Social Security Questions? Ask a Social Security Expert
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You should apply three months before you want your benefits to start.
Some people have to pay federal income taxes on their Social Security benefits. This usually happens only if you have other substantial income (such as wages, self-employment, interest, dividends and other taxable income that must be reported on your tax return) in addition to your benefits.
No one pays federal income tax on more than 85 percent of his or her Social Security benefits based on Internal Revenue Service (IRS) rules. If you:
more than $34,000, up to 85 percent of your benefits may be taxable.
file a joint return, and you and your spouse have acombined income* that is
more than $44,000, up to 85 percent of your benefits may be taxable.
No one pays federal income tax on more than 85 percent of his or her Social Security benefits based on Internal Revenue Service (IRS) rules.
Each year SSA reviews the records for all working Social Security recipients. If your earnings for the prior year are higher than one of the years they used to compute your retirement benefit, they will recalculate your benefit amount. SSA pays the increase retroactive to January the year after you earned the money.
Here is a link to the SSA calendar for paying benefits