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Social Security Retirement Claim
 
Social Security retirement claim is cash paid to a member who can no longer work due to old age. When you work and pay Social Security taxes, you earn credits toward Social Security benefits. A member who is sixty years old and unemployed can qualify for Social Security retirement claim. Your Social Security retirement claim payment is base on how much you earned during your working career. If there were some years when you did not work or had low earnings, your Social Security retirement claim may be lower than if you had worked steadily.

Members and their dependent families are eligible for Social Security retirement claim if the worker has earned enough work credits. Work credits are determined by the number of quarters a worker is employed from 1936 to retirement. To be eligible, workers must have been employed for as many quarters as there are years between 1950 and the year he or she reaches age sixty-two. An individual first becomes eligible to a Social Security retirement claim benefits at age sixty-two. You will receive lower benefits, however, if you retire before age sixty-five. Although you can get Social Security retirement claim benefits as early as age sixty-two but if you retire before your full retirement age, your benefits will be permanently reduced based on your age.

Some people continue to work full time beyond their full retirement age and they don’t sign up for Social Security until later. With this delay, your extra income will usually increase your average earnings and the higher your average earnings the higher your Social Security retirement claim. Further, a special credit is given to people who delay retirement. This credit, which is a percentage added to your Social Security retirement claim varies depending on your date of birth. For individuals turning age sixty-five in 2000, the rate is six percent per year. That rate gradually increases in future years, until it reaches eight percent per year for people turning age sixty-five in 2008 or later.

If you have children eligible for Social Security, each will receive up to one-half of your full benefit. But there is a limit to the amount of money that can be paid to a family usually 150-180 percent of your own benefit payment. If the total benefits due to your spouse and children are more than this limit, their benefits will be reduced. Your benefit will not be affected.

There are disadvantages and advantages to taking your Social Security retirement claim before your full retirement age. The disadvantage is that your benefit is permanently reduced. The advantage is that you collect benefits for a longer period of time. Each person's situation is different, so make sure you contact Social Security before you decide to retire.

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