Q & A
I heard the full retirement age for Social Security will be 67…when is that going to happen?
Complete Question: I keep hearing that the full retirement age for Social Security benefits is going to increase to 67 years old. I’m currently 54 (born in 1958). Will my full retirement age be 66 or 67?
Answer: Actually, it will be in between 66 and 67 for you. You are right that the Social Security Administration is increasing the full retirement age to 67; however, this will be a gradual process over time. People who were born in 1954 and will be 61 years old this year will be the last ones to enjoy a full retirement age of 66. After that, the age will progressively increase over time until those born in 1960 or later will have to deal with a full retirement age of 67. Since you were born in 1958, your full retirement age is actually 66 years and 8 months.
Something else about this that people born in 1955 or later should consider is the effect of delayed retirement credits. As the full retirement age increases, delayed retirement credits decrease. Delayed retirement credits are equal to an increase of benefits by 8% per year from full retirement age until age 70. Therefore, right now a person can earn up to a 32% increase in their benefit payment (8% x 4 years). However, when the full retirement age increases to age 67, the maximum delayed retirement credit will be 24% (8% x 3 years). Unless there is new legislation, the maximum age someone can earn delayed credits is age 70. Therefore, increasing the retirement age also decreases the potential delayed retirement credits.