Category Archives: Social Security

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.

Social Security: It’s not just about getting the biggest monthly check

It’s absolutely important to understand your Social Security benefits but it is also true that understanding those benefits requires some effort on your part.

Planning for Social Security if you are a woman

I get this question a lot—should I wait to take my Social Security at age 70? Although, I get this one almost as often—should I start my Social Security benefits at age 62 so I don’t lose money if I die early/Social Security goes bust/I lose my job? The answer is, “It depends.” It depends…

Social Security changes for 2014

  Social Security beneficiaries will receive a 1.5 percent COLA increase for 2014 beginning with the December 2013 benefits which are payable in January. In 1973, Congress legislated cost of living increases to help benefits keep pace with inflation. COLAs are based on increases in the Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and clerical…

Have you hired the right financial advisor?

An article by Mary Beth Franklin at Investment News asks, “Is age 70 the new 65 for retirement?”  Franklin is asking that question in regards to Social Security benefits because of a research study by the Center for Retirement Research at Boston College.  That study compared the retirement age of 65 in 1940 with retirement…