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Q: Am I eligible for social security benefits?'
A: You may qualify, under the Windfall Elimination Program (WEP). However, if you do, your benefits will likely be reduced. SEE BELOW:
The Basics of Social Security in Ohio
If you work in local or state government in Ohio, there are two rules that could affect your ability to claim 100% of your Social Security benefit. The rules are called the “Windfall Elimination Provision (WEP)” and the “Government Pension Offset (GPO).”
These two provisions reduce (or completely eliminate) benefits for individuals who worked at a job where they:
A) did not pay Social Security tax
B) earned a pension from that work
For example, if you work as a teacher in Ohio you will not pay Social Security taxes. However, that work alone is not enough to subject you to the WEP or GPO provisions. You must also meet the service requirements and qualify for a pension to be affected by these hefty benefit reductions.
From a high level, it’s critical to understand that the WEP rule only applies to individuals who are entitled to a Social Security benefit based on their own work history and have a pension from work where they did not pay Social Security tax. Meanwhile, the GPO rule only applies to individuals who are entitled to a Social Security benefit as a survivor or spouse and have a pension from work in which they did not pay Social Security tax.
When you apply for social security, be sure to ask if you qualify for benefits under the WEP. Let me know if I can be of further assistance to you regarding this matter. If I have addressed your inquiry, I ask that you take the time and scroll to the top of the page and select 3 or more stars to positively rate my response so that I can receive credit for assisting you. Thank you in advance.