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A Burning Question: When Should You Claim Social Security? - Motley Fool

There is an 8 year window during which you may claim your Social Security retirement benefit, starting at age 62 and ending at age 70. Actually, claiming at age 70 isn’t mandatory, but there’s no reason to wait longer because benefits stop growing effective with the month you turn 70. Statistically, and somewhat understandably, most people claim benefits as soon as possible at, or shortly after, becoming eligible at 62. Trouble is, that is usually an emotional decision which doesn’t consider this important point – Social Security will almost certainly be a very important factor in their retirement future. Benefits claimed at 62 are somewhere between 25% and 30% less than that actually entitled to at full retirement age, and about 75% less than the maximum benefit available at age 70. Thus, there are real financial consequences to claiming early, and substantial financial advantage by waiting longer, as explained in this Motley Fool article by Sean Williams.

Also, if you’re unsure about how these basics apply to you, or if you have any questions about your individual situation under Social Security, note that the AMAC Foundation provides a free-to-the-public advisory service to help Americans navigate the complexities of this program. Learn more about it here…

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