Results for "social security"

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Special Social Security rules for public sector employees

June 12, 2019

Questions from readers about Social Security rules and strategies seem to come in waves. The latest tsunami involves Social Security rules for public employees, their spouses and survivors — a total of about 2.5 million people. Although participation...

Retirement is forced upon roughly a quarter of Americans

June 3, 2019

Most Americans aren't financially prepared for retirement. About 44% of Americans said their retirement savings are not on track, versus 36% who said they are on track, according to the Federal Reserve Board's sixth annual survey of household...

Future retirees often overestimate Social Security benefits

May 8, 2019

Chalk it up to wishful thinking, or merely misinformation, but many future retirees overestimate how much they are likely to receive from Social Security, according to an annual survey released Wednesday by the Nationwide Retirement Institute....

Hints about Social Security COLA and Medicare premiums in 2020

May 6, 2019

Buried in the recent Social Security and Medicare Trustees' Report were some hints about next year's projected cost-of-living adjustments for Social Security benefits and likely increases in Medicare premiums for 2020. The fact that the Medicare...

Widows, widowers and Social Security

May 1, 2019

I've seen an uptick in questions from financial advisers about their widowed clients and what happens to their Social Security survivor benefits if they remarry. The good news is that surviving spouses have more claiming options than other types...

Criticism of Richard Thaler proposal must not prevent discussion

April 27, 2019

The idea recently put forward by Nobel laureate Richard Thaler to allow Americans to contribute a portion of their 401(k) balances to the Social Security Administration in return for a higher income stream has been criticized from some in the...

Older Americans are twice as likely to work now as in 1985

April 22, 2019

Just as single-income families began to vanish in the last century, many of America's elderly are now forgoing retirement for the same reason: They don't have enough money. Rickety social safety nets, inadequate retirement savings plans and...

The drawback of Richard Thaler's 401(k)-Social Security idea? Social Security itself

April 22, 2019

Nobel laureate Richard Thaler's idea to increase retirees' Social Security payments by using a portion of their 401(k) accounts is drawing criticism from some corners of the financial-advice industry, primarily due to the current less-than-stellar...

Social Security funding outlook improves slightly

April 22, 2019

The long-term funding outlook for Social Security's retirement and survivor benefit programs has improved slightly, while the timing of the depletion of the disability program's reserves was extended by 20 years, according to the 2019 trustees'...

Richard Thaler wants to use 401(k)s to boost Social Security payments

April 18, 2019

Nobel laureate Richard Thaler wants to mesh 401(k) plans with Social Security benefits to help Americans simplify what is perhaps their most daunting and complex financial issue: drawing down retirement assets. Mr. Thaler, who won the Nobel...

Update on Social Security reform

March 26, 2019

Well, it's a start. A House panel held hearings in mid-March on a bill that would expand Social Security benefits and stabilize the long-term finances of the nation's premier retirement system. But don't get too excited. The Social Security...

Choosing between a retroactive lump sum and a bigger monthly Social Security benefit

March 19, 2019

Jim Perry, a financial adviser with Edward Jones in Coral Gables, Fla., was surprised to learn that retirees who claim Social Security benefits after their full retirement age are eligible for up to six months of retroactive benefits paid in...

Future retirees ponder Social Security strategies

March 6, 2019

I often get questions from people who were born in 1960 or later about whether it would make sense for them to delay claiming Social Security benefits beyond their full retirement age of 67. My usual answer is I don't know. Much of that decision...

2019 is a key year for Social Security

February 20, 2019

I'd like to try to clear up some confusion about Social Security claiming strategies that was triggered by one of my recent columns.​ In last week's column, I wrote that people who reach their full retirement age of 66 in 2019 are the last...

Rules for claiming Social Security at 70

February 11, 2019

By now, most financial advisers and many consumers realize that delaying Social Security benefits until age 70 can pay off big time. For every year individuals postpone claiming benefits beyond their full retirement age, they earn an extra 8%...

Don't wait too long to claim Social Security

February 4, 2019

If delaying Social Security benefits for a few years results in a bigger check, then delaying a little longer should result in an even bigger one, right? Wrong! This is one of the false assumptions I encountered last week during my annual trip...

Social Security and gray divorce

January 2, 2019

Over the holidays, a financial adviser contacted me with questions about how to help one of his newly divorced clients, a classic example of the growing trend of gray divorce, which occurs when a long-time marriage dissolves in or near retirement....

Calculating Social Security survivor amounts

December 19, 2018

Some of my favorite column ideas come from readers' questions. This is one of them. A financial adviser wrote to me recently regarding a client who wants to wait until age 70 to claim his Social Security retirement benefit to ensure that his...

Couples should coordinate Social Security, Medicare decisions

December 12, 2018

Young couples who marry, and even older couples tying the knot for the second time, may be prepared to utter the traditional wedding vow of 'til death do us part. But how many of them realize that their entwined lives will dictate key retirement...

Countdown to Medicare and Social Security checklist

November 24, 2018

Age 62 Earliest age to apply for reduced Social Security retirement benefits, subject to earnings restrictions if working. Age 64 Research Medicare options. Age 65 Enroll in Medicare. Those who claim Social Security benefits early are automatically...

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