Would you be able to provide me with some guidance on my wife’s and mine Social Security planning? My age is 69 and 2 months, and my wife’s age is 66 and 2 months, therefore we have both reached full retirement age.
We both want to begin taking Supplemental Security Income (SSI) the following month. My monthly benefit would be around $3,300, and my wife’s monthly benefit would be approximately $1,900 each month.
I’m perplexed by the concept of spousal benefits. Should I begin collecting Social Security now so that my wife might receive a spousal benefit from my earnings?
Is it even possible to do that? Is it preferable for each of us to have our own set of keys? Signed: Uncertain
Greetings, Uncertain: Your wife will not be entitled to a spousal benefit, based on the information you’ve provided because her own benefit at her full retirement age (FRA) is greater than half of your FRA benefit amount.
If your age 69 benefit is approximately $3300, then your FRA (age 66) benefit was approximately $2660 in value.
Due to the fact that half of your FRA amount ($1330) is less than half of your wife’s FRA amount ($1900), your wife will not be eligible for a spousal benefit.
When considering when to file for Social Security benefits in your personal situation, both you and your wife should take your individual ambitions into consideration.
In the event that you file for retirement next month at the age of 69, you will get a benefit that has grown by approximately 26 percent as a result of the Delayed Retirement Credits (DRCs) that you have accrued since reaching your FRA of 66.
Your wife will receive the full Social Security retirement benefit she has earned during a lifetime of hard work if she files a claim at her FRA.
Despite the fact that your current method is sound, the fact that you were born before 1954 and have not yet filed gives you an additional choice.
Unless your wife files for her Social Security benefits first, you will be able to file a “Restricted Application for Spousal Benefits Only” if she does.
While you are collecting a spouse benefit from your wife (half of her FRA benefit amount),
you might use the restricted application to let your personal benefit increase for another 9 months, with the possibility of receiving the whole amount when you reach age 70.
If it is financially viable and your longevity suggests it, you and your wife might consider waiting even longer to receive a higher benefit, but this is a personal decision that you and your wife must make for yourselves.
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Claiming now at the age of 69 will reduce your payment by around 6% compared to your maximum payment at the age of 70.
In addition, because your wife is not eligible for a spouse benefit but has attained her FRA, she may want to consider delaying a little longer if her financial needs and expected longevity indicate that doing so is a good idea.
She, like you, has the option of delaying her claim until she is 70, at which point her payout would reach its maximum (about 30 percent more than it is now).
if you want to acquire a personal estimate of your life expectancy. The reason that life expectancy is essential is that if you live at least to “average” life expectancy,
you would be able to receive more cumulative lifetime benefits by delaying retirement and maximizing your Social Security payment.
According to Social Security, the “average” life expectancy for a male in excellent health in his 60s is approximately 84 years, and for a woman in good health in her 60s is approximately 87 years.
However, utilizing the tool above to predict your personal lifespan should help you make a more informed decision about whether or not to file a claim.