August, 2022

Social Security August Newsletter

Social Security Spotlight: Managing Multiple Benefits
NARSSA | Social Security Newsletter | August 2022
August 2022 Newsletter


Hi There. Please enjoy reading our August newsletter filled with news and information on Social Security, retirement, and Medicare. Please reach out at with any feedback on our newsletters. We are always happy to hear from you!


NARSSA Announcements  

The NARSSA leadership team recently attended World System Builder’s G22 Financial Literacy Campaign in Texas. Our Senior Registered Social Security Analyst, Thomas Drapala presented to 10,000 attendees at this incredible event. He spoke about helping clients optimize their Social Security benefits and the importance of helping friends, family, and clients with their claiming decisions. Visit RSSA’s Instagram to view photos from this event and past events. And be sure to follow our Instagram account for the latest updates!
Have you checked out the RSSA YouTube channel? We have tons of videos to check out. And we recently added a new series, Social Security with Tom. Each episode in this series will feature different Social Security topics, strategies, client questions and much more to help you optimize your Social Security. Subscribe to our YouTube channel here.


Catch up with Devin  


Social Security Spousal Benefits can be very complicated, but in this video, Devin Carroll, RSSA helps break it down in a way that makes it easier to understand. Watch now.


Top Stories  

Source: Financial Advisor Magazine
If inflation persists, the 2023 Social Security cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) could be very big. NARSSA President & Co-Founder shares her thoughts on inflation and the value of Social Security with FA Magazine’s, Tracey Longo.
Source: WealthManagement
Journalist Mark Miller interviews NARSSA President & Co-Founder Martha Shedden. He asks her to share the five most common advisor errors and misunderstandings when working with clients on Social Security.
Source: RSSA
The Social Security Act was signed into law by President Franklin D. Roosevelt on August 14, 1935 which means Social Security will be celebrating its 87th birthday next week. What birthday will you be celebrating next? Are you approaching retirement? Do you plan on collecting Social Security in the near future? Here are the most important birthdays to keep in mind as they can have a direct impact on your retirement and Social Security income.


Ask Martha  


Question: I understand my wife can receive half my Social Security benefit, as her Social Security benefit. For her to receive the maximum amount this does she need to wait until her FRA? I am 3.5 years older than her and will reach my FRA mid-2023. 


Martha’s response: If your wife is not entitled to her own retirement benefit, or if her retirement benefit amount is less than the spousal benefit amount, then yes, she is entitled to a spousal benefit once you start collecting your retirement benefit. The amount of the spousal benefit is based on the age…Read Martha’s full response or Ask Martha your own question.


Social Security Spotlight: Managing Multiple Benefits   

What are the different types of Social Security benefits? Social Security benefits is an umbrella term which includes retirement benefits, spousal benefits, survivor benefits, and disability benefits.

Can I collect two benefits? If you are eligible to collect more than one benefit, you will only be able to receive the amount equal to the higher benefit. For example, if you are eligible for your own retirement benefit as well as a spousal benefit, you will receive the amount that is the higher of the two benefits.

What about Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits? The Supplemental Security Income (SSI) program is a federal program funded by general tax revenues (not Social Security taxes). It provides monthly payments to adults and children with disabilities or blindness, to meet basic needs for food, clothing, and shelter if their income and resources are below specific financial limits. You may be eligible to receive SSI monthly payments even if you are already receiving Social Security retirement or disability benefits.

Can I choose which benefit I receive? You will not get to choose because of a rule called “deemed filing.” When you file for a benefit, you are deemed to be filing for all of your eligible benefits. The Social Security Administration will give you the highest of the benefits you are eligible for. There are two exceptions to this rule. One is filing a “restricted application,” but this is only available to those born in 1953 or earlier. The other exception is to those who are eligible for survivor benefits. You can receive survivor benefits while waiting to file for your own benefit.

What is a family maximum benefit? Sometimes there are multiple family members receiving benefits based on the retiree’s earnings, such as widow(er)s and children. The total of family benefits may not exceed the family maximum benefit threshold.

Learn more about multiple benefits.


Case Study of the Month  

A client of mine retired and started collecting his Social Security and non-covered pension over 10 years ago. At that time, he wasn’t aware that he needed to report the pension to the Social Security Administration! The Administration didn’t catch that he had a pension for many years, but eventually sent him a WEP overpayment notice. The amount seemed too high, so he reached out to an RSSA to verify the amount. He was fortunately able to send a Request for Reconsideration within the 60-day time limit. While we try to guide clients to avoid these situations, RSSAs can still support someone facing an overpayment.


Listen up: Social Security Podcast


In this episode, Martha talks with Tom Hegna, an economist, author, and retirement expert. Tom Hegna has been an incredibly popular industry speaker for many years and is considered by many to be the Retirement Income Expert. As a former First Vice President at New York Life, retired Lieutenant Colonel, and economist, Tom has delivered over 5,000 seminars on his signature “Paychecks and Playchecks” retirement approach, helping Baby Boomers and seniors retire the “optimal” way. Martha sits down with Tom Hegna and they discuss many aspects of his wide-ranging knowledge on retirement planning.


You can listen to Social Security Answers from the Experts on Spotify, Google, Apple or anywhere you listen to podcasts. You can even watch the live recordings on our YouTube channel. Listen here or watch on YouTube.


Medicare Update  


What’s in the Inflation Reduction Act, Democrats’ health care, climate and tax bill?

Source: CBS News


Over the weekend, the Senate passed a new piece of legislation called the Inflation Reduction Act. In addition to climate, energy, and tax reforms, the bill also addresses healthcare and Medicare. This bill aims to lower the cost of prescription drugs for Medicare beneficiaries. It also sets an annual cap for out-of-pocket spending and a cap for the cost of insulin for Medicare enrollees. Read to learn more.


Train to become a Social Security expert  

Are you a financial or state-licensed professional? Download our free white paper and discover the benefits of becoming a Social Security expert and offering Social Security advisory services to your clients. Ready to get started with our self-study program? Sign up now.


Consult with an RSSA to optimize your benefits  

Most people make a sub-optimal filing decision, losing out on money they are entitled to. An RSSA can help you optimize your Social Security benefits and support you in making the best decisions for your personal situation. Get help now.


Advisor Support Program

Are you a financial advisor, CPA, lawyer or NARSSA member with clients that need help with Social Security? Join our Advisor Support Program. We can help your clients take advantage of strategies that may yield hundreds of thousands of dollars in additional lifetime benefits. It’s simple. Enter your client’s information into the secure portal and we’ll provide you with a percentage of the invoice. Learn more.

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