Avoiding Social Security Mistakes

Charlie and Ann were both 66 years old when Charlie passed away. At the time, neither of them was collecting a Social Security benefit. Shortly after the funeral, Ann came in to meet with her financial advisor.  She needed income and, according to her Social Security annual statement, was entitled to about $2,000 a month. Her survivor’s benefit from Charlie was only $1,800 per month.

So, at first glance, it appeared as if she should take her own benefit. But what Ann was not aware of was that, if she chose to take her survivor’s benefit for four years (until she turned 70), then her own benefit of $2,000 would continue to grow. So, when she turned 70, she would be able to switch over to her own benefit-which we projected to be $2,800 per month.

So, a few years of taking a slight reduction in her Social Security income could result in a fairly significant increase in income down the road.

* These are hypothetical case studies and are for illustrative purposes only. Actual performance and results will vary. These case studies do not constitute a recommendation as to the suitability of any investment for any person or persons having circumstances similar to those portrayed, and a financial advisor should be consulted.