Wednesday, August 10, 2022

When Can I Apply For Social Security

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When Am I Eligible

ð´Can I Apply For Social Security Retirement Benefits In Advance of Age 62

Depending on when you were born, you will be eligible for full retirement benefits as early as age 65 or as late as age 67.

  • If you were born before 1938, your full retirement age is 65.
  • If you were born from 1938 to 1942, the age ranges from 65 and two months to 65 and 10 months.
  • If you were born from 1943 to 1954, its 66.
  • If you were born from 1955 to 1959, it ranges from 66 and two months to 66 and 10 months.
  • If you were born in 1960 or later, its 67.

You canopt to receive Social Security as early as age 62, but if you do, then your monthly benefits will be permanently reduced. For example, if you take benefits at 62 and your full retirement age is 66, then your benefits will be reduced by 25%.

If you postpone taking benefits past your full retirement age, then you will be rewarded with a higher benefit: 8% for each year up to age 70 , when benefits max out and there is no further incentive to delay signing up.

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Tax Considerations For Social Security Benefits

How do these tax considerations affect when you should apply for Social Security benefits? At todays , they may not have much of an impact on most people. Still, tax rates and income thresholds can change, so its worth remembering that you will lose less of your Social Security to taxes if you are in a lower marginal tax bracket when you begin to collect.

You should also note that if you decide to return to work, even part-time, and arent yet at your FRA, your Social Security benefits may be temporarily reduced. The reduction is $1 for every $2 of earned income over $18,960 in 2021 . During the year when you reach your FRA, your benefits will be reduced by $1 for every $3 in income over $50,520 in 2021 until the month when you become fully eligible. That money isnt lost, however. The SSA will credit it to your record when you reach your FRA, resulting in a higher benefit.

Original Card For A Us Born Child

Important

Social Security must verify a birth record for all U.S.-born applicants who apply for an original SSN. An exception is made for a parent who applies for a baby’s SSN at the hospital when the baby is born. To verify a birth record, we will contact the office that issued it.

All documents must be either originals or copies certified by the issuing agency. We cannot accept photocopies or notarized copies of documents. We also cannot accept a receipt showing you applied for the document.

Get a certified copy of a document showing a birth, marriage or divorce that took place in the United States.

Adoption

In some cases, we can assign your adopted child a number before the adoption is complete, but you may want to wait. Then, you can apply for the number using your child’s new name. If you want to claim your child for tax purposes while the adoption is still pending, contact the Internal Revenue Service for Form W-7A, Application for Taxpayer Identification Number for Pending U.S. Adoptions. For more information, see Social Security Numbers For Children .

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Apply For Retirement Benefits

Starting your Social Security retirement benefits is a major step on your retirement journey. This page will guide you through the process of applying for retirement benefits when youre ready to take that step. Our online application is a convenient way to apply on your own schedule, without an appointment. You can also apply by phone or by appointment at a Social Security office.

What Documents Do I Need To Prove My Identity

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Social Security will ask to see your current U.S. immigration documents. Acceptable documents include:

  • I-551 Permanent Resident Card
  • I-94 Arrival/Departure Record with unexpired foreign passport, or admission stamp in the unexpired foreign passport or
  • I-766 Employment Authorization Document, from DHS.

Important

You must present original documents or copies certified by the agency that issued them. We cannot accept photocopies or notarized copies. All documents must be current . We cannot accept a receipt showing you applied for the document.

We may use one document for two purposes. For example, we may use your U.S. passport as proof of both citizenship and identity.

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Social Security Number Application Stepsfor F

  • Complete and print out Social Security Application Form SS-5.
  • Collect the additional required forms and documentation .
  • Submit the application and the required documents in person at the Social Security Administration’s office. Request a verification receipt of your application.
  • Wait approximately two weeks for the Social Security card to arrive in the mail.
  • Present the Social Security card to employer for review.
  • Store the original Social Security card in a safe place. Do not carry it with you.
  • Spouses Who Dont Qualify For Their Own Social Security

    Spouses who didnt work at a paid job or didnt earn enough credits to qualify for Social Security on their own are eligible to receive benefits starting at age 62 based on their spouses record. As with claiming benefits on your own record, your spousal benefit will be reduced if you take it before reaching your FRA. The highest spousal benefit that you can receive is half of the benefit that your spouse is entitled to at their FRA.

    While spouses get a lower benefit if they claim before reaching their own FRA, they will not get a larger spousal benefit by waiting to claim after their FRAsay, at age 70. However, a nonworking or lower-earning spouse may get a larger spousal benefit if the working spouse has some late-career, high-earning years that boost their benefits.

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    What You Need For Retirement Benefits

    Here are the documents you will need when applying for Social Security Benefits:

    • Proof of citizenship in the United States or proof of lawful permanent resident status if born outside the U.S.
    • You need your original birth certificate, not a copy. If you do not have an original, you can include a copy that is certified by the hospital or agency that issued the original one.
    • A copy of your W-2 form for the current/previous year or if you were self-employed, a copy of last years tax return.
    • If you served in the military before 1968 a copy of your DD-214 Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty.

    You will also need to provide your recent earnings, eligibility for a federal pension, marital history, and whether other family members can claim any benefits on your record.

    Applying For Social Security Is Meant To Be Easy

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    As you can see, it really isnt very difficult to apply for Social Security benefits, whether retirement or survivor. The SSA does try to make it as easy as possible. Just be sure that no matter how you apply you have the proper information and documents with you. If you forget even one, you might stand in line for an hour only to be told you must come back later with the proper documents and information.

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    How To File An Application For Social Security Retirement Benefits

    • In person: You will need an appointment in order to apply in person for your Social Security benefits. You will need to find and contact your local SSA office to make an appointment. Call to find the local office.
    • Online: You can apply for Social Security benefits online anytime you choose 24 hours a day/7 days a week. This is, in fact, the easiest way to do so, but be aware that you may not be able to apply for all your benefits online. You might, however, need to complete the application either in-person or on the phone. The online system will tell you how to proceed.

    The Downside Of Early Applications

    Applying for Social Security benefits at age 62 can lower the amount of your monthly benefits by as much as 30%. This can significantly reduce the available funds you will have to enjoy your retirement. Delaying your application for Social Security, on the other hand, can have a positive impact on the amount you will receive each month in these benefits.

    The Social Security Administration has established a Full Retirement Age of between 66 and 67 for most retirees. You can see the exact amount of your earned benefits by visiting the Social Security website. This online resource can also provide information on your FRA and the impact of claiming your Social Security benefits at various stages of your journey.

    Applying for Social Security at age 62 not only affects the amount you receive in benefits. Cost-of-living adjustments, known as COLA, are based on your benefit amount, you will receive a smaller COLA increase than if you had waited until your FRA to apply for Social Security.

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    Should I Wait Until Full Retirement Age To Apply For Social Security

    Receiving Social Security at age 62 means that you will receive a reduced payment compared with waiting for full retirement age. For those born in 1960 or later, the reduction is 30%, and all reductions are permanent. If you delay taking your benefits past full retirement age, then you receive an 8% increase for each full year that you do so, up until you reach 70, at which point the increases stop.

    Every individual can calculate their own full retirement age based on their specific birthday, to consider locking in the maximum amount of Social Security benefits.

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    You can replace your child’s Social Security card for free if it is lost or stolen. You are limited to three replacement cards in a year and 10 during a lifetime. Legal name changes and other exceptions do not count toward these limits. For example, changes in immigration status that require card updates may not count toward these limits. Also, you may not be affected by these limits if you can prove you need the card to prevent a significant hardship.

    In general, only noncitizens who have permission to work from the Department of Homeland Security can apply for a Social Security number. If your child does not have permission to work but needs a Social Security number for other purposes, see “If your child does not have permission to work” for further information.

    Important

    You must present original documents or copies certified by the agency that issued them. We cannot accept photocopies or notarized copies. All documents must be current . We cannot accept a receipt showing you applied for the document.

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    Documents You May Need To Provide

    We may ask you to provide documents to show that you are eligible, such as:

    • Birth certificate or other proof of birth
    • Proof of U.S. citizenship or lawful alien status if you were not born in the United States
    • U.S. military discharge paper if you had military service before 1968
    • W-2 forms and/or self-employment tax returns for last year.
    • Final divorce decree, if applying as a divorced spouse and

    Important

    We accept photocopies of W-2 forms, self-employment tax returns or medical documents, but we must see the original of most other documents, such as your birth certificate.

    Do not delay applying for benefits because you do not have all the documents. We will help you get them.

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    How To Get A Social Security Number

    There are two ways that you can get a social security number and card:

    1. If you are age 18 or older, you can apply for a social security number in your home country when you apply for an immigrant visa with the U.S. Department of State. The U.S. government will use the same information that you give to apply for an immigrant visa to apply for an SSN.

    Your social security card will arrive at your mailing address about three weeks after you arrive in the U.S. If you apply for the Social Security number outside of the U.S., you do not have to visit an American Social Security office after entry into the United States.

    2. If you are not an immigrant or did not apply for a Social Security number when you applied for an immigrant visa, you must bring your petition and approval notices showing your legal immigration status and approved authorization to work in the United States. Then you should apply for a Social Security number and card by visiting a Social Security office in the U.S.

    The Social Security Administration recommends that you wait ten days after arriving in the country to “make it easier for us to verify your Department of Homeland Security documents online, which will speed processing of your Social Security number application.” Applying for a Social Security number is free.

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    What Is The Future Of Social Security

    If youre skeptical about the future of Social Security or wary of potential changes such as means testingwhich could reduce or eliminate benefits for the wealthy, or an increase in the full retirement ageyou may be tempted to start benefits early, under the assumption that its better to have something than nothing. The 2020 annual report from the Social Security Trustees, released in April, projects that the Social Security Trust Fund has enough resources to cover all promised retirement benefits until 2035, and will cover 79% of scheduled benefits for new retirees thereafter without changing the current system. The 2020 report does not include an adjusted projection due to impacts, if any, from the pandemic.

    Over the longer term, changes such as later benefit dates or means testing may be considered.

    In any situation, if youre particularly concerned about the future prospects for Social Security, thats a good reason to save more, and earlier, for your retirement.

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    On iPad, you can use Apple Card to make Apple Pay purchases in apps or on the web. In apps, on the web, or over the phone: Go to Settings > Wallet & Apple Pay, tap Apple Card, then tap Card Number to see the card number, expiration date, and security code. Use this information to make your purchase.

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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

    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 be a mere $225. You can read all about the taxation of Social Security benefits in the Internal Revenue Service Publication 915.

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    Corrected Card For A Noncitizen Child

    If you legally change your child’s name because of adoption, court order or any other reason, you need to tell Social Security. If your child is working, also tell your child’s employer. If you do not tell us when your child’s name changes, it may:

    • Delay your tax refund or your child’s refund and
    • Prevent your child’s wages from being posted correctly to your child’s Social Security record, which may lower the amount of your child’s future Social Security benefits.

    Important

    You must present original documents or copies certified by the agency that issued them. We cannot accept photocopies or notarized copies. All documents must be current . We cannot accept a receipt showing you applied for the document.

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