My wife and I have been married almost 40 years, she is two years younger than I, her birth year is 1960 and mine is 1958. We have both worked but my benefit is larger than hers. Our thoughts are this, she plans to retire at age 63, I will have a small pension that kicks in at my age 65. I want to wait until my age 70 before I claim my benefit, to maximize my monthly amount but also this will provide her a higher monthly amount if I pass first.
First question; can she take her benefit at age 63 and I wait till 70 with no problems?
Second question; Will we receive seperate checks for as long as we both live on?
Third question; Is there a strategy we should be looking at to receive our best option?
Fourth question; Is there a maximum benefit amount that we can qualify for per month?
Fifth and last is there an advantage to be divorced or married in this situation for social security?
Thanks in advance for your insight.
I'll answer your questions in order:
1) Yes. The only 'problem' with your wife drawing early is that her benefit rate will be reduced for as long as both of you are living.
3) Your best strategy depends on a number of factors, so you may want to consider running the maximization software on this website in order to explore all of your options.
4) There is a family maximum benefit that can be paid on any individual account, but that won't be a factor in your situation.
5) Probably not. In some cases, a divorced spouse can receive benefits before the worker starts drawing their benefits, but that would only matter in your case if your wife could qualify for spousal benefits.