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Old 11-03-2016, 07:02 PM
4,720 posts, read 10,327,707 times
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Few questions since we're on this topic. 1) does the spouse 1/2 stop at FRA or will it still be half when delayed till 70? 2) is there a limit on what a husband and wife can collect? Or it's simply based on what each persons lifetimes earnings?
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Old 11-04-2016, 02:33 AM
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delayed credits from fra to 70 have no effect on spousal benefits , only survivor benefits . all spousal is based on full retirement age only . the max for a couple is about 80k or so . remember incomes after a certain point do not count since you no longer pay ss taxes .

if a spouse has no work history at all they get a max of 1/2 their souse's full retirement benefit if they themselves are full retirement age or they get a deduction .

if a spouse has any work history at all they only get their own benefit regardless of age . but if 1/2 the spouses full is more than their own full they get that difference added to their own benefit . if you file early then if 1/2 your spouses full is more than what your full would have been if you ewaited that difference is added to your early benefit . so if you takes ss you will always get less than 1/2 the spouses full .
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Old 11-05-2016, 05:11 PM
Location: Ashland, Oregon
255 posts, read 133,152 times
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Okay. I know I've been poking around on here and getting answers to a lot of questions already BUT here's the real, final deal:

I will be 62 next month, eligible to file for my own SS. If I do that, can I file for a spousal benefit at my FRA of 66, which will be more than my own? (I understand that the amount will be added to mine to make up the difference). My concern is that once I start collecting my own at age 62, there is no allowable 'top-up' once I turn 66 via the spousal benefit.

THEN, can I file a survivor's benefit after that, if my DH should pass away, and receive his full amount? I understand that I give up my own benefit plus spousal once I do that, if I am allowed.

Am I understanding all this correctly?

Nervous, because I have to make a decision soon. My understanding is that SS is not retroactive so if I don't file for my own at age 62 and decide to do it later, say at age 63, there is no catch-up, lump-sum payment for that year of missed payments.
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Old 11-05-2016, 05:29 PM
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All you ever get is your own . If you take it early and half your spouses full is more than your full you get the difference added to your early benefit. If your spouse filed you can get the adder as soon as you file . It has nothing to do with your fra.

As long as you take survivor at your fra you get what your spouse got . Your check stops once you take survivor
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Old 11-05-2016, 05:35 PM
Location: Coastal Georgia
37,152 posts, read 45,694,157 times
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Huge difference. I'm two years older than my husband and I lost my job at 64, otherwise I would have deferred. He also lost his last full time job before he was ready to retire so we are a cluster of bad luck in that department. Anyway, my benefit is less than half of his.
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Old 11-05-2016, 07:05 PM
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I passed a big milestone recently. My own estimated benefit at FRA has become more than one-half of my ex-spouse's estimated benefit at FRA.

I'm happy with this trend. My own estimated benefit will keep rising as each year of current earnings wipes out one past year of zero earnings.

On the other hand, if I happen to outlive my ex-spouse, then I won't have to worry about claiming benefits on just my own record anymore. SS will give me the equivalent of whatever he was getting, which is the maximum.
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