OT - Strategies to Max Out Social Security Benefits

OT but bet it's of interest to many in this group.
http://finance.yahoo.com/news/strategies-to-max-out-social-security-benefits.html
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They left out (at least) one strategy.
Bob as reached FRA but wants to delay receiving his benefits. Sue is eligible for a spousal benefit that is larger than her own. Bob employs the "File and Suspend" strategy: Bob applies for his benefit and Sue applies for her spousal benefit. Bob immediately suspends his benefits but Sue is allowed to continue receiving the spousal benefit.
My guess? Long before they start messing with our actual SS benefits (the proverbial political third rail) they'll simply increase the amount of the benefit that is subject to income tax.
The result will be the same (less money in our pockets) but it's politically much safer.
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It's not favorable to retire towards the end of a year. You may get little or no ss. Once you make $15k they start subtracting for any year in wages.
Also I found out I got to tax ss since I made over a certain amount in wage and savings. I took out lump sums.
Also remember it's depends on dates. I had to wait an extra month before collecting ss.
Greg
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On 02/18/12 12:41 PM, gregz wrote:

.....
Not true. There is a first year exception to the wage reduction rules.
The wage reduction rules only apply *after* you begin to receive benefits. All wages earned before applying are ignored.
From: http://www.socialsecurity.gov/pubs/10069.html
==== Special rule for the first year you retire
Sometimes people who retire in mid-year already have earned more than the yearly earnings limit. That is why there is a special rule that applies to earnings for one year, usually the first year of retirement. Under this rule, you can get a full Social Security check for any whole month you are retired, regardless of your yearly earnings.
====

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At no time did they state any first year rule to me. They made it perfectly clear to me.
Greg
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wrote:

Once you reach full retirement age, you can earn as much as you want/can. The deduction applies of you retire before that time.
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On 02/18/12 5:20 PM, Ed Pawlowski wrote:

No, the deduction applies if you are receiving benefits before your FRA and have earnings above the limit. It doesn't matter when you "retire".
When the SSA uses the term "full retirement age" they are really just talking about an "age". It really has nothing to do with whether you've retired or not.
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Huh? That's just what Ed said "Once you reach full retirement age...".

Again, that's what he said. <???>
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No, what I said and what Ed said are 2 very different things.
Ed used the term "retire":
"The deduction applies if you *retire* before that time"
In reality, "retiring" has nothing to do with SS benefits. Its really all age related and not whether you are retired or not. Think of the term "full retirement age" (FRA) used by the SSA as an antiquated term that really is nothing more than an *age*, not an employment status.
It makes no difference whether you are retired or not when it comes to the wage deductions. The deduction is simply based on how old you are, your earned income, and what FRA the SSA has assigned to you based on your DOB.
If you have a job and are earning income, then you are not really "retired" are you? I can have "retired" at 55 but not be eligible to receive benefits or I can still be working at 75 and collect the maximum with no deductions.
So, do you see how the statement "The deduction applies if you *retire* before that time" doesnt really make sense? As I said, the deduction applies if you *start receiving benefits* before that time. Whether you are retired or not makes no difference.
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On Mon, 20 Feb 2012 00:44:39 +0000 (UTC), DerbyDad03

I phrased it wrong and can be misinterpreted. What I meant is exactly what you said. It still does not matter when you retire, but if you have wages before FRA, there will be deductions if you take SS benefits..
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On 2/17/2012 4:49 PM, Red Green wrote:

http://finance.yahoo.com/news/strategies-to-max-out-social-security-benefits.html The math is not that difficult. The problem is predicting the future. Even if you KNOW how long you're gonna live, you don't know what the politicians are gonna do to your benefits, how they're gonna tax 'em, when they're gonna do it and whether it applies to those already receiving benefits or just to those who apply later. And it's gonna be such a sudden "surprise" that you won't be able to do anything about it.
My best investment is the 8% SS benefit increase each year...assuming it's still there when I apply for it...I'm not optimistic. All the math scenarios in the world can't predict that.
Given the current state and politician's inability to do anything at all, somebody's gonna get screwed when it hits the fan.
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