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Do Social Security Spousal Benefit COLAs Prevent Later Retirement Benefit COLAs?

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At this time’s column addresses questions on value of dwelling will increase for spousal advantages’ results on later COLAs for retirement advantages, taking retirement advantages earlier than survivor’s advantages and Social Safety choices with no saving and well being considerations. Larry Kotlikoff is a Professor of Economics at Boston College and the founder and president of Financial Safety Planning, Inc.

See extra Ask Larry solutions right here.

Have Social Safety questions of your individual you’d like answered? Ask Larry about Social Security here.


Do Social Safety Spousal Profit COLAs Forestall Later Retirement Profit COLAs?

Hello Larry, At my full retirement age in 2017, I filed a restricted utility for spousal advantages and my spousal profit was set at 50% of my husband’s retirement profit for 4 years.

I will likely be 70 quickly and I used to be knowledgeable by Social Safety that my new profit calculation outcomes embody the 4 years of delayed retirement credit. Nevertheless, I decided this calculation didn’t embody any COLAs for these 4 years.

Is it attainable Social Safety shouldn’t be together with these 4 years of COLAs since I used to be receiving my spousal profit which included 50% of the COLA utilized to his retirement profit? Is Social Safety deeming that I already acquired my COLA through my husband’s profit for these 4 years? Thanks, Liz

Hello Liz, An individual’s major insurance coverage quantity (PIA) is mechanically elevated to incorporate all value of dwelling (COLA) will increase that happen after they attain age 62, no matter whether or not or not they’re drawing advantages. An individual’s PIA is the same as their Social Safety retirement profit price if they begin drawing their advantages at full retirement age (FRA).

Any delayed retirement credit (DRC) earned for ready previous full retirement age (FRA) to begin drawing advantages are added to the PIA adjusted for COLAs. Finest, Larry


When Can I Get My Personal Advantages And Would I Nonetheless Get My Deceased Husband’s Advantages?

Hello Larry, Once I turned 60, my husband handed away in 2016 and Social Safety advised me I needed to wait till I turned 60 to get my widow’s profit. When then can I get my very own retirement profit and would I nonetheless get my widow’s profit on the identical time? Thanks, Carol

Hello Carol, I am sorry to your loss. Assuming that you just aren’t disabled, the earliest that you could possibly qualify for widow’s advantages is at 60, and the earliest that you could possibly qualify to your personal advantages is at 62. You possibly can’t draw a couple of full profit concurrently, although, so in the event you apply for each your individual retirement advantages and for widow’s advantages, you may solely be paid the upper of the two profit charges.

Your greatest submitting technique may very well be both submitting for diminished widow’s advantages early after which switching to your individual file at 70, or submitting for diminished retirement advantages by yourself file early after which submitting for unreduced widow’s advantages at full retirement age (FRA). Usually, you’ll need to begin out drawing the decrease profit first after which change to the upper file when it reaches its highest potential price. Finest, Larry


What Are Your Suggestions?

Hello Larry, I’m 62 and have some well being points. I’ve all the time been in secretarial jobs that all the time paid low wage. Ought to I file for my Social Safety retirement profit now? My retirement profit can be round $1,100 however will probably be very tough financially with that per thirty days.

I sadly don’t have any financial savings and no 401k so it seems to be like I might need to proceed working. I’ve been caring for my mother full time for the final seven years and he or she only in the near past died of most cancers. Now I’m in search of work. What are your suggestions? Thanks, Hannah

Hello Hannah, You do not point out any marital historical past, so my reply assumes that you have no choices apart from amassing Social Safety primarily based by yourself earnings historical past.

In case your well being points may be extreme sufficient to be thought of as disabling, your only option would probably be to use for Social Safety incapacity (SSDI) advantages. SSDI advantages are paid at a price equal to 100% of an individual’s major insurance coverage quantity (PIA), which is similar as the quantity that they’d obtain in the event that they filed for his or her Social Safety retirement advantages at full retirement age (FRA). In different phrases, in the event you qualify for SSDI, you could possibly draw your full unreduced Social Safety retirement profit early.

If you cannot qualify for SSDI, you’d in all probability be higher off to attend so long as attainable to begin drawing your advantages, however you would not need to wait previous 70 to begin amassing. Social Safety retirement advantages proceed to develop up till an individual turns 70 in the event that they wait till then to begin drawing, however they do not get any larger in the event you wait past 70 to begin drawing. The sooner that you just begin drawing previous to 70, the decrease the month-to-month profit price that you’re going to be caught with for the remainder of your life.

You might need to think about using my firm’s software program — xxxx — to totally analyze the choices accessible to you with a view to decide your greatest technique for maximizing your advantages.


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