Your Social Security – Growing Your Benefits Beyond Retirement Age

Your Social Security – Growing Your Benefits Beyond Retirement Age

Photo of Jane Yamamoto-Burigsay

Jane Yamamoto-Burigsay
Courtesy: Social Security Administration

For more and more Americans, reaching retirement age no longer means the end of an active working life. According to the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics, many people are choosing to work past the age of 65,

If you are willing and able, maintaining gainful employment until later in life could go a long way toward ensuring a secure future for you and your family. Besides providing you with additional income to pay your bills, extending your employment or working for yourself could boost your lifetime Social Security benefits.

Here’s how:

Waiting to claim your Social Security retirement benefits could grow them by up to 32 percent. Through delayed retirement credits, your monthly benefit amount increases by about 8 percent for each year you wait between your full retirement age and 70. Full retirement age is between 65 and 67, depending on when you were born. To learn more about delayed retirement credits, please visit www.socialsecurity.gov/planners/retire/delayret.html.

You get credits on your earnings record for each year of additional work income. Once you start receiving retirement benefits, we will automatically review your earnings record each year to determine if you are entitled to an adjustment. When we calculate your retirement benefit amount, we use your best 35 years of earnings. We will increase your benefit amount if your new year of earnings is higher than one of the years we used to calculate your initial benefit amount. To see how we calculate your benefits, visit www.socialsecurity.gov/pubs/EN-05-10070.pdf.

An increased benefit amount for yourself could mean more support for your family, too, through Social Security spousal benefits, child benefits and survivor benefits.

We also encourage you to set up your own my Social Security account so you can verify your lifetime earnings record, check the status of an application for benefits and manage them after you’re receiving them. You can create your personal my Social Security account today at www.socialsecurity.gov/
myaccount
.

Social Security is committed to helping you prepare for a secure today and tomorrow for you, your family and future family. You can access all of our retirement resources at www.socialsecurity.gov/planners/retire.

Jane Yamamoto-Burigsay is Social Security’s public affairs specialist in Hawai‘i.

QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS:

Question:  I’m 17 and eager to start my first summer job, but my mother misplaced my Social Security card. How can I get another?

Answer:  If you know your Social Security number, you may not need to get a replacement card to obtain employment. However, if a prospective employer requests it, you can get a replacement Social Security card by following the steps below. There is no charge for a Social Security card, but you are limited to three per calendar year and 10 replacement cards during your lifetime.

You will need to:

• Show the required documents. We need to see different documents depending on your citizenship and the type of card you are requesting. Go to www.socialsecurity.gov/ssnumber to find out what documents you will have to show;

• Fill out an Application for a Social Security Card; and

• Take or mail your application and original or certified copies of the original documents to your local Social Security office.

For more information, read our pamphlet, Your Social Security Number and Card at www.socialsecurity.gov/pubs.

Jane Yamamoto-Burigsay is Social Security’s public affairs specialist in Hawai‘i.

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