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Social Security – Care and Beware

By: Glenn Mollette
July 26, 2019

Americans should be able to draw 100 PERCENT of their social security benefits at age 65 but they can’t. 

1983 began a gradual age increase from 65 to 67 which occurred over a 22-year period. For those who are already past 65 it’s too late to care much. People who began collecting at age 62 don’t care either. 

If you started paying into Social Security by the age of 25 and most Americans did or will, then forty years is long enough to pay into a fund that should give you the maximum payout based on what you paid into the fund. Many American workers began paying into a retirement account younger than 25 and then were able to draw 100 percent of their retirement after 27 or 28 years of work. This means some people, like school teachers, government workers and others might retire as young as 50. Fifty is significantly earlier than 66 or 67 to begin collecting your full Social Security benefits. 

Many Americans will pay into Social Security and never collect a penny although there may be family benefits. 

Americans can begin collecting Social Security at age 62 at a reduced benefit. The problem this creates for many Americans is they are limited to additional income. Why should the “62” crowd of Americans only be able to make $17,640 a year? If they are paying into Social Security from what they are earning from a job, then they are only supplementing a system they are collecting from. Many Americans are forced into double trouble. They have reduced benefits at age 62 because they want to go ahead and collect the income. Next, they are only allowed to make up to $17,640 additional money from working a job. They end up with a smaller amount of Social Security for life and could become totally unable to work a job thus creating a lifetime dilemma. 

The average senior will collect $17,532 in Social Security benefits a year or $1,461 per month with the 2.8 percent 2019 cost of living increase. Some Americans are collecting $2,788 per month or $33,456 a year if they paid in the maximum taxable earnings for 35 years. The maximum amount is now $132,900! How many Americans will make the maximum amount of earnings for 35 years? Each year about 6 of covered workers have earnings above the taxable maximum income. 

Sadly, once America gives up something, we seldom get it back. For example, full Social Security at age 65. Our government is starved for cash. Our government has borrowed about $3 trillion from our Social Security fund. Our government “borrows” from the Social Security fund ad nauseam to cover their wasteful spending. If the government can get its way it will increase the Social Security age to 70 or higher. So, beware!

Start talking to your Representative or Senator about your Social Security benefits. If you are under 65 you need to care now.