Category Archives: Social Security

Will government benefits follow you to Rome?

According to the Social Security Administration, nearly 400,000 retired Americans lived abroad in 2013.  While that’s not a significant portion of the population, it is a growing trend.  As Americans move outside the United States to parts of Asia, Europe, Africa, Central America or elsewhere in order to stretch their retirement benefits, they need to…

Improve your retirement cash flow by planning your Social Security benefits

Would you like to increase your retirement cash flow by tens of thousands of dollars?  A Pew Research Center survey in 2013 found that Social Security is one of the most popular federal programs.  Despite its popularity, few people understand how it works.  One of the most important choices presented by Social Security to beneficiaries…

Social Security changes for 2015

Here’s what Social Security changes to look for in 2015. In October, the Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA) for Social Security was raised 1.7 percent, adding roughly $22 more each month for the average Social Security beneficiary. With that increase the average monthly retirement benefit for all recipients rose to $1,328. Workers taking retirement benefits…

Student debt can take a bite out of your Social Security benefits check

Compounding interest is a magical term when your bank or retirement account benefits.  However, a growing number of older adults are being unexpectedly dinged by forgotten student debt.  According to the New York Federal Reserve Bank, over 16 percent of the $1.2 trillion in outstanding student loan debt is attributed to individuals over 50 years…

Three things you should do about Social Security

Most Americans treat Social Security benefits about the same way they treat paying into Social Security.  That is, they pay almost no attention to it at all.  Many are like a friend of mine who is sure that she won’t live particularly long because she has diabetes.  It’s true that her diabetes is likely to…

What you don’t know about Social Security could hurt you

If you’re thinking that the friendly guy working at the Social Security office is your financial advisor…stop thinking that way.   It’s not that he doesn’t want to help you, it’s that he can’t.  Even as about 10,000 Americans reach retirement age each day, the Social Security office has seen massive cuts to its offices in…

Social Security and your ability to retire

Do you want to feel confident about retiring?  Participate in a retirement plan.  A strong correlation exists between participation in a retirement plan and increased confidence in the ability to retire comfortably according to a report released in March from the Employee Benefit Research Institute (EBRI), a private, nonpartisan, nonprofit research institute that focuses on…

White House considers whether Social Security strategy disproportionately benefits the wealthy

Maximizing Social Security strategies is becoming big business or at least it’s becoming bigger business than it used to be thanks to a number of strategies that became available in 2000.  One of those strategies is called file-and-suspend.  That strategy allows the higher wage earner in a couple to file for benefits to allow the…

SSA will expedite benefits for veteran with 100% Permanent & Total Disability

Under a new program, Social Security disability claims for veterans with a VA disability compensation rating of 100 percent Permanent and Total (P&T) will be expedited according to the Social Security Administration.  To receive the expedited service, veterans must inform the Social Security Administration that they have a 100 percent Permanent and Total disability compensation…

Social Security taxes: Who pays them? Who doesn’t?

  Before 1984, Social Security benefits were exempt from taxation.  Now, because Americans like complicated tax law, things are different.  About one-third of Americans pay income tax on their Social Security benefits.  Here’s when you might or might not.