Do I Get Any Credit For My Earnings Under Social Security If I Just Receive Railroad Retirement?

May 26 2019 - 4:19pm

I retired from the railroad with 41 years of service. I also worked concurrently with non railroad employers under SS. I realize I can't get two separate T1/ss pensions. My question is do I just get the higher of the two (obviously RRR) and do I get "any" credit for the SS wages and If so "where" does it show the difference that SS income made? Thx

Hi,

Yes, at least potentially. Tier 1 Railroad Retirement (RR) benefits are calculated using both Social Security covered earnings and railroad earnings. My expertise is limited to Social Security benefits, not RR benefits, so I can't go into detail on the formula used by the Railroad Retirement Board (RRB) to calculate tier 1 benefits. For more information, refer to RRB's website: https://rrb.gov/Employee_and_Spouse_Annuity_Formula_Components.

Tier 2 RR benefits are based only on a person's railroad work and earnings, and they aren't affected by the receipt of Social Security benefits. Tier 1 benefits, on the other hand, are offset dollar for dollar by the amount of any Social Security benefits that a person is drawing. Therefore, if a person files for both RR and Social Security benefits they will be paid a) the higher of their Social Security benefit or their tier 1 RR benefit, plus b) their tier 2 RR benefit.

Best, Jerry