How Much Can I Earn If I Take Benefits Early?

Dec 20 2016 - 7:15am

My full retirement age is age 66.
I will turn 66 in December of 2018.
If I decide to take my SS at age 65 in February of 2018 before reaching FRA and continue to work for several months how much can I make being employed before they start penalizing my SS?


Hi Mike,

The exempt amount of earnings for people who reach full retirement age (FRA) in 2017 is $44,880. The 2018 exempt amount won't be announced until late next year, but it shouldn't be any less than $44,880.

What that means is that if you follow your plan, you could earn up to roughly $44,880 in the months January through November of 2018 without losing any of your benefits to the earnings test. Then, there will be no limit on the amount that you can earn starting December 2018, the month you reach FRA.

Before filing, though, you may want to consider running the maximization software available on this website in order to explore all of your filing options.

Best, Jerry