When Should I File For Benefits?

May 8 2019 - 6:47pm

I'll turn 70 on September 16, 2019; my wife is 65 as of April 14, 1954. When should I file for benefits? June 2019 or July 2019? Should my wife file for Spousal benefits on April 2020 (she makes about $12K). I have enough credits for benefits. Thank you Larry...
P.S. I have your "How to Maximize your Social Security" book but I believe I'm misreading it.


Assuming that you want your benefits to begin effective with the month you attain age 70, you'll want to choose September 2019 as your month of election to begin benefits. Your first payment (i.e. for September), would then be due in October. You can apply for benefits up to 4 months in advance, so you could file as early as today.

I assume you meant to type that your wife was born on September 16 1954, in which case whenever she applies for spousal benefits she'll be deemed to also be applying for her own Social Security retirement benefits. She'll then receive essentially only the higher of those 2 rates, and her benefit amount will be reduced if she starts drawing her benefits prior to full retirement age (FRA). Her best filing strategy depends in large part on your relative benefit rates, so your wife should strongly consider using our software to explore and compare her various options.

Best, Jerry