Congress to avert Medicare premium increase

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About 55 million people receive Medicare and around 60 million people receive Social Security benefits. “Social Security is a supplement to your savings, investments, pensions and insurance plans”.

File and suspend” has its advocates, including Kotlikoff, who believe that eliminating the strategy would cause more Americans to take benefits too early, lowering their Social Security payouts for life. What is happening to America when everyone can get a free ride except its working-class citizens?

Christie is also in favor of raising the retirement age for collecting Social Security to 69, gradually implementing the change starting in 2022 by increasing the retirement age by two months each year until it reaches 69. Thus, they lose not only most or all of their spousal benefits (since retirement benefits generally exceed spousal benefits, and you can’t get both at once if forced to take both at once), but also the far higher benefits available by waiting until age 70 to collect. Married couples have the option of claiming Social Security based on their own work record, or up to 50% of the higher earning spouse’s benefit. “They didn’t change eligibility requirements or reduce the level of benefits”. In the meantime, their husbands or wives can apply for a portion of the spousal benefit they are entitled to once their spouse has filed. Why is it controversial?

He cuts taxes for seniors who want or need to work beyond retirement age and makes it easier for them to save. It means seniors will enjoy the benefit of full Social Security along with the income they earn from the job after retirement.

Existing file-and-suspend payments will be allowed.

Last week, I traveled across our state to ask Wisconsin seniors in Green Bay, Wausau, and Eau Claire one simple, but very important question: Is your retirement secure?

The budget deal provides temporary fixes.

Still, the rapid-fire nature of the budget deal shows the need for a more serious, long-range debate about Social Security. Yet because of a second law, known as the hold-harmless provision, those costs won’t be borne equally.

If passed in its present form, the bill would end file and suspend for future retirees.

The file-and-suspend maneuver is used by a wide variety of recipients.

This is precisely why I still recommend wealthier retirees consider delaying their benefits as long as possible – so that the COLAs compound onto higher benefit checks. That means older workers who want to use the strategy could still do so until early next year. In 2010 and 2011, Social Security cost-of-living adjustments didn’t occur, and that locked Medicare Part B premiums at $96.40 per month for those eligible for the hold-harmless provision while sending others’ payments up to $110.50 in 2010 and $115.40 in 2011.

And they told me that Social Security, more than any other factor, is crucial to their long term plans – yet they worry that Congress might once again put their Social Security benefits at risk.

 

According to the Social Security Administration, single women over 65 depend on Social Security for over half of their income. The package would prevent a 52 percent Medicare premium increase that will affect more than 8 million Part B enrollees in 2016 from going into effect.

Congress to avert Medicare premium increase

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