The baby boomer generation is now reaching the age of retirement, and as a result there are thousands of people becoming eligible for Social Security. Many questions are being asked and we would like to address a couple that are frequently asked.
How old do you have to be to be able to apply for Social Security?
People who were born in 1960 and later reach the age of full retirement at 67. If you were born between 1943 and 1954 you are eligible for your full benefit at the age of 66. Those born in 1955 become eligible when they are 66 years and two months old. The age of eligibility then rises by two months per year until 1960.
You can apply for your benefit four months before your actual date of eligibility.
People who are eligible for Social Security benefits have the option of applying and receiving reduced benefits before your full retirement age. You can start receiving your benefit when you are as young as 62, but it will not be as high as it would be if you waited until you reached the full eligibility age.
Delaying your application is another option. It is possible to refrain from applying even after you reach the age of full eligibility. If you do this the benefit that you eventually receive will be higher than it would have been if you retired as soon as you became fully eligible.
The other common question that people have involves how to apply. You can go to the Social Security Administration office that is local to you. Another possibility is to apply by phone at 800-772-1213. Perhaps the simplest option for those who are Internet savvy would be to apply online.
Should you be interested in doing so simply follow this link: Submit Social Security Application Online
Author, President and Founding Attorney
Parman & Easterday
Parman & Easterday are members of the American Academy of Estate Planning Attorneys.