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Old 01-31-2016, 11:29 AM
Location: Haiku
4,071 posts, read 2,574,551 times
Reputation: 6002


I believe you are talking about file and suspend, which would allow your wife to collect a spousal benefit, but only if you are at full retirement age (65), your wife is at least 62, and you file and suspend your own benefit until you are 70. I have not heard of what was described in the OP. File and suspend is being eliminated May 1, 2016.

This describes file and suspend:
Say Goodbye to the Social Security 'File-and-Suspend' Strategy - US News
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Old 01-31-2016, 11:40 AM
6,880 posts, read 7,281,254 times
Reputation: 9786
Your said "these guys" -- who you said in your OP were, uh, your friends….

1) sometimes people who WORK for Soc Sec don't know what the heck they're talking about -- so you're certainly doing the right thing by trying to confirm what a friend tells you

2) If it's such a great idea...…did THEY take advantage of this little known strategy?

If a person can do what they said that WOULD BE a DEEEEP secret.

Hope you get some more answers. (thumbs up)

Also IF what they said was possible…(and I don't think it is)
-- I'd file at 62…..live off just Sec (and maybe tape savings) from 62 to 65 when I get my pension
-- at 65 get the pension and the Soc Sec
-- at my FRA of 67 STOP the Soc Sec….and live off the pension (and maybe tap savings)
-- then at 70 -- restart Soc Sec at my ORIGINAL delayed to 70 amount -- and have that and the pension.

Of course I'd have to figure if I could live off those lower amounts… (but the age 70 Soc Sec actually wouldn't be lower) and if it was worth all that stop and start figuring

On second thought I think I'll just retire at 65 and delay Soc to my FRA of 67….MUUUUCH easier that way

Good luck to you!

Last edited by selhars; 01-31-2016 at 11:48 AM..
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Old 01-31-2016, 12:11 PM
Location: Baltimore, MD
3,745 posts, read 4,217,509 times
Reputation: 6866
File at 62, draw reduced benefit until FRA. At FRA, suspend benefit and collect an additional 8%/year when you lift the suspension at age 70. The additional 32% is added to the reduced benefit you were receiving preFRA.

So, if your friend was saying that the additional 32% would be about the same amount you would have received had you waited and claimed at FRA - s/he is correct.
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Old 01-31-2016, 01:15 PM
4,481 posts, read 4,743,078 times
Reputation: 9940
Many, many previous threads on just this subject. Please do a search, above, it is quite easy and you will find as lot of info.
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Old 01-31-2016, 06:48 PM
Location: Florida
4,365 posts, read 3,700,708 times
Reputation: 4105
Might want to hire a financial planner to make a recommendation. Not suggesting that you have the planner manage your money just help with the SS decision.

I look at delaying SS as buying an annuity. that pays more at 70 for life. If you can afford to live off your savings until 70 I would do that. Your wife would start collecting at her FRA. Not 62.

I worry about cash flow and inflation. Not getting the last dime out of SS.

The dip in the market should not matter but I assume it does to you. You need to have an emergency fund of several years of your cash needs so you do not have to sell stock when the market is down. The planner should be able to help you with this too.
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Old 02-01-2016, 12:38 AM
6,880 posts, read 7,281,254 times
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I think it's been said more than once that the benefit if you never file until 70 -- IS NOT the absolute same and if you claimed at 62, took benefits until FRA, then suspended from FRA to 70.

According to Lenora and LookingatFL – it is NOT THE same....one said it’s “about the same” another said “you are hurt to a degree by receiving benefits and then suspending them.”

So my question would be what IS the DIFFERENCE in those two amounts? tens of dollars a month -- or HUNDREDS a month… like 25.00 a month or 250.00 a month And how would that be figured?

If the person's age 62 benefit reduction is 25%....
I guess that means that if the person started at 62, then suspends at FRA -- that the person later at 70 would get that AGE 62 reduced benefit….PLUS 8% year over year fronm 67-70 during the 4 year suspension.

Which as Lenora and LookingatFL said would STILL BE LESS than NEVER having claimed until 70.
The question is HOW MUCH less.

Didn't someone once post that:
-- the delay from age 62 to FRA, gains a person 6% a year.
-- the delay from FRA to 70, gains you 8 percent a year.

Is that right?
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Old 02-01-2016, 03:02 AM
71,559 posts, read 71,730,589 times
Reputation: 49156
you gain 6% for every year from 62 to fra and 8% from fra to 70 plus the colas on that difference .

we are doing something like that now .

my wife is 65 and i am 63 . she started collecting a reduced benefit at 62 . she is suspending at fra until 70 .
when she is 70 i will be 67 -10 months so i will file restricted application for 1/2 hers when she starts hers up again at 70 .

at 70 i will file for my own and she gets a 4200.00 dollar spousal adder from my record added to hers ..

fidelity has a new social security optimizer tool that runs through every combo and gives you the choice with the most dollars . it is an in house tool only .

most planners lack the proper tools to really do a thorough job looking at all the different scenario's .

there are quite a few specialized sites that do this for a small fee , like social security solutions.
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Old 02-01-2016, 06:08 AM
Location: RVA
2,165 posts, read 1,266,382 times
Reputation: 4456
Your friends may be adamant, but they are wrong about "no penalty". However, it still may be the better scenario depending on when your wife can file off yours. If you took a 95k hit this month, and draw 5k month without affecting much principal, then you have over $1M invested, and any investment house would be glad to help you make this decision. If you are investing entirely on your own, then this question is a spoof. No one handles that kind of money on their own, and is ignorant of doing their own research. There are NO secret strategies for SS. They are all spelled out.
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Old 02-01-2016, 06:45 AM
71,559 posts, read 71,730,589 times
Reputation: 49156
our goal is really not to maximize dollars by delaying . it is to reduce dependency on markets . i rather be more dependent while waiting the few years until 70 then decades of dependency because of n ss check that is 69% less at 62 .
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Old 02-01-2016, 08:56 AM
11 posts, read 7,776 times
Reputation: 17
No one here has mentioned this yet, but if you have a house you could draw the equity out of your home with a reverse mortgage and avoid needing to start drawing your SS benefits early or withdraw as much from your savings. Your SS benefits will increase at the rates mentioned above until 70 and your savings will continue to accumulate compounded interest. The money you borrow from your estate charges a lower interest rate than the benefit growth rate in your SS and possibly even 401k/IRA savings depending on the market and taxes. Furthermore, the money you borrow from your estate would never need to be payed back (unless you move or die).
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