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Lev, Tax Advisor
Category: Tax
Satisfied Customers: 29558
Experience:  Taxes, Immigration, Labor Relations
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Am a widow, & 't want to wait any longer to take Social

Customer Question

Good morning - am a widow, & don't want to wait any longer to take Social Security survivor benefits - am age 65 & 1/2 - will be 66 (FRA) in March 2016. I have $2000 withdrawn from my annual $65884.00 salary, that funds a Flexible Spending Account. I have been advised that I would receive $1800/mo in survivor benefits, when I do collect. I will be withdrawing the maximum of $2500 to fund FSA for 2016. My State salary is subject to increments, so I don't know if it will increase for 2016. Two questions, if you please: 1. say I should apply today to receive survivor benefits prior to March 2016 - what would a ballpark tax liability be, and 2. how do I go about funding a Health Savings Account (HSA), as I don't seem to have much time to do so - did not apply for Medicare, as my State employer provides health insurance coverage (BC/BS). Thank you very much for your time and expertise. Bernadette
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Tax
Expert:  Lev replied 1 year ago.

A widow or widower, age 60 or older, but under full retirement age, gets about 71-99 percent of the worker’s basic benefit amount; or
A widow or widower, any age, with a child younger than age 16, gets 75 percent of the worker’s benefit amount;

If you work while getting Social Security survivors benefits and are younger than full retirement age, the SSA may reduce your benefits if your earnings exceed certain limits.

If you’re younger than full retirement age during all of 2015, the SSA must deduct $1 from your benefits for each $2 you earn above $15,720.

That actually means - you will NOT receive any social security benefits - and ther eis NO reason for you to apply while you are still working.

There’s no earnings limit beginning with the month you reach full retirement age.