Retirement age for maximum Social Security benefits increases again

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While the full Social Security retirement age has increased for some people, the good news is that it will not change. For those born in 1960 or later, the full retirement age reaches its maximum of sixty-seven. Barring unusual moves from Congress, it is likely to be that way for some time.

The 1983 Social Security Amendments provided for the full retirement age to be gradually increased from sixty-five to sixty-seven over a twenty-two-year period beginning in 2000. In 2022, however, the age increased to sixty-seven for years to come. recipients. “In doing so, lawmakers cited improvements in the health of older Americans and increased life expectancies,” writes Fox Business.

Americans can still collect earlier

Eligible Americans can still collect benefits at age sixty-two — the youngest age to do so — but a steep penalty will await them. “A benefit is reduced by 5/9 of one per cent for each month before full retirement age, up to three years. If the number exceeds three years (or 36 months), the benefit is further reduced by 5/12 of one percent each month,” the outlet notes. “For example, if someone elected to collect Social Security at age sixty-two, the benefit would be reduced by 30 percent on a monthly basis,” Fox adds.

The difference in potential monthly benefits between age sixty-two and age seventy can be quite striking. For retirees who must begin collecting Social Security at age sixty-two, the maximum amount will be $2,364. But if one can wait until age seventy to file a claim, one would be entitled to the absolute maximum amount, which currently stands at an impressive $4,194.

“The great thing about Social Security is that you’re allowed to sign up for benefits at different ages. You can file as early as age 62 or delay your filing until age 70. If your full retirement age (FRA) is 67 and you decide to sit back and claim benefits at age 70, you will end up with a monthly salary. that’s 24% more, for life,” says Maurie Backman, personal finance editor of The Motley Fool.

“For every year you delay claiming Social Security after FRA, your benefits will increase by 8%. That means you can get a maximum increase of 24% to 32% by filing at age 70, depending on your specific FRA,” she continues.

Assess life expectancy

There are, however, cases where collecting sooner rather than later will make more sense. “Without a crystal ball, there’s no way to know how long you’ll live, so to some degree delaying Social Security is always a bit of a gamble,” Backman writes. “But if your health is strong in your 60s and you have a family history of longevity, you might want to consider delaying. … On the other hand, if your health is poor, you may want to file a claim with the FRA or even earlier.

Ethen Kim Lieser is a Washington State-based science and technology editor who has held positions at Google, The Korea Herald, Lincoln Journal Star, AsianWeek, and Arirang TV. Follow him or contact him on LinkedIn.

Picture: Reuters.

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