tax Social Security income.

State Taxes on Social Security Benefits
Taxed According to Federal RulesMinnesota, North Dakota, Vermont, West Virginia
Partially TaxedColorado, Connecticut, Kansas, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Mexico, Rhode Island, Utah
No State Tax on Social Security BenefitsAlabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Delaware, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Mississippi, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, Washington, Wisconsin, Wyoming

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How Inflation Impacts Your Pia

Your PIA is calculated at age 62. If you wait beyond age 62, cost-of-living adjustments will be applied to your PIA for each year afterward.

If you have already had most of your 35 years of earnings, and you are near age 62 today, the age 70 benefit amount you see on your Social Security statement will likely be higher due to these cos- of-living adjustments. Many people do not account for this when doing their own calculations, which can lead them to think that taking Social Security early is a better deal, when waiting is often the better deal.

In the table below, our hypothetical worker, born in 1954, is eligible for full retirement at age 66. The column on the right shows the effect of inflation for waiting beyond age 62 to take their benefits.

Effect of Age on Claiming Benefits
Year

Read Also: Social Security Benefits After Retirement

Why Do Clients Need To Understand Provisional Income

The provisional income formula is particularly interesting because only 50% of the clients Social Security benefit is included in the calculation. This partial inclusion can create highly tax efficient retirement income streams when an advisor actively coordinates the amount of IRA withdrawals and other incomes. Thats why its critical to talk about retirement income planning and to explain to clients how proactively determining income taxes is a significant part of creating an effective retirement income strategy. Clients should understand how their decisions will determine what taxes they must pay now and in the future. Financial advisors must clearly explain to clients what they should expect regarding Social Security benefits, especially when it comes to taxes associated with decisions surrounding retirement income. Precise scenario planning using software like Tax Clarity® and Income Insight® can help financial advisors create retirement income strategies that support their clients needs.

Want Retirement Income That Doubles Your Social Security Here’s How

How to Calculate Social Security Benefits: 13 Steps

    In 2022, the average Social Security benefit will total $1,657 each month. Since this won’t provide enough income for most people to live on it, supplementing your retirement benefits with income from savings is essential.

    Social Security benefits are designed to replace about 40% of pre-retirement income, when around 80% is what you’ll likely need.

    So, bringing in a total household income that doubles your Social Security should leave you in pretty good shape. But how can you make that happen? Here are the steps you’ll need to take.

    Also Check: Estimated Social Security Benefits At Age 65

    How Much Of Your Income Is Subject To Social Security Taxes

    Here’s where it gets a little trickier — not all income is subject to Social Security tax.

    For 2017, Social Security tax is only applied to the first $127,200 of income per person, and this limit applies to both employees and self-employed individuals. Note that this is a per-person limit, not per job. If you earn $120,000 from your primary job and an additional $20,000 from a side job, only $7,200 of the side job income will be subject to Social Security taxes.

    Furthermore, only “earned” income is considered. Dividend income, for example, is not subject to Social Security tax, and the same goes for other passive sources of income. The only types of income subject to Social Security tax are wages, salaries, tips, bonuses, and self-employment income that results from a business you actively participate in.

    How Ssi Differs From Ssdi

    SSI is slightly different from SSDI, although both programs are run by the Social Security Administration. SSI is a cooperative program between your state and the federal government.

    Supplemental Security Income is a program that is strictly need-based, according to income and assets, and is funded by general fund taxes. SSI is called a means-tested program, meaning it has nothing to do with work history, but strictly with financial need.

    SSI disability benefits are available to low-income individuals who havent earned enough work credits to qualify for SSDI.

    Read Also: When Should You Apply For Social Security

    Tips For Saving On Taxes In Retirement

    • A financial advisor can help you align your tax strategy to maximize your retirement income. SmartAssets free tool matches you with financial advisors in your area in 5 minutes. If youre ready to be matched with local advisors who can help you achieve your financial goals, get started now.
    • What you pay in taxes during your retirement will depend on how retirement friendly your state is. So if you want to decrease tax bite, consider moving to a state with fewer taxes that affect retirees.
    • Another way to save in retirement is to downsize your home. Moving into a smaller home could lower your property taxes and it could also lower your other housing costs.

    Your Monthly Benefits For Ssi

    How To Calculate Federal Income Taxes – Social Security & Medicare Included

    Calculating your monthly benefits for SSI is simple. If you meet the qualifications as described below, and your application for SSI is approved, you will receive benefits of $733 per month or $1,100 per month , minus a portion of your current income.

    The federal amount for SSI is set in January of every year. You may receive an additional payment on top of your SSI benefits called a State Supplementary Payment. The availability of this program varies from one state to another.

    Read Also: How To Hide Money From Social Security Disability

    Full Retirement Age Affects The Amount Of Your Benefits And More

    Full retirement age is the age at which you can claim your standard Social Security benefit, or your primary insurance amount , from Social Security. Your PIA is the standard amount you can expect to receive based on your inflation-adjusted average wages earned throughout your career. Full retirement age is 66 for those born in 1954 and 67 for those born in 1960 or later — it varies depending on your birth year.

    It is important to know your full retirement age, as it affects when you can claim Social Security without reducing your benefits, the amount of delayed retirement credits you can earn in order to raise your benefits, and how much you can earn from working while receiving Social Security without forfeiting any of your benefits.

    Theres An Annual Social Security Cost

    One of the most attractive features of Social Security benefits is that every year the government adjusts the benefit for inflation. Known as a cost-of-living adjustment, or COLA, this inflation protection can help you keep up with rising living expenses during retirement. The Social Security COLA is quite valuable its the equivalent of buying inflation protection on a private annuity, which can cost a pretty penny.

    Because the COLA is calculated based on changes in a federal consumer price index, the size of the COLA depends largely on broad inflation levels determined by the government. In 2021, Social Security beneficiaries will see a 1.3% COLA in their monthly Social Security benefits.

    The Kiplinger Letter forecast in March that the 2022 COLA would be 3%, which would be the largest increase since 2012 when Social Security benefits ticked up 3.6%.

    Heres what COLAs have been in other recent years:

    • 2009: 5.8%
    • 2021: 1.3%

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    How Your Social Security Benefits Are Calculated

    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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    When Will I Receive My Social Security Check

    The Social Security Administration’s payment calendar helps recipients plan for payments. If you were born in the first 10 days of your birth month, then you receive payments by the second Wednesday of the month. Those born on the 11-20 receive payments by the third Wednesday. Those born on the 21-31 receive payments by the fourth Wednesday. However, those who began receiving payments before May 1997 receive payments by the third day of each month.

    What Does Aarps Social Security Benefits Calculator Do

    The calculator provides an estimate of your Social Security benefits, based on your earnings history and age. Our tool also helps you see what percentage of daily expenses your payments can cover, and how you can increase your benefits by waiting to collect. It can also tell you how your retirement earnings will be affected if you keep working after you claim your Social Security benefit.

    Also Check: How To Calculate My Social Security Benefit Amount

    Your Monthly Social Security Benefits Grow The Longer You Wait To Claim

    You can collect Social Security benefits as soon as you turn 62, but taking benefits before your full retirement age results in a permanent benefits reduction of as much as 25% to 30%, depending on your full retirement age.

    If you wait until you hit full retirement age to claim Social Security benefits, youll receive 100% of your earned benefits. Or you can keep waiting to claim your Social Security benefits all the way to age 70. There’s a big bonus to delaying your claim — your monthly Social Security benefit will grow by 8% a year until age 70. Any cost-of-living adjustments will be included, too, so you don’t forgo those by waiting.

    Waiting to claim your Social Security benefits can benefit your heirs as well. By waiting to take his benefit, a high-earning husband, for example, can ensure that his low-earning wife will receive a much higher survivor benefit in the event he dies before her. That extra income of up to 32% could make a big difference for a widow whose household is down to one Social Security benefit.

    Are Social Security Benefits Taxable

    Provisional Income (How to calculate taxes on Social Security)

    If you have a lot of income from other sources, up to 85% of your Social Security benefits will be considered taxable income. If the combination of your Social Security benefits and other income is below $25,000, your benefits wonât be taxed at all. The amount of your benefits that is subject to taxes is calculated on a sliding scale based on your income. Money that Social Security recipients pay in income taxes on their benefits goes back into funding Social Security and Medicare.

    If your retirement income is high enough that your benefits are taxable, how do you pay those benefits? You can ask Social Security for an IRS Voluntary Withholding Request Form if youâd like the government to withhold taxes from your Social Security benefits. Otherwise, youâre expected to file quarterly tax returns to pay these taxes over the course of the year.

    That covers federal income taxes. What about state income taxes? That depends. In 13 states, your Social Security benefits will be taxed as income, either in whole or in part the remaining states do not tax Social Security income.

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    How To Calculate Your Social Security Benefit

    Calculating your estimated Social Security benefit is no easy task. Your best bet may be to request a Social Security benefits estimate from the SSA. This will contain an estimate of your benefit at age 62, at your FRA, and at age 70, based on your current work history.

    In addition to these estimates, the SSA also has a series of Social Security benefits calculators that can help you plan for retirement. You can also use this calculator from AARP to estimate the best age to start claiming your benefits.

    Number Of Credits Needed For Survivors Benefits

    The number of credits needed for family members to be eligible for survivors benefits depends on your age when you die. The younger you are, the fewer credits needed. Nobody needs more than 40 credits.

    Under a special rule, we can pay benefits to your children and your spouse caring for your children, even if your record doesn’t have the number of credits needed. They can get benefits if you have credits for one and one-half year’s work in the three years before your death.

    If you are already receiving retirement or disability benefits at the time of your death, we will pay your survivors based on that entitlement. We will not have to determine your credits again.

    Read Also: Social Security Change Of Mailing Address

    Information For Government Employees

    Some federal employees and employees of state or local government agencies may be eligible for a pension based on earnings not covered by Social Security.

    If you didn’t pay Social Security taxes on your government earnings and you are eligible for Social Security benefits, the formula used to figure your benefit amount may be reduced.

    If you are eligible for Social Security benefits on your own record and a pension not covered by Social Security, the Windfall Elimination provision, or WEP may affect your benefits.

    If you are eligible for Social Security benefits on your spouse’s record, and a pension not covered by Social Security, the Government Pension Offset, or GPO, may affect your benefits.

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