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The Importance Of Planning Ahead, Well Before You Retire

Some Advice Before Electing For Social Security


LOUISVILLE, KY. - Monthly Social Security benefits can represent a hefty monthly sum for Louisville retirees. But while electing for Social Security seems like an obvious choice, there are several important options to review before making any decisions. Local tax professional, Lee Byrd , provides some insight.

“Social Security is not a simple bit of legislation. Actually, hundreds of amendments have been piled into it. It’s become extremely complex. So to make the best decision about how to file for it, you’ll need to know your options,” Byrd stated.

Four primary methods are used when electing how to take Social Security. “Early filing,” “standard filing,” “delayed filing,” "file and suspend.” If you’re married, these can be mixed and matched in over 16 different ways.

“These methods differ significantly... they depend on your marital status, earnings, if you’re planning to work during retirement, longevity and rates of return. The choice alone could be worth $250,000 of income or more. The decision is even more crucial for women,” Byrd said.

Currently, for 42% of single women age 62 and older, Social Security is their only source of income. Women outlive men on average and so planning for retirement is usually much easier for men, who statistically die younger with more assets.

“Because a wife’s life expectancy is generally longer, and a husband’s benefits are typically higher, each case needs to be analyzed carefully and individually. Too many people file quickly, after only considering a few of their options. What’s worse is that the Social Security Administration’s new online filing system allows for quick decision-making. Folks will submit their request without any professional advice or planning. But a quick Social Security decision is really not best for anyone,” Byrd said.

Lee Byrd Tax & Business Services Inc. offers tax services to individuals and small businesses. He enjoys helping individuals and families save money on taxes. Give him a call (502) 231-3441, email Lee@LeeByrd.Biz or visit his website


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