March is Women’s History Month. While women have overcome countless challenges and inequalities in order to achieve success – it is important to remember that they are still faced with obstacles today. Preparing for retirement and attaining financial security is no easy task for anyone, but let’s consider the hardships women face and how they can overcome them.
Historically, women spend less time in the workforce than their counterparts. How does this impact their Social Security? Working less negatively affects many women because Social Security eligibility and benefit payments are based on how long you work and how much you earn.
Does the gender pay gap affect women’s Social Security benefits? Yes. In 2020, it was reported that a woman earns 83 cents for every dollar that a man makes. Security benefits are calculated based on an individual’s earnings. Therefore, the less income a woman has, the less Social Security benefits she will receive.
Women have a longer life expectancy than men. That’s a win, right? Living a longer life comes at a cost. When a woman lives longer, she needs more money. There are many associated costs with growing older and as a result of living longer, women have the potential to outlive their money. This “longevity risk” is a big concern.
What Social Security rules are important for women to understand? There are many important concepts that can help women make the most out of their potential Social Security benefits. Understanding your eligibility for benefits or multiple benefits, knowing rules regarding spousal, ex-spousal, and survivor benefits, analyzing strategies to maximize your benefit, and much more.
Can women overcome these hardships? Yes! And working with a professional, like an RSSA, can help you make the best decisions for your personal circumstances.