Ask Larry

Calculating Retirement Benefits

How Are COLAs And DRCs Applied?

My FRA is 66. and will file for SS at age 70. Question is on the order of compounding for COLA's and DRC's: Are the COLA and DRC (8%) applied together year-by-year during each of the four delayed years, or is only the COLA applied each year and then after the fourth year the full 32% DRC is applied to the inflation-adjusted PIA balance?

Posted: 
Saturday, September 11, 2021 - 14:07

Will My Monthly Benefit Amount Continue To Decrease Due To Lower Earnings?

Hello. I am 61 years old. Previous SS statements indicated I would receive approximately $1,800 monthly in SS benefits upon full retirement age as was indicated upon 42 years of earnings. Started work at age 15.

Due to cancer, I changed my career to a contract court reporter and earned much less - to decrease stress. The next SS statement indicated the SS benefits would be $1,600. I think it is due to the major decrease in earnings. I was previously an IT Project Manager earning $90k annually and stressed to the max!

Posted: 
Wednesday, September 1, 2021 - 07:45

How Do I Get Social Security To Give Me The Rest Of My Delayed Retirement Credits?

I started receiving SS benefits at age 62 in 2011 in the amount of 1,379. At age 66 (FRA) in February of 2016, I suspended my benefits for 22months. I started my benefits again in December 2017. I received a letter in June 2017 saying my 8% increase (1500 x 1.08) would increase to 1,625. 1,500 was the amount I was receiving at the time I suspected my payment. The 8% increase was for the 12 months I suspended in 2016. I never received a notice in 2018 for the 10 months I suspended in 2017 which would be a little short of 7%.

Posted: 
Tuesday, August 31, 2021 - 15:00

Why Aren't My Part Time Earnings Causing My Benefit Rate To Increase?

I started collecting social security at 64 years old. Throughout my more than 40 working years i always paid the maximum FICA each year.
After retiring from my full time job at age 64 and starting to collect at that time, I worked part time with FICA taken out.
My question is why are these FICA contributions not adding to my retirement age with benefit increases that go along with it?
Can i opt out of paying FICA if i get no additional benefit from paying into it?

Posted: 
Monday, August 30, 2021 - 10:37

What Is The Correct Maximum Possible Benefit Rate?

Hi. So glad to have stumbled onto your site. I plan to buy the software but still have a question I cannot see an answer to here.

The SS site currently states that the maximum possible monthly retirement benefit for 2020 is $3895. Yet their calculator shows an amount slightly over $4000 if I delay until 70. Which is correct ? And does your software correctly deal with whatever the maximum is ?

Thanks
Mark

Posted: 
Thursday, August 19, 2021 - 11:31

What Effect Will Working Part-Time Have On My Benefit Calculation?

Hi Larry,

I just turned 62 and not working right now. If I start working part time and make significantly less money than what I was making full-time will that affect the amount on my current Social Security calculation. I don't plan to take early Social Security but I read that SS will recalculate your monthly SS payment if your earnings are reduced before you take your SS.

Hope that makes sense?

Thanks in advance.

Posted: 
Tuesday, August 17, 2021 - 16:41

Should I Start My Benefits This Year Because Of A Possible Drop In The 2020 Average Wage Index?

Hi Larry,
I have planned to start my Social Security retirement benefits in January 2022 when I will turn 70. But I am concerned about the possible drop in the average wage index from 2020 and it’s impact on my monthly benefits. Would it be better to start my benefits in December 2021 or wait one more month?

Thanks

Posted: 
Wednesday, August 11, 2021 - 11:41

Is My PIA Available Online?

I delayed my retirement benefits for exactly 4 years from age 66 (FRA) to 70, and will soon start collecting. I’m trying to locate my PIA to estimate spouse’s benefit. Is it on my Social Security Statement or online? If not, is my current PIA simply my benefit at age 70 reduced by 32% (4 years of delayed credits)?

Posted: 
Friday, August 6, 2021 - 13:09
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