3 Ways to Maximize Your Social Security Benefits

Julia Carlson |

You may already know that waiting to claim Social Security benefits can result in higher monthly payments. However, there are lesser-known ways to maximize your benefits, some of which depend on your marital status.

To best understand the choices for maximizing your Social Security retirement income benefits, here is a review of the retirement benefit options:

  1. The Worker Benefit: This is the benefit you receive based on your own personal earnings history, and for which you become eligible after 40 quarters of work.
  2. The Spousal Benefit: This is the benefit paid to your spouse. For non-working spouses, this is 50% of the working spouse’s benefit. For working spouses, it is the greater of the benefit earned from their earnings or 50% of the worker’s benefit.
  3. The Survivor Benefit: This is the benefit paid to the surviving spouse, which is paid at a rate equal to the greater of their own current benefit, or, depending on the widow or widower’s age, up to 100% of the deceased spouse’s current benefit.1

The simplest strategy for maximizing your Social Security benefit is to wait to reach age 70 before beginning to take benefits. By waiting until age 70 to receive benefits, your monthly payments may increase by 24%, not including any cost-of-living increases that may be added to this amount.2

Considering these three choices can help maximize your Social Security benefits. Contact us to discuss what the best option is for you.

  1. SSA.gov
  2. 2. SSA.gov, 2021

Information in this material is for general information only and not intended as investment, tax or legal advice. Please consult the appropriate professionals for specific information regarding your individual situation prior to making any financial decision. 

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