Wednesday, June 26, 2013
We've often heard the advice to delay, delay, delay when it comes to claiming Social Security benefits.
By waiting to claim your benefit until after the retirement age of 66, you can earn delayed retirement credits of eight percent a year until you reach the age of 70.
But many people choose to take those benefits sooner. Rachel Sheedy from Kiplinger.com reports there are moves you can make to boost your benefits when you've taken your benefits early.
1. Withdraw and repay.
Within 12 months of first claiming benefits, you can file a form SSA-521 which is a request to withdrawal of application. You will have to repay all the benefits you received including any spousal benefits. You can then restart benefits in the years ahead. But remember: you have a one-year window and you can only apply one time.
2. Replace a zero.
Your Social Security benefit is based on the highest 35 years in your work history - including any years of earnings you rack up while taking benefits. So if you take your benefit early but continue to work, your benefit will continue to climb.
So if there is a year to two when you were out of work, a couple of years of working while claiming Social Security can replace the years of unemployment in your work history
3. Suspend your benefit.
If you or your working spouse took benefits early, you can chose to suspend your benefit once you hit full retirement age. You'll earn delayed retirement credits of eight percent a year until age 70.
There are other ways you can repair the damage of taking retirement benefits early. For the full list of the moves Rachel Sheedy recommends, click on the link to her complete article.