Ask Larry

How Can I Get My Full Benefits?

I started collecting social security disability benefits in 2010 no 2012 I'm sorry and I called social security to find out why I cannot collect my full benefits I am now 68 years old and well over the age of retirement I want my full benefits

Hi. It sounds like you must already be drawing your full Social Security benefit rate. Social Security disability (SSDI) benefits are calculated at a rate of 100% of the disabled worker's primary insurance amount (PIA). A person's PIA is also equal to their Social Security retirement benefit rate if they start drawing their benefits at full retirement age (FRA).

When a person who's been receiving SSDI benefits reaches their FRA, their SSDI benefits automatically convert to unreduced Social Security retirement benefits at the same benefit rate (i.e. 100% of their PIA). So, if you are now age 68, then even though you are apparently unaware of it your SSDI benefits were converted to your full Social Security retirement benefit rate when you reached your FRA. The conversion wouldn't have changed your benefit rate, though, because you were already eligible for your full PIA when you started collecting SSDI benefits.

You could choose to voluntarily suspend your benefits between now and age 70 in order to earn delayed retirement credits (DRC). That would raise your benefit rate by 2/3rds of 1% for each month that you suspend your benefits, but you couldn't then collect any Social Security benefits during the time that your benefits are suspended. If you'd like to suspend your benefits in order to earn DRCs you can find instructions for doing so on the following Social Security website:

Best, Jerry

Mar 13 2023 - 10:43am
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