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Social Security – Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What If I Take Social Security at 62?

You can take Social Security as early as age 62, but you must have  a plan to pay for your health insurance since Medicare won’t start until age 65. If you are on your spouse’s employer health plan and can stay on it till 65, grabbing your Social Security at 62 might be a smart option.

If I take Social Security before my full retirement age, how much can I work?

The amount changes each year, so do a Google search to be up to date. in 2022 it will be around $20k that you can earn in wages. If you earn over than amount it’s ok, but your Social Security will be reduced. For every $2 over the limit, your Social Security will be reduced by $1. Working and earning $30k means that you went about $10k over and you’ll be reduced by half of that, or $5k. That $5k isn’t lost! After your full retirement age (between age 66 – 67) you’ll start getting that $5k back. No, not in a lump sum, but in a little bit extra each month for the rest of your life.

I was married for 10 years and divorced. I'm 62, can I draw Social Security off my ex even though he has remarried?

Yes, as long as he is at least 62 years old too. He doesn’t have to be drawing benefits and no, he can’t prevent you from drawing off of his work record. To start, just call your local Social Security office and provide your divorce decree and marriage license. The fact that he has remarried doesn’t impact you. You cannot be remarried before the age of 60 or you won’t be able to draw off of him. 

I really like my ex spouse and my kids would be mad if I drew Social Security off him and hurt his new wife.

Drawing benefits off another never reduced their own benefits! You will not hurt your ex or his new spouse! 

He probably won’t even know that you file to draw off of him unless he calls SSA to check. You don’t need his permission and if you don’t tell him or the kids, they won’t know.

How can I plan for retirement? Is there a way to find out how much I'll get from Social Security?

Everyone can go to ssa.gov and set up a free account to get an estimate of your retirement benefits. They are estimating how much you will earn from now till your full retirement age, so the number could be higher or lower. The average American gets about $1,500 per month, so that’s a good place to start.