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Do My Railroad Credits Get Rolled Into Social Security?

Hi Larry, I’m 60 right now, and I’ve been thinking about taking SS at 63, my Full retirement age is 67. Now for the question, I worked for the rail road for 13 years and was vested, does that somehow get rolled into SS when it’s time to apply? Or do I need to file for railroad retirement separately?

Hi. If you had more than 10 years of railroad earnings, then you'll need to file separately for Railroad Retirement (RR) benefits. Social Security only uses RR earnings to calculate a person's Social Security retirement benefit rate if they don't have enough credits to qualify for a RR pension.

If you're drawing Social Security benefits and then apply for an RR pension, the Railroad Retirement Board (RRB) will offset your Tier 1 RR benefits dollar for dollar by the amount of your Social Security benefit. Your best filing strategy depends largely on your relative RR and Social Security benefit rates. Our software ( can help you compute your Social Security benefit rate and analyze your various options with regard to Social Security benefits, but you'll need to contact the RRB regarding your RR pension options.

Best, Jerry

Jul 12 2022 - 11:53am
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