Hello. My mother has been receiving Survivors Social benefits since age 60 or 62. She has just turned 65, 12th Nov. According to the ssa.gov website, her benefit should increase to 95% but I am also finding information about her needing to reach her retirement age - 67. I'm confused. Online I have found info that says at age 60 - you receive 71.5%, 62 - 81.00%, 64 - 90.50%, 65 - 92.25% and 66 - 100%. Also, would the rate most likely change after her birthday or in the new year? Any advice much appreciated. Thanks
Since your mother was apparently born in 1954, her full retirement age (FRA) for Social Security benefits is 66. If she files for her own Social Security retirement benefits effective with the month she turns 65, she'll receive roughly 93.33% of her FRA rate. Your mother would only be paid the higher of her own retirement benefit rate or her survivor rate, though, not both.
If your mother's own Social Security retirement benefit rate will be higher than her survivor rate, it would likely be advantageous for her to wait until age 70 to switch from survivor to retirement benefits. Her retirement benefit rate will continue to grow until age 70 as long as she doesn't claim her own benefits before then, but once she files for her own benefits her rate will no longer continue to grow other than for cost of living increases. If she waits all the way until age 70 to claim her own retirement benefits, her benefit rate will be 32% higher than what it would be if she claims her benefits at FRA.
Your mother may want to consider using our software (https://maximizemysocialsecurity.com/purchase) to fully explore and compare her options in order to determine the best way to maximize her benefits.