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When to take Social Security Retirement Benefits - Wife early, Husband late

This video discusses when to take Social Security Retirement Benefits for the common case where a husband had higher earnings than the wife.

The strategy discussed here is to have the wife take reduced benefits early, while having the husband delay his receipt of retirement benefits.

The key here is that when the husband passes away first (a common occurrence), the wife will see a step up from her reduced benefits to her spouse's higher benefit level.

This also discusses a "File and suspend" strategy to maximize benefits.

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What is the Maximum Social Security Retirement Check?

The average Social Security check is $1,372 per month, or $16,464 per year.

The highest Social Security check when initiating benefits at "full retirement age" (age 66 if you were born between 1943 and 1954) is $2,788 a month, or $33,456 a year.

The highest Social Security check when initiating benefits at age 70 is $3,680 a month, or $44,162 a year.

Three Questions to Ask Before Claiming Social Security

1. Am I in good health?

If yes, consider deferring benefits.

2. Will my claim affect anyone else?

Higher-earning spouses often benefit by waiting until their full retirement age or later to sign up for Social Security.

3. How reliant will I be on Social Security income?

If you don't have much in savings, and are in good health, consider continuing to work.


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Not affiliated with the US Social Security Administration