When Will I Get My Delayed Retirement Credits?

Oct 28 2016 - 8:15am

I turned 68 in September 2016. I have applied to start receiving my retirement benefits to receive my 1st check in January 2017 (my 1st check will be the 2nd Wednesday in January 2017). I have read on the Social Security website that "If you retire before age 70, some of your delayed retirement credits will not be applied until the January after you start benefits." Does this mean I will get all my delayed credits earned thru December 2016 in my 1st check that I will receive in January 2017 or will I not get all of them until January 2018?



When you apply for benefits between full retirement age and age 70, delayed retirement credits (DRC) are initially credited only through December of the calendar year prior to your month of entitlement. If your first payment is scheduled to arrive in January 2017, your first month of entitlement to benefits is December 2016. So, your starting benefit rate will only include the DRCs you earned through December 2015.

The other 11 DRCs for the months January 2016 through November 2016 will be added later, and will increase your benefit rate effective with your payment for January 2017. Post-entitlement DRCs are added through an automated process. Due to budget limits, the Social Security Administration (SSA) has given this process a relatively low priority, and only runs the updates every other year. The increases due are fully retroactive, but this results in a substantial delay in receiving the proper amount of DRCs. As a result, it may be until sometime in 2018 before your final 11 months of DRCs are added. You will receive the appropriate back pay to January 2017, however.

Best, Jerry