5 Basics You Need to Know about Social Security

October 31st, 2016 | By | Posted in Uncategorized

Happy elderly couple in Idaho

Everyone looks forward to their golden years,that time in life that allows you to finally relax after decades of hard work. However, this time can be scary for many older people. Without a large retirement fund to support them, retirees may be uneasy about what the future holds. This is why Social Security benefits are so important. This federally funded program provides monthly benefits to those who have worked for at least ten years during their lives. Even if you do have money set aside for retirement, Social Security can still help support you. To further your understanding and prepare you for your future, consider hiring a Social Security attorney in Idaho. You can also read these 5 basic facts you need to know about Social Security.

  • The Social Security Administration uses a method to calculate how much you’ll receive in benefits. In order to qualify to receive Social Security, you have to work for at least 10 years. To determine how much your benefit will be, the government uses a calculation involving the 35 years that you made the most during your career. If you didn’t work for 35 years, zeros will be applied into that calculation. You can get an estimate on what your benefits will be by creating an account on the Social Security website.
  • It pays to wait to start collecting. While you can begin receiving your Social Security benefits at the age of 62, it could be beneficial to wait a few years, if possible. In fact, by waiting until the full retirement atage 65, it could be around 25% higher. The Social Security Administration estimates that each year you delay your benefits, they increase by 8%.
  • Social Security benefits also act as life insurance. When a person passes away prematurely, their family could be eligible to receive their Social Security benefits earlier than the retirement age. This applies to children who are 19 years and younger and spouses who are caring for children under the age of 16. On your Social Security statement, you’ll find a list which states how much your family should receive upon your death.

Smiling woman in Idaho

  • Survivor benefits can save lives. Upon your death, your widow can begin receiving reduced benefits at the age of 60. Once they hit retirement age, they can begin receiving the full benefit amount. For those who are aged, this can be a lifesaver and can provide money to what would otherwise be a destitute spouse.
  • You need to coordinate your benefits with your spouse. If you and your spouse both stand to receive Social Security benefits, it’s in your best interest to coordinate when you decide to start receiving them. The lower-earning spouse might choose to begin benefits at 62, while the higher-earning partner might decide to wait until they are 70, thereby creating a larger chance of a survivor benefit but lessening the sting of an income drop upon retirement.

When it comes to understanding your Social Security benefits, consider hiring a Social Security lawyer. Not only will they help you to make sense of this beneficial program, but they can answer any questions that you might have regarding collecting your check.

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