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SS Start and COL increase question
Old 08-04-2022, 05:49 AM   #1
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SS Start and COL increase question

OpenSocialSecurity says my DW should start SS around the beginning of 2023. Anticipatining a large COL increase in SS for next year. If she claims starting in Dec 2022, her first check would be in Jan 2023. Correct?

Will that check include the 2023 COL increase or would she just expect to get the increase in the February check ?

We are keeping AGI down this year to maximize ACA subsidies, but that is not a concern for 2023 (We both turn 65 early in the year). Claiming her SS to start in Dec 2022 should not generate any 2022 income. Correct?

Are there any downsides to starting SS in Dec (pre FRA) ?
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Old 08-04-2022, 07:12 AM   #2
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Yes, her first check would be Jan 2023. I think the 2023 COL would hit the Feb check.
Correct on no income this year from a 2022 December start. I had the same situation before age 65.
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Old 08-04-2022, 07:14 AM   #3
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OpenSocialSecurity says my DW should start SS around the beginning of 2023. Anticipatining a large COL increase in SS for next year. If she claims starting in Dec 2022, her first check would be in Jan 2023. Correct? Correct

Will that check include the 2023 COL increase or would she just expect to get the increase in the February check ? COL increases are paid beginning with the check received in January so she should receive the COL increase

We are keeping AGI down this year to maximize ACA subsidies, but that is not a concern for 2023 (We both turn 65 early in the year). Claiming her SS to start in Dec 2022 should not generate any 2022 income. Correct? Correct

Are there any downsides to starting SS in Dec (pre FRA) ? Well, other than her check will be smaller than if she had waited and assuming her benefit is more than 50% of your PIA, I can't think of any other downsides.
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Old 08-04-2022, 06:34 PM   #4
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As usual, it's better to wait until age 70 to file for SS, if you can afford it...
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Old 08-04-2022, 06:40 PM   #5
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Thanks for the reply Wizard. As I stated in the OP, this is based on recommendations from Open Social Security. I as the high wage earner will be waiting till 70 to collect on my record, and allow my wife to collect on that amount if I pass first. We are lucky to not need (but certainly don't mind getting) her SS check now. No reason to wait longer as her benefit is just about half mine at the same age. We waited till now to better control AGI while collecting a good ACA subsidy.
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Old 08-04-2022, 06:47 PM   #6
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Sounds like you're in good shape then.
Go for it in December...
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Old 08-04-2022, 07:27 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by SomedaySoon View Post
Thanks for the reply Wizard. As I stated in the OP, this is based on recommendations from Open Social Security. I as the high wage earner will be waiting till 70 to collect on my record, and allow my wife to collect on that amount if I pass first. We are lucky to not need (but certainly don't mind getting) her SS check now. No reason to wait longer as her benefit is just about half mine at the same age. We waited till now to better control AGI while collecting a good ACA subsidy.
One option is for her to file on her benefits early at a reduced rate and then file for "spousal benefits" when you file at age 70. However, her "spousal benefits" would be reduced by the same percentage. Should you pass, then her "survivor benefits" would be based on 100% of your benefits
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Old 08-04-2022, 08:50 PM   #8
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One option is for her to file on her benefits early at a reduced rate and then file for "spousal benefits" when you file at age 70. However, her "spousal benefits" would be reduced by the same percentage. Should you pass, then her "survivor benefits" would be based on 100% of your benefits
To finish the last sentence 'Should you pass, then her "survivor benefits" would be based on 100% of your benefits' if she claims at her FRA or after it.
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Old 08-05-2022, 06:46 AM   #9
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To finish the last sentence 'Should you pass, then her "survivor benefits" would be based on 100% of your benefits' if she claims at her FRA or after it.
Right you are. To clarify: "if she claims "Survivor benefits" at her FRA or after it."

Her early filing on her own benefits has no effect on any survivor benefits. Filing for Survivor benefits before her FRA will reduce that amount.
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Old 08-05-2022, 07:05 AM   #10
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As usual, it's better to wait until age 70 to file for SS, if you can afford it...
This has been discussed ad nauseam here for years now.

"Better" for whom? Everyone has a different story, need and life/health condition; for many, age 62 is "better". Break-even it around 82, so the true answer, I believe is "It Depends" (on the individual).

"Affording it" is only one of the inputs.
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Old 08-05-2022, 09:14 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by SomedaySoon View Post
We are keeping AGI down this year to maximize ACA subsidies, but that is not a concern for 2023 (We both turn 65 early in the year). Claiming her SS to start in Dec 2022 should not generate any 2022 income. Correct?

Are there any downsides to starting SS in Dec (pre FRA) ?
If you both turn 65 early in the year, then she would have surpassed her FRA if she claims survivor benefits when you turn 70.

We are in almost the same situation and are following open social security suggestions. I am filing for a Sept. 1 start as I turn 65 in Sept. and will begin Medicare. DH files at 70 and I'll file for spousal benefits, well past my FRA.
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