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Social Security Basics


Have questions in relation to Social Security? Palacios Law Group has answers! Here are the basics and common questions that have been answered by NOLO.
Who is eligible to collect Social Security?
There are specific requirements if you want to obtain Social Security benefits. These requirements can vary depending on the types of benefits, the age of the person, and depends if the individual is filing as a dependent or survivor.
There is a general requirement that does apply to Social Security programs except for SSI. The worker on whose earnings record the benefit is to be paid must have worked in "covered employment" for a sufficient number of years. The worker must have earned enough work credits by the time he or she claims this retirement benefit, becomes disabled or dies.
If you want to receive Social Security benefits, you must be between the ages of 62 and 70.
How is your Social Security benefit amount calculated?
The calculations are complex. The amount of any benefit is determined by a formula based on the average of your yearly reported earnings since you began working. Social Security also computes your average earnings differently depending on your age. If you have reached the age of 62 or have become disabled before a specific date (check out the source below for more information), SS averages the actual dollar value of your total past earnings. They will base the number of your monthly benefits on this amount. If you turned 62 or became disabled by a specific date (check out the source below for more information) SS divides your earnings into 2 categories. Earnings from before 1951 are credited with their actual dollar amount, up to a maximum of $3,000 per year. From 1951 and on, yearly limits are placed on earnings credits.
Can you still work if you collect from Social Security?
Yes, you can. People who passed the retirement age may work and earn whatever amount of money without losing SS benefits. If you exceed a certain amount of earned income for the year, SS will subtract money from your benefit check.
This limit applies only to earnings from work. It does not apply to income from savings, investments, pensions, rental property, etc.
When can you start collecting Social Security retirement?
Social Security's rules about what is considered full retirement age have changed. Age 65 is still considered full retirement age for anyone born before 1938. But full retirement age gradually increases from age 65 to 67 for people born in 1938 or later.
Check out this information from NOLO!:
Retirement Age for Those Born After 1937
Year Born Full Retirement Age
1938 65 years, 2 months
1939 65 years, 4 months
1940 65 years, 6 months
1941 65 years, 8 months
1942 65 years, 10 months
1943 - 1954 66 years
1955 66 years, 2 months
1957 66 years, 6 months
1958 66 years, 8 months
1959 66 years, 10 months
1960 or later 67 years
Still have questions? Check out the source below for more information.

Source: NOLO

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