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I am preparing to retire as a teacher under my CALSTRS

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Hello! I am preparing...

Hello! I am preparing to retire as a teacher under my CALSTRS pension at an estimated amount of $3,351. My current Social Security benefit is: currently stated at $1,553. My question is what would be an estimate as to how much I expect to see my Social Security benefit be reduced down to. Thank you.

Accountant's Assistant: These retirement benefits are supposed to help us but they can be so complicated! The Retirement Expert will help you get the most benefits propertly. Is there anything else the Retirement Accountant should be aware of?

No I don't think so.

Submitted: 6 months ago.Category: Social Security
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Answered in 4 minutes by:
11/29/2017
Social Security Expert: lev-tax, Tax Advisor replied 6 months ago
lev-tax
lev-tax, Tax Advisor
Category: Social Security
Satisfied Customers: 32,984
Experience: Taxes, Immigration, Labor Relations
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You may avoid WEP if you have at least 30 years in substantial earnings covered by social security taxes.

For 2017 the substantial earning amount is $23,625

You wonder how social security benefits and WEP affect are calculated?

Please find amounts of substantial earning for past years in this publication - second page - left table.

https://www.ssa.gov/pubs/EN-05-10045.pdf#page=2

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Social Security Expert: lev-tax, Tax Advisor replied 6 months ago

.

To understand WEP calculation - we need to know HOW social security benefits are calculated.

The SSA bases Social Security benefits on your lifetime earnings.

The SSA will adjust or “index” your actual earnings to account for changes in average wages since the year the earnings were received.

Then Social Security calculates your average indexed monthly earnings during the 35 years in which you earned the most.

If you worked less than 35 year - zeros are used for missing years.

That is why additional years of earning will increase your benefits.

See worksheet on second page in following publication

https://www.ssa.gov/pubs/EN-05-10070.pdf

They apply a formula to these earnings and arrive at your basic benefit, or “primary insurance amount” - PIA.

.

Now - to determine WEP effect - see in the worksheet

Step 5: a. Multiply the first $885 in Step 4 by 90%.

When you are affected by WEP - instead of 90% we need to use lower percentage which may be between 40% and 85% depending on number of years with substantial earning

- see right table in the first publication about WEP.

These worksheets will give you full understanding about calculations.

.

For quick results - you may use online calculator provided by the SSA

https://www.ssa.gov/planners/retire/anyPiaWepjs04.html

Let me know if that addressed your concerns.

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