Q & A

My husband will be 62 next February. I am 60 and have been the higher wage earner for many years. He is a farmer and I’m a nurse. With what I’ve been reading, it sounds like, if necessary, it would be best for my husband to apply for his retirement benefits early, and then check when I turn 66 to see if the spousal benefits would be greater than his reduced retirement benefits. Does that sound right? (I provide health benefits through my employer.)

Answer: No, this doesn’t sound right. What may be the best option is for you to take your retirement benefit at age 64, thus permitting your husband to apply, at his full retirement age, just for his spousal benefit based on your earnings history. When he reaches age 70, he can then apply for his own retirement benefit. When you reach age 66 (your full retirement age), you would suspend your retirement benefit and start it up at age 70.

Source: http://www.pbs.org – Larry Kotlikoff, 11/7/2013


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