Social Security Changes

Posted in: News, Tax

Double claiming has been eliminated for people who turn 62 after 12/31/2015. Some dual-earning couples who are 66 or older have “double claimed” by having the lower earner claim half the higher earner’s social security temporarily while allowing the lower income individual’s social security to build.

Dependents can no longer claim payments if the primary claimer suspends payments. In past, individuals could claim social security benefits and immediately suspend the payments but the spouse and children could continue to claim their portion. Now, if the primary claimer suspends payments, the spouse and children’s payments will also be suspended.

Retirees can continue to suspend social security payments, and resume them at age 70 at a higher payment amount due to accumulation of delayed retirement credits.

Married individuals can still claim 50% of the higher earning spouse’s benefit. Widows/widowers may claim the deceased spouse’s benefit if it is higher. Choose wisely.