Social Security: The Importance of Understanding the Rules - Forbes, AMAC Foundation

“Most Americans don’t know what they don’t know about Social Security.” That’s the opening sentence in a post by Forbes Senior Contributor Bob Carlson. And speaking on behalf of the Social Security Advisory Staff here at the AMAC Foundation, we agree 100+%! Our experience in the nearly 18,000 inquiries our Advisors have handled since launching the program in 2016 support Carlson’s observation completely.

Whether it’s technical misunderstandings, like not knowing the amount of benefit discount associated with filing before full retirement age, or fundamental confusion, like not being aware of the level of benefits paid to survivors, we work hard to help folks understand how Social Security’s myriad rules and regulations fit their specific circumstances. As Carlson points out in his post, the decisions made with respect to Social Security filing require careful study to ensure that the outcomes are the best for each individual.

As Carlson reports, nearly 70% of the respondents to a recent survey felt confident that their Social Security benefit will “support” them in retirement. Unfortunately, one wonders if this comfort level overlooks the fact that Social Security’s income replacement rate is about 40%–and declining as income grows. A lack of understanding of actually how much of a benefit will be paid by Social Security could also lead to a false sense of security for those retirement years. Either way, not knowing the details can lead to disappointment when reaching the retirement stage, especially since the decisions are generally permanent and irrevocable and there is essentially no time to recover.

You can access Carlson’s post here. And if you feel you need any additional support in understanding how Social Security applies to you, feel free to contact our AMAC Foundation Social Security Advisory Staff…our program is provided at no charge, and is available via telephone of email. Learn more about it here…

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