Social Security enrollment decisions

At What Age Should I Begin Social Security Benefits?

Because Social Security planning should be based on the unique needs of the client by a comprehensive financial planner and/or a specialized attorney this report is general in nature.

Top Concerns on Social Security:

  • will it still be around
  • what age to file
  • avoiding tax exposure

Is Social Security Going Away?

Social Security is an entitlement program, meaning it is backed by the claims paying ability of the Federal Government. It is not guaranteed by law, and this creates great concern among those nearing retirement. But in my opinion, Social Security isn’t going anywhere anytime soon because members of Congress know failing to support Social Security is committing political suicide.

When Should I File?

According to the Social Security Administration, benefits can increase by 30% from age 62 until age 70, although this is not guaranteed. So the predominant question is when should you file? Unfortunately, there is no easy answer to the question of when to file. But if you have financial resources to subsidize your income and can wait until age 70, you may benefit not only from receiving a larger monthly payment but also sidestep some tax consequences.

What are the Tax Consequences?

The predominant mistake made by many is their decision of what age to file for Social Security because there could be tax exposure for filing prior to normal retirement age. Generally, 66 is considered normal retirement age. However, you can file as early as age 62 or postpone Social Security benefits until 70. Whether you file at age 62 or postpone depends on your specific needs.

There is a concern about Social Security benefits among those who are retiring and those who are nearing the age to file for Social Security benefits. Understanding who should file and when can be complex and many people are misinformed. There is much to consider with respect to the individual needs of the recipient, such as health, marital status, retirement accounts and cash investments. These and other factors must be taken into account for each individual.

There are enough Social Security filing strategies to fill 20 pages, but for the purpose of keeping this brief, it is impossible to discuss all of them. Just remember that every case is different and any discussion about Social Security filing strategies should be with an understanding of your unique financial fingerprint.

In closing, let me encourage you to conduct proper due diligence about Social Security planning strategies with the help of a comprehensive financial planner. Working with a CFP® may be a great place to start. A thorough interview, also known as the discovery process, is where Social Security planning should begin.

I enjoy discovering the financial situation and life circumstances of every client I encounter because it helps me make the best recommendations for that person. Solid questions, answers and proper planning based upon my discovery interview with you are where it all begins.

Phone calls and personal inquiries are always welcome, so please feel free to initiate a conversation with me or your financial planner.

This information is not intended to give specific recommendations, investment, legal or tax advice. Advisory services offered through Nepsis Advisor Services, Inc.; an SEC Registered Investment Advisor.
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Rick Torrington

Rick Torrington, CFP® has been offering sound comprehensive financial, retirement, asset protection and wealth management advice to his clients in Sarasota and most of Florida for close to 20 years. He is diligent in his efforts to provide clarity and financial knowledge to the public through his articles and ebooks.