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The Social Security program allows you to start receiving benefits as soon as you reach age 62. The question is, should you? From the Social Security Administration’s point of view, it’s simple: if a person lives to the average life expectancy, the person will eventually receive roughly the same amount in lifetime benefits no matter when he or she chooses to start receiving them. In actual practice, it’s not quite that straightforward.


There is no single “right” answer to the question of when to start receiving benefits. Can you afford to "retire early" and claim benefits at age 62, should you wait until your full retirement age, or can you wait until age 70 in order to receive the largest possible monthly benefit?


If you have a spouse, the decision about when to start receiving benefits gets more complicated (particularly if one person’s earnings were considerably higher than the other's). The timing of spousal benefits should be factored into your decision.


Our Social Security Analysis software can help you figure out how much retirement income you’ll receive at different claiming ages using different claiming strategies and will suggest your optimal benefit age and claiming selection.

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