Ask Larry

Can I Improve My Situation By Giving Myself A Salary?

I am 74 ( born 1947) and have not contributed certain years therefore have gaps, maybe 7 or 8 years where i made no contribution to social security
i am still working part time and can give myself a salary and pay into social security
My understanding is that i still can improve my situation ( i get only $1370 a month ) by filling the years of no contribution.
My accountant doesn't think so, thinks it is a waste to contribute after 70.
What is your understanding?

Hi. Social Security retirement benefits are based on an average of a person's highest 35 years of Social Security covered wage-indexed earnings, regardless of how old the person is when they produce the earnings. So, if you're collecting Social Security retirement benefits and if you had fewer than 35 years of Social Security covered earnings then an additional year(s) of earnings would likely increase your benefit rate somewhat.

However, you can't voluntarily pay Social Security taxes, so I'm not sure what you mean by 'giving yourself a salary'. If you have a corporation and if you are performing services for the corporation then it may be legitimate to pay yourself a salary if it is commensurate with the services performed. Also, whether or not additional earnings would increase your benefit rate by enough to offset the payroll taxes you would be required to pay would depend on a number of factors. You may want to consider using the benefit calculator included in our software ( to do the calculations.

Best, Jerry

Jun 17 2022 - 1:04pm
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