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The most misunderstood part of social security – The Motley Fool



Millions of people rely on social security to get by in retirement. For many of them, getting as much of their social security as possible is part of their financial planning, so it's natural to try to use as many different benefits as possible.

However, many people are confused when it comes to coordinating different benefits. Often what your common sense says is the answer that turns out to be wrong – and if you make plans based on these false assumptions, it may hurt you when you least feel it can afford.

  Social security card embedded in a spread pile of money.

Source: Getty Images.

Various Benefits You Can Receive

Most people consider social security to be paid workers who have retired. and that is by far the most common benefit paid by the federal government. According to the latest statistics available, 44 out of 63 million Americans who are in social security are retired.

However, there are many other types of benefits that you can get from Social Security. These include the following:

  • Benefits for spouse to spouse of workers. About 2.4 million people receive these services.
  • Survivors' benefits for spouses, children and other family members of deceased workers. Nearly 6 million people receive this type of benefits.
  • Disability benefits for workers and their families. More than 10 million people receive benefits either as disabled workers or as spouses or children of disabled workers.

Typical amount of benefits varies according to the type of benefit involved. The average salary of a retired employee is around $ 1,465 per month, while the typical salary for spouses was $ 765 per month. On average, the survivor's pension is nearly $ 1,200 per month, and disability benefits average around $ 1,100 per month.

Why can not you double with Social Security?

The natural assumption that many people make is that they are entitled to two different social security benefits, they can both retain. This is not just wishful thinking; It actually has a certain basis for how the program works.

To understand why double immersion can be theoretically meaningful, consider a couple in which both spouses have worked and are retired. Both can receive social security benefits from their own work records, so they receive two monthly payments from the federal government.

If one spouse dies, the other is entitled to survivor benefits based on the amount The deceased spouse received a retirement pension. Many people mistakenly believe that the surviving spouse should continue to receive two separate social security payments, one for the survivor's pension and one for the survivor's pension from the deceased spouse's work record.

That's not how it works. In almost every situation, it is not allowed to double social security. Instead, you are allowed to receive the amount that is larger than just adding the two together. These include:

  • Simultaneous use of a retirement pension and a survivor's pension.
  • Simultaneous use of retirement and spouse's pensions.
  • Joint use of the invalidity and survivors' pensions

Expect the right use.

Some people think that it is not unfair not to be able to deal with social insurance, as this essentially brings some of the additional benefits of the program meaningless. However, it is important to remember that social security was primarily intended as a social security program, and so it is more important for rules to reach minimum income for as few people as possible, rather than maximizing benefits.

Understanding How to Understand Multiple Social Security Benefits Coordinate can not be intuitive, but it is crucial to determine how much you should expect from the program. Failure to do so could lead you to make unrealistic predictions about what Social Security pays you – which may result in you not saving enough additional retirement savings to make up the difference.


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