My husband is currently receiving SSA payments on a restricted application for spousal benefits. He turns 70 on December 23 of this year. My question is should he file for his own benefit to begin in January 2023 or earlier because of the anticipated high COLA for 2022? Will it make any difference at all if he receives his first SSA payment in 2022 or 2023 as far as receiving COLA? Thank you for your input.
Hi. All Social Security cost of living (COLA) increases that occur after a person turns age 62 are added to a their Social Security retirement benefit rate regardless of whether or not they are collecting benefits. If there's a COLA increase effective January 2023, your husband will get credit for that increase regardless of when he claims his benefits. Therefore, assuming that your husband's own benefit rate will be higher than his spousal rate, he'll want to claim his own benefits no later than the month he reaches age 70 (i.e. December).