Ask Larry

Can I Collect My Social Security And Still Get My Check From The Railroad?

My husband worked for the railroad for over 40 years. He passed away in 2008. I get a check once a month. I have worked for over 50 years that paid into Social Security and I am now retired and wondered if I can collect my Social Security and still get the check from the railroad? Thank you!


I'm sorry for your loss.

As long as you're at least age 62 and you worked long enough to be insured for Social Security benefits, you can claim and collect those benefits. However, what will happen if you do so is that the Railroad Retirement Board (RRB) will offset your Tier 1 Railroad Retirement (RR) benefits dollar for dollar by the amount of your Social Security benefit. Therefore, it would likely only be advantageous for you to claim your Social Security benefits if your Social Security benefit rate would be higher than the amount of your Tier 1 RR benefit.

You should be able to find out how much your Tier 1 RR benefit amount is by contacting an RRB office, and Social Security should be able to tell you how much your Social Security benefit would be if you claimed those benefits. You'll probably need to check with both agencies in order to determine if filing for your Social Security benefits would be advisable.

Best, Jerry

Nov 1 2020 - 9:49am
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