How Does Deeming Affect Our Maximized Strategy

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Jun 28 2016 - 11:30pm

Hi, I purchased your software last year. I am the lower earning spouse, and have been receiving SS retirement benefits since I turned 62 (in Oct. 2008). I will be 70 in October. My wife will turn 66 in October. According to your software, in order to maximize our combined benefits, my wife should apply for spousal benefits in July (3 months prior to her birthday). Then, when she turns 70 she can file for her own higher retirement benefit. I have read in a number of publications about filing a "restricted application," and am confused about whether in addition to filing for spousal benefits, she also files a "restricted application." Or is the "restricted application" implied by merely filing for spousal benefits? We'd like to file online, but don't want to screw this up, since it sounds like undoing a mistake is extremely difficult. We want to make sure she is just filing for spousal benefits now, and leaves her own retirement benefit to grow for another 4 years. Can you please set us straight? Thanks, Harvey

Hi Harvey, first, don't post support questions in the Ask Larry forum. Click on Support and Resources and submit any future questions that way. I do want to address this since it might be instructive to others however. Are you sure that you both have non-covered pensions, pensions based on income you didn't pay Social Security tax on? If not, your results won't be accurate since you've entered that you both do. Also, note that in the maximized strategy, your wife files for her spousal benefit at, not before her full retirement age (FRA). If she filed for it before her FRA, she'd be deemed to have also filed for her retirement benefit and both would be permanently reduced. Thanks, John