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Process for moving from spouse SS to own record
Old 09-25-2016, 04:38 PM   #1
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Process for moving from spouse SS to own record

Has anyone completed the process of moving their SS benefit from DW SS record to their own?
I have been drawing on DW's record for four years and want to shift to my record but can not find online or otherwise the mechanics for getting it done. I also want to confirm the numbers for a Jan 17 start date (per recent thread not to get dinged) versus waiting until 9/17 when I am 70. It seems once you start to draw a benefit, there is little to no info on the steps to make the change.
At the same time, I also want to get my DW's benefit shifted to be based on my benefit. (I have the impression, that most she is entitled is to 50% of my FRA benefit and not the higher value for delayed benefit I have earned--correct?).
Thanks
Nwsteve
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Old 09-26-2016, 02:07 PM   #2
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I did exactly what you describe in June as I turned 70 in July. My wife and I went jointly to the local office and it was painless. I didn't attempt this online although I suppose it would be possible.

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Old 09-26-2016, 02:11 PM   #3
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As for the DW benefit, it is 50% of your FRA amount but will be reduced if she drew benefits early.

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Old 09-27-2016, 10:20 AM   #4
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Thanks to Misanman--apparently you are one of the few board members who have made this journey. Probably the first time I have posted a question on the ER Forum and not receive lots of helpful insight.
I finally bit the bullet and called my local SS office. Apparently, the main SS page does not give local numbers out but I found the number with a simple Google search.
Turns out I can make all the changes over the phone. Lady in the local office set an phone appointment in Nov for a Jan start date.
She was also helpful in providing an exact number for my full 70 benefit as well as what I will get if I start in Jan. next year. Turns out the difference was $66/month. Starting in Jan adds a net of 27500+ to our income so our breakeven on the $66 is way out there. A Jan start also ensures I will not take the "ding" on the amount mentioned in another recent thread regarding SS timing..
Plenty of time to change our mind, if something comes up to persuade me to walk away from the additional revenue.
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Old 09-27-2016, 07:44 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nwsteve View Post
Turns out I can make all the changes over the phone. Lady in the local office set an phone appointment in Nov for a Jan start date.
So, the idea is that you are going to talk on the phone with somebody at SS in November to get this all set up? I hope it goes smoothly.

I think it is encouraging that you can do this over the phone. I'm going to be doing more or less the same a year from next March, as I transition from divorced spousal SS to my own SS when turning 70. I admit that I'm a little nervous about it.

Like you, I'd rather deal with it on the phone than in person, so thanks for the tip on how to find the local SS office's phone number. I just Googled mine and the phone number popped right up.
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Old 09-27-2016, 07:48 PM   #6
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The phone people at SS know what they are doing, they helped me twice and nothing was missed.
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Old 09-28-2016, 07:05 AM   #7
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Like you, I'd rather deal with it on the phone than in person, so thanks for the tip on how to find the local SS office's phone number. I just Googled mine and the phone number popped right up.
FWIW, I've dealt with SS four times in the last ten years. Three times by simply walking into the local office and taking a number (never more than an hour's wait), and once by phone.

The one time using the phone (by appointment) was somewhat complicated, involving both me and DW. I gave her the information, but DW had to verify everything. She was out of the house, so the SS lady asked me for DW's cell phone number so she could clear everything up at once. I gave it to her, and immediately texted DW to tell her to answer the next call she got from an unknown number. She did, and the whole thing was completed in minutes. Great service.

The other times, in person, the folks I dealt with not only seemed to read my mind, but even offered extra information and couldn't have been more professional and efficient.

In every case, the people I dealt with were friendly, knowledgable, courteous, and professional. I was very impressed.
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Old 09-28-2016, 08:21 AM   #8
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That's good to know, RobbieB and Braumeister. Thanks.
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Old 09-29-2016, 07:47 AM   #9
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Slightly off topic, but related. I plan to start collecting on my own account at FRA of 66 (in a few months). My wife will turn 66 a few months later, and will file what I think is called a restricted application, to collect 1/2 of my amount. Can she do this restricted application on line or does it require a visit to a SS office?
Thanks.
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Old 09-29-2016, 09:18 AM   #10
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Not online, but it can be done by phone.
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Old 09-29-2016, 09:45 AM   #11
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Phone worked fine for me several years back. I do recommend you find your local SS office phone over the national number. In my recent conversation with our local office, there was a much shorter wait time and all spoke unaccented English.
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