Anticipating relocating as a retired teacher, wondering about Social Security

by Mrs. Tired
(Bartlett, Illinois)

Since 1970 through 1994, I worked in regular jobs and paid into social security. The last 20 years, I have worked as a teacher, where no social security taxes were taken. Therefore, I am told that I am not eligible to collect social security and will have to depend on my teacher's pension.

If I moved to Florida, would I be able to fully collect on both my pension and social security?

Wendy Social Security is a Federal benefit, so moving to a different state makes no difference.

However, You might inquire on how many SS credits you have earned - to see how many you are lacking.
I can't believe you aren't eligible for a benefit as you worked many years outside teaching.

Social Security Eligibility is: "The number of work credits you need to get retirement benefits depends on your date of birth. If you were born in 1929 or later, you need 40 credits (10 years of work). People born before 1929 need fewer than 40 credits (39 credits if born in 1928; 38 credits if born in 1927; etc.)"

I don't know your age, but assuming you are born after 1929, you need 40 credits (10 years working x 4 credits per year). Did you have kids during those years and not work full years?

Here is the SS brochure that explains work credits.

Finally, at the worst, maybe you earned 36 credits... move to Florida and work to keep busy, while you earn the 4 more credits you need.

To earn additional credit (in 2013), you must earn $1,160 in covered earnings to get one Social Security or Medicare work credit and $4,640 to get the maximum four credits for the year.

That means the 4 credits you might need will only take one year of earnings at minimum wage, depending on hours worked, of course, Maybe you need 2-3 years of part-time work, find a fun job, get yourself out of the home a bit, and enjoy finding new friends as you work and become eligible for your benefit.

Finally, Be sure to VISIT your Social Security Office.. call the toll-free 1-800-772-1213 number and ask for an appointment. When you visit, they are ready for you, and have your records available for questions. Let that person check to see how many credits you need... they may even be able to estimate your monthly benefit if you earn more credit.

Best Wishes~

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Illinois retired teacher & social security
by: Anonymous

I am going to retire soon, so I called up social security office (I worked from 1974 through 1994) and was pleasantly surprised at how much money I will be awarded in addition to TRS (Teachers Retirement System) - over 700.00!

Do yourself a favor and call - there are other variables they consider in addition to credits earned.

Fellow Illinoisian with 20 years of TRF
by: Anonymous

You are in the same position as I am in. I was told that it is to our benefit to collect TRF, as the amount is larger. But we will actually qualify for a reduced amount of social security - in my case, it is less than $250 per month.

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