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3 Social security mistakes that could cost you a fortune – The Motley Fool

Social security is likely to be a pretty big source of income for your retirement – at least if you're like most Americans. Although social security benefits millions of seniors, many of the individuals claiming these benefits do not really understand how the program works.

When you become a Social Security recipient, it is important to know a few things about how your benefits are determined so that you can avoid costly mistakes that could lead to diminished income in your golden years [196592002] In particular, there are three Mistakes that you absolutely do not want to do.

  Money and Social Security Card

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. Benefit Before You Understand How It Works

According to a Nationwide survey, 91% of older adults have no idea what factors are affecting the social security benefits they receive after retirement. If you do not know the factors that affect your income, you can make poor decisions about when to receive benefits.

In particular, you should know:

  • How your age affects your retirement. When you retire, your monthly income is permanently reduced. If you retire after FRA, you will be earning late retirement credits, increasing your income for each month you defer until your 70th birthday. Reducing or increasing benefits is permanent, so understand it before deciding the age at which you receive benefits.
  • How Your Work History Affects Your Benefits . Your social security amount is calculated using a formula that takes your highest 35 years of income into account. If you work less than 35 years, you have included years of wages of $ 0 in your calculation, and the benefits will be lower. But if you work longer, you can replace some of the early years in which you earned low wages with a few years later in your career if your income was higher.
  • How does your marital status affect your benefits? If you are married, divorced after you have been married for at least 10 years, or are widowed, you may be eligible for benefits based on your spouse's work card. You should work out a social security claim strategy with your spouse that maximizes the benefits that you both receive.

Once you take advantage, it is difficult or impossible to cancel your claim. If you change your mind within 12 months, you can choose a different claim strategy – but you must pay back all benefits received. If you are not 100% sure that you can maximize your social security income, talk to a financial adviser or research before claiming.

. 2 You can rely on Social Security Administration to decide when you are entitled to benefits

One place you can turn to is Social Security Administration

Unfortunately, you can not rely on the advice of the SSA in deciding one challenging strategy. In fact, a report by the Inspector General revealed that thousands of widows and widows were badly advised by the SSA and therefore missed out on more than $ 141 million in social benefits.

The Inspector General's report also revealed that the Social Security Authority had no controls or protocols to warn employees if an applicant were better off delaying benefits.

Employees of the SSA who provide assistance in applying are not trained financial advisers, they do not know your situation and are not qualified to provide legal or financial advice. Do not assume that the information they give you is enough to make income decisions that will outlast the rest of your life.

. 3 No application for social insurance Disability if you have to retire prematurely due to health problems

Many people who retire early do not do so because they want it, but because health problems make it impossible to keep working. If you are 62 years or older and have a serious health problem, do not make the mistake of claiming pension only if you need social security to assist you.

Instead, consider whether you want to qualify for social security disability. There are some key benefits to this approach:

  • You can earn social security benefits for disability insurance (SSI) up to full retirement age, so you do not reduce your income by taking early retirement benefits early.
  • Your SSDI benefits are equal to your benefits at full retirement age, so you have a higher monthly income than if you retired earlier.
  • You are entitled to a disability stop that allows the Social Security Administration to ignore income inequality if you were disabled to determine your monthly benefit amount.

While it may be difficult to qualify for SSDI performance, the process is easier when you're in your 60s – and it's worth trying, rather than spending a lower income for the rest of your life burden early retirement.

It Is Important To Understand How Social Security Works

While it may seem confusing to the social security system, these benefits have been described by the Stanford experts as an ideal source of retirement income. You can not afford to make mistakes when you use services. So take the time to learn how the program works and maximize the income you need to live after work.

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