Social Security Application

The Ability to ReCalculate Your Benefit!

By Wendy Fisher, Retirement-Online.com

This page is about your Social Security Application -- your SECOND application to Social Security so that your benefit is recalculated.

There are three ways you can choose to RE-DO the benefit calculation between age 62 and age 70!

  • The Reset *(Changed Dec 2010)
  • The File and Suspend 
  • The Restricted Application

Now let's break all three options down a bit... if you are really interested in any of these, you can visit your local Social Security office for greater detail!

The Reset

UPDATE 2010: One year maximum to withdraw - Do you want to read the press release from Social Security?

This reset allows someone who might regret taking a reduced benefit at age 62 (instead of waiting for the full benefit) - a recalculation to your current age, or even the full Age 70 amount. Sounds great, right?

Not so fast -- what happened is that you have to repay the benefits you've received over the years first... and we all know many folks (especially those who need the extra income) just couldn't come up with this payment.

The File and Suspend

This application is for married retirees, who retire at different ages. This is rather difficult, but here goes:

The primary wage earner can file for benefits, but then request an immediate suspension of that benefit. For example, he is 65 but wants to work a few extra years... but he applies for Social Security, then suspends payment. Then his non-working spouse can start drawing her share of the higher age 65 payment, instead of her lesser age 62 payment, because he started his be benefit (even though he really suspended it). She draws her SS benefit based on his age 65 benefit, he receives no checks until later when he chooses to retire but his payment is still increasing as he works longer.

The Restricted Application

This benefit is for married retirees who both have a good Social Security payment from many years of work history. Using the same scenario as the option above, but this time he continues working but applies for Social Security based on her record -- so that he can receive 50% of her SS benefit, the spouses benefit, while continuing to work and increase his own benefit.

He would file an application for "restricting an application" to her benefits only. When he chooses to retire, he begins to draw his own higher benefit (as he waited for his own benefit until an older age) and that also gives her a higher survivor benefit in the future, if that happens.

More on Social Security benefits here!

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