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Ask Megan C Your Own Question
Megan C
Megan C, Certified Public Accountant (CPA)
Category: Social Security
Satisfied Customers: 16576
Experience:  Licensed CPA, CMA, CFE, CGMA M.Accy Also Teach Accounting courses at Master's Level
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My spouse is 10yrs younger. I am the higher earner. Are there

This answer was rated:

My spouse is 10yrs younger. I am the higher earner. Are there any pitfalls related to this age differential that I should think about if I am planning to collect reduced benefits at 62?

Megan C :

I realize you have a question about social security. My goal is to provide you with excellent service, and help you better understand your options.

Megan C :

How are you today?

Megan C :

The downfall that I can see on the age difference is that your wife's benefit would be reduced to 1/2 of your reduced benefit.

Megan C :

So, over time you may draw less money overall than if you had waited.

Customer:

Hello. I'm fine. So, when she claims her benefit at 62...it will be a reduction of a reduction

Megan C :

Oh and if she's 62 it will be even less ... only 35%

Megan C :

She would have to wait until her full retirement age, which is 67, to get a full 50% of your benefits

Customer:

do i only get 1 question

Megan C :

No you get as many as you can think of while we are sitting here :-)

Customer:

would her survivor benefit be 100?

Megan C :

Her survivor benefit would be 100% of your benefit if she drew it at age 67

Megan C :

If she draws it early it will be between 75% and up, depending on how old she is when she finally draws

Customer:

if i wait until 70yo...then here benefits would be 35% at 62....and 50% at 67?

Customer:

sorry. not 0

Customer:

not 70

Customer:

if i wait until 67

Megan C :

Your full retirement age is 66

Megan C :

If you wait until then, you get 100% of your benefit. She would still only get 35% of that amount if she drew at age 62

Customer:

ok. if i wait until 66

Customer:

thanks.

Megan C :

You're welcome

Customer:

got it. how does delaying from 66 to 70 work

Megan C :

You would get a larger benefit. It grows 8% per year

Megan C :

so your benefit could be as much as 32% higher

Customer:

this is great. last question(s)

Megan C :

Okay go ahead

Customer:

will she have the choice to claim her own benefits...vs...spousal?/

Megan C :

Yes, she always has a choice

Megan C :

If her benefit is higher, she can draw that.

Megan C :

If you pass away before she is full retirement age, she can draw the survivor benefit and allow her own benefit to grow to its maximum.

Customer:

makes sense. this is great. i wish i could think of more questions...

Megan C :

She can also draw the spousal benefit starting at age 67 and allow her own benefit to grow until age 70

Customer:

oh well. thank you for your time.

Customer:

that is good to know

Megan C :

But, she cannot draw the spousal benefit PRIOR to full retirement age and allow her benefit to grow

Customer:

makes sense

Megan C :

Do you have any more questions?

Customer:

one silly one

Customer:

do we have to continue to reside in the us

Megan C :

Never a silly question.

Megan C :

Where do you want to move, and are you US Citizens?

Customer:

i am a us citizen. but, if we were to move to say ....costa rica

Megan C :

Okay let me make sure you can continue your benefits indefinitely there

Customer:

does it depend on which country?

Megan C :

I just checked and costa rica is fine

Megan C :

There are certain countries that the Social Security administration won't send payments to

Customer:

where would i find that list?

Megan C :

It's countries that the US doesn't have good relations with

Megan C :

but let me get you the link

Megan C :

there's the link

Customer:

got it.

Megan C :

Do you have any more questions?

Customer:

when she decides to draw spousal benefits...does it impact my benefits

Megan C :

No it does not

Customer:

if my ex wife...of more than 10 years..unmarried....decides to draw...does it impact my benefits

Megan C :

No it does not, and it does not impact your wife's benefits either

Customer:

you are too good. thank you so much. i will use this service again.

Megan C :

Great! Come back and make sure you ask for me.

Megan C :

Also, before you leave, please rate the response as "excellent" so that I may receive credit for assisting you today

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