Ask Larry

How Do I Get Social Security To Pay Me My Full Benefit?

I worked with the local SS people for months to determine my benefit. I went over my 100% benefit to increase my monthly amount. I decided to pull the trigger in June 2021. I was told am amount by the local people. Then I received my first check in July. The check amount was low by $88. I figured I did not receive the amount covering the extra months for year 2021. I filed an appeal. The local person answer my appeal on the phone and said I was correct and that everything would be set correct after the turn of 2022. I have asked for a new calculation to be done. Their answer is they have been giving me the correct amount. Filing appeals and speaking with the local office is getting me no where. How do I get them to stop jerking me around and pay my full benefit? With the cola of 2022 they are stealing more than $90 a month.

Hi. There's probably nothing that can be done right now. Based on the limited information in your question, I'm guessing that the reason your benefit rate is lower than you were is expecting is likely due to the fact that you haven't yet been credited with the delayed retirement credits (DRC) you accrued in the first 5 months of 2021. Those DRCs can't be used to increase your benefit rate until your payment for January 2022.

When someone starts drawing benefits their between full retirement age (FRA) and age 70, Social Security law states that they can initially only receive credit for any delayed retirement credits (DRC) that they earned through December of the year prior to the year they start collecting benefits ( Any DRCs earned in the year that they start drawing benefits are subsequently credited effective with their payment for January of the year after the year they claimed benefits.

However, recomputations to credit partial year DRCs are done on an automated schedule, and there is no way speed up that process to the best of my knowledge. My understanding is that such automated recomputations are only done every other year, so you may not actually see your rate increase until the latter part of 2023. You should, though, be paid any back pay due starting with your payment for January 2022 when the recomputation is processed.

By the way, we recently received feedback from someone who filed for his benefits at age 68 in September 2019, and he reports that his recomputation to credit his 2019 DRCs wasn't processed until August 2021. He was also then paid the back pay that he was due retroactive to the beginning of 2020.

Best, Jerry

Feb 25 2022 - 7:45am
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