October 30, 2019 | eFocus @ Legacy

By: Rachel K. Wolf, Trust Tax and Financial Planning Officer

In our January 2019 issue, I outlined a Social Security benefit-claiming strategy available to individuals born before January 2, 1954. The restricted application strategy allows an eligible individual to defer collecting retirement benefits on his own record, while at the same time claiming retirement benefits on his spouse’s record. The advantage of this strategy is an income benefit from the spouse’s record while simultaneously earning delayed retirement credits on his own record. The delayed retirement credits accrue at a rate of 8 percent for each year of delay, up to a maximum of 32 percent.

Effective this January new filing rules, called deemed filing rules, close this strategy loophole for people who will reach age 66, full retirement age (FRA), on or after January 2, 2020. When filing for retirement benefits, he or she will be “deemed” to have filed for all benefits available, regardless of
age, and will be paid the larger of two (spousal) amounts.

For additional information, including eligibility requirements and more details on this claiming strategy, please refer to the January 2019 online edition of this newsletter, located here. If you have further questions, or if you wish to apply for retirement benefits using this strategy before it is
discontinued, we urge you to contact your local Social Security Administration Office.