How Work Affects Your Retirement Benefits

If you are wondering how work affects  your retirement benefits, you will find answers in this article that may help you make a decision as to whether or not to continue working once you are retired.

  1. You can work and receive Social Security retirement or survivors benefits. However, if you have not reached full retirement age and earn more than the specified amount (which often changes) each year, that will reduce your benefits, deducting $1.00 from your benefit for each $2.00 you earn. 
  2. Once you reach full retirement age, your benefit will be increased and you can keep it all no matter how much you earn. 
  3. If you work for someone, only your wages, commissions, bonuses, and vacation pay count toward the earnings limit. 
  4. If self-employed, only your NET earnings are counted.  If you are self-employed and work more than 45 hours a MONTH, you are not retired. 
  5. Income from other government benefits, interest, pension, investment earnings, annuities, and capital gains is NOT counted. 
  6. There are special rules if you retire in mid-year, and you will get a full Social Security check for each complete month in  which you are retired. 
  7. The amount of your yearly earnings in the year before the month you retire does not count.
  8. Each year those who work and get Social Security benefits have their records reviewed. 
  9. If the latest year is one of  your highest earning years,  your benefit will be increased and you will get an increase in December of the following year which is retroactive to January of that year.
  10. Rising living costs and the decline in the value of many retirement plans make it imperative for many seniors to continue working.  Staying active also leads to happier and healthier golden years.


Reference: SSA

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