Today’s column addresses questions on what occurs to advantages misplaced to the income check, submitting for spousal advantages sooner than complete retirement age, to be had advantages with more than one exes and survivor advantages and the income check. Larry Kotlikoff is a Professor of Economics at Boston University and the founder and president of Economic Security Planning, Inc, which markets Maximize My Social Security and MaxiFi Planner.

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Have Social Security questions of your personal you’d like replied? Ask Larry about Social Security right here.


What Happens To The Money Withheld Due To Social Security’s Earnings Test?

Hi Larry, I flip 62 in a couple of weeks. I’m retired and am considering submitting for Social Security. I paintings section time and can make a little extra, say $6,000, than I will make with out it affecting my Social Security advantages. If I make $6,000 greater than the allowed quantity for 2020 and subsequently have a $3,000 lower of Social Security bills, what occurs to that $3,000? I assumed I learn that it will get added again into the calculation at complete retirement age however an SSA rep simply informed me it is going away type of as a penalty for nonetheless operating.

Hi, Social Security is supposed to interchange wages misplaced to, amongst different issues, retirement. If you are making greater than a specific amount, Social Security considers you to not be retired and so now not all advantages that will another way be paid are in reality paid.

If you document in your advantages previous to FRA and your income require withholding of a few or your whole advantages, you would not be paid the ones advantages sooner or later. What would occur is that efficient with the month you succeed in FRA Social Security would take away the relief for age that used to be in the past carried out in your get advantages charge for any months previous to FRA that you just ended up now not being paid because of the income check.

For instance, say you document at age 62 and your get advantages charge is decreased for age by means of 28%. Then shall we say that between age 62 and FRA, 12 months of your advantages ended up being withheld as a result of your income. In that case while you reached FRA the proportion relief on your get advantages charge can be adjusted from 28% to 23%, efficient expanding your per 30 days get advantages charge by means of more or less 5%. Obviously, the volume of the exchange would range relying on what number of months of your advantages had been withheld. So a method to take a look at it’s that should you reside lengthy sufficient, you could ultimately recoup the advantages misplaced because of the income within the type of the rise on your per 30 days get advantages charge.

You would possibly need to strongly imagine the usage of my corporate’s instrument — Maximize My Social Security or MaxiFi Planner — to completely analyze your choices with the intention to resolve your perfect submitting technique for Social Security advantages. Social Security calculators equipped by means of different corporations or non-profits would possibly supply right kind ideas in the event that they had been constructed with excessive care. Best, Larry


If I File For Spousal Benefits Before FRA Can I Receive 50% Of My Husband’s Amount?

Hi Larry, I’ve completed a little research however am nonetheless at a loss for words about beginning my Social Security advantages. I plan on submitting spousal advantages. My husband will document at FRA, however I’m 9 months more youthful than he’s. When he recordsdata, can I document for spousal advantages and obtain 50% of his at his time of submitting? Thanks, Michelle

Hi Michelle, If your husband begins drawing his retirement advantages at complete retirement age (FRA), he’s going to be paid 100% of his number one insurance coverage quantity (PIA). If you document for spousal advantages 9 months sooner than you succeed in FRA, and assuming that you just are not eligible for advantages based totally by yourself income, your spousal get advantages charge would quantity to six.25% lower than 50% of your husband’s PIA. In order to get a complete 50% of your husband’s PIA, and once more assuming that you just are not eligible for advantages by yourself account, you would want to wait till your FRA to start out drawing spousal advantages. Best, Larry


Can I Get Both Of My Exes’ Benefits At 62 And Then Apply For My Benefits At Full Retirement Age?

Hi Larry, I’m these days 60 and I’m two times divorced from marriages that each lasted greater than 10 years. When I flip 62, can I am getting either one of my exes’ advantages blended after which declare mine which is upper than either one of theirs once I succeed in my complete retirement age? Thanks, Kelly

Hi Kelly, You cannot be paid a couple of complete Social Security get advantages on the similar time. If you document for a couple of get advantages, you’ll be able to best be paid necessarily the upper of the ease charges. Furthermore, assuming that either one of your exes are nonetheless residing, you could not document for divorced spousal advantages with out additionally being deemed to be submitting in your personal retirement advantages on the similar time. And should you document for advantages previous to complete retirement age (FRA), your get advantages charge will likely be decreased for age. Best, Larry


Can I Collect Any Benefits From My Deceased Wife’s Record If I’m Still Working?

HI Larry, My spouse kicked the bucket in 2016. I will be able to be 63 in November and I’m nonetheless operating. Can I accumulate survivor advantages from her document after which get started amassing my retirement advantages at 66 and six months? Thanks, Ben

Hi Ben, I’m sorry in your loss.

The solution in your query is determined by your doable get advantages charge, and what sort of you earn. If you document for widower advantages previous to complete retirement age (FRA), your advantages may well be topic to complete or partial withholding in keeping with Social Security’s income check. If you document for advantages previous to the yr by which you succeed in FRA, $1 of your advantages can be withheld for every $2 that you just earn in far more than the income check exempt quantity. In 2020, the income check exempt quantity is $18,240.

Your perfect submitting technique is may well be both submitting for decreased widower’s advantages early after which switching in your personal document at 70, or submitting for decreased retirement advantages by yourself document early after which submitting for unreduced widower’s advantages at complete retirement age (FRA).

Normally, you can need to get started out drawing the decrease get advantages first after which transfer to the upper document when it reaches its best possible doable charge. My corporate’s instrument — xxxx — may type all of this out for you and will let you resolve your optimum submitting technique. Best, Larry