RP asked in Business & FinancePersonal Finance · 1 decade ago

Social security payments question -?

I am in my mid 50s and lost my job during the recent recession, have not been able to find work yet. My question is on any impact to my future social security payments. I planned on starting SS at 62 so thats in about 6 years from now. If, god forbid, I don't have any income from a job for the next 6 years, will that 'reduce' my social security monthly payment? I am not sure how SS is calculated. I am fully paid in my quarters by far - I have worked for the last 35 years non-stop paying in every week. My highest annual salary peaked back in the 1990s thru 2002, then dropped significantly for the last 8 years (by that I mean I went from about 70k a year to about 35k a year due to change in job/career field). My estimate for SS retirement payment had for the last few years hovered around $1200/month. My question is, if I do not work & have no income for the next few years until I turn 62, will that monthly payment amount of 1200 be reduced because of lack of income the last few years before retiring? I do not know how they calculate social security payments. Any information would be greatly appreciated.

3 Answers

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    The amount of SSA benefits you are currently entitled to will not drop due to lack of work.

    The SSA uses your "top 35" years of income to determine your benefits. If you do not have 35 years, they use $0 for the missing years. According to you, you have 35 years.

    The real problem is retiring at 62. You will probably only get $840 of the projected $1200. This is a permanent reduction because you retire before 66/67, not because you didn't work.

  • Kini
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago

    If you make no further contributions your monthly benefit will not increase. If your currently anticipated monthly benefit at age 62 is $1200, it will not be reduced. Are you sure the $1200 is your retirement at age 62, not at age 66? I stopped working at age 56 due to disability and my income from Social Security is less than $1200 but that was explained to me that the amount I get is what I would get if I waited to age 66.

  • Bob B
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago

    It's my understanding that social security payments are based on your highest-earnings quarters. The lack of income in the intervening quarters shouldn't be a factor at all. I was in a similar situation and mine weren't reduced from what I was expecting.

    [added]

    I had eight years of drastically reduced earnings before I started drawing social security last year.

    Source(s): http://ssa.gov/
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