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LawTalk
LawTalk, Attorney
Category: Social Security
Satisfied Customers: 35309
Experience:  I have 30 years of legal and litigation experience, including representing clients before the U.S. Social Security Administration.
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Should I take a Social Security Bridge until age 62? What

Customer Question

Should I take a Social Security Bridge until age 62? What happens to my Social Security payment at 62.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Social Security
Expert:  LawTalk replied 1 year ago.

Good evening Brian,

I'm Doug, and I'm very sorry to hear of your situation. My goal is to provide you with excellent service today.

If you are eligible for the Bridge because you have at least 35 years of work history and you have been unemployed for at least 52 weeks, you qualify, but doing so will lock your benefits for life based on the early retirement penalty that the Bridge imposes.

If you retire at age 62, your full retirement benefits are reduced by a full 25%. By applying for the Bridge, you lose an additional percentage. But it isn't quite as bad as it sounds. Let me explain.

As a practical matter, based on the actuarial tables, you will get no less over your lifetime taking the bridge than you would by waiting until age 62 or older. However, with the Bridge, you would simply get less money for a longer period of time.

At age 62 your social security benefit would begin to be paid at the age 62 rate but your pension benefit from the employer would drop----and you would in effect be receiving the same amount of monthly income from both social security and from your employer pension as you did before reaching age 62 when your Bridge payment was all from your employer benefit plan.

So, it all depends on whether you must have the money now to live on. If you can postpone it, it would mean more money down the road in later years when the cost of living starts to eat away at your retirement income.

You may reply back to me using the Reply link and I will be happy to continue to assist you until I am able to address your concerns, to your satisfaction.

Kindly, remember to rate my service to you. That is how I am credited for assisting you.

I wish you and yours the best in 2015,

Doug