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When should my Wife take Social Security?

By Terry Savage on February 23, 2021 | Financial Planning / Retirement

My wife and I are both 62. We are both not working. I plan to wait until FRA (67+) or later to take Social Security.

My question is when should my wife take SS? She mainly was a stay at home mother and only was employed for some years. Her SS benefit is a lower amount compared to what she will get with SS spouse benefit. We understand she will get the SS spouse benefit when I take my SS at FRA (approx.1/2 of my SS).

So should she take her lower amount SS now at 62 and then when I take my SS at FRA her SS monthly amount get a boost per spouse benefit? Or if she takes her SS at 62 it will always be the lower amount and she won’t get SS spouse benefit when I take SS at FRA? Therefore we should wait for her to take her SS at FRA with me. Please advise.

Terry Says

this is a complicated issue and depends specifically on the benefits each has earned.
Please read this article at Vanguard, which walks you through the steps you should take to make this decision.

It might pay for her to take early SS on HER record, and then switch to collecting half of your benefits when you start — and for you to wait until age 70, if possible. Use the calculators at this link!
And be aware that an earlier strategy that allowed the best of both worlds was eliminated for those who reach age 62 after 2015.

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