September, 2021

Social Security September Newsletter

Social Security Spotlight: Work History & Earnings Record
NARSSA | Social Security Newsletter | September 2021


Monthly Newsletter
September 2021
NARSSA Announcements
Social Security Expert Devin Carroll Announces Strategic Alliance with NARSSA
NARSSA has partnered with Devin Carroll, the major online influencer for Social Security education to the consumer. They will be collaborating on several strategic initiatives…Read more
NARSSA Partners with World System Builder
NARSSA has announced a partnership with World System Builder (WSB), a large partner of World Financial Group (a Transamerica Company) the leading community of financial professionals…Read more
Catch Up With Devin
2022 Social Security COLA: Becoming Clear
Devin explains the Cost of Living Adjustment, how it is calculated, and what it may look like for 2022.
Social Security: Time is Running Out
Devin breaks down the 2021 Social Security Trustees Report’s findings.
Top Stories
Source: RSSA
The Social Security Board of Trustees released its annual report. Read its findings regarding the long-term financial status of the Social Security Trust Funds.
Source: MarketWatch
Martha Shedden, NARSSA’s co-founder, shares with MarketWatch 10 statements she often hears regarding Social Security. Discover if each statement is true or false.
Source: Financial Advisor Magazine

FA Magazine asks Martha Shedden to contribute her thoughts on the Trustee Report. Martha believes that congress needs to and will take action to ensure that benefits do not get reduced.

Source: MarketWatch
Martha Shedden speaks with MarketWatch and explains why she thinks that you don’t need to be overly worried. She encourages all generations, young and old, to care about what happens to the program.
Ask Martha
Question: I am soon to be 65 in September. I am drawing disability. I met with a Social Security agent in 2019 and asked if I could apply for Survivor’s benefits, because my husband died in 2012. He told me I could not have both disability and Survivor’s Benefits. Is that true?
Response: If you are currently collecting a disability benefit, you may be eligible to switch to a survivor benefit if it is higher than your disability benefit. However, you are not able to collect both together…
Social Security Spotlight: Work History & Earnings Record
What is an earnings record? The Social Security Administration has a written record of all your earnings under your name and Social Security number. This record will be used to calculate your future benefits.

How can I check my work history and earnings record? You can access your personal earnings record by visiting your mySocialSecurity account. If you don’t have an account, you can create one for free at You may also receive a Social Security statement in the mail which will include your earnings history.

Why is it important that your earnings record is accurate? It is important that you take a look at the information on your record and make sure the details are accurate because your earnings history has a direct impact on the amount of benefits you (and your family members) are entitled to.

How will my work history impact my future benefits? One of the eligibility requirements for Social Security benefits is having a minimum of 40 work “credits” to qualify for Social Security benefits. The amount of earnings required for one credit in 2021 is $1,470. The credit may only be earned from a job that pays Social Security payroll taxes. You cannot earn more than 4 credits in one year and therefore, you must work a minimum of 10 years in order to earn those 40 credits. Additionally, your benefits will be calculated using the highest 35 years of your earnings.

What should I do if I find an error on my record? Contact the Social Security Administration if you need to correct your earnings record.

Learn how to correct your earnings record here.

Case Study of the Month
I recently worked with a client couple. The wife didn’t qualify for her own Social Security benefits because she didn’t have enough quarters of coverage and would not be expected to in the future. She did however have a significant non-covered pension. My clients were unfamiliar with the GPO (Government Pension Offset). This rule potentially eliminates a Spousal Benefit and potentially a Survivor Benefit in the future. In this case, the GPO eliminated the wife’s spousal benefit, but understanding the rules and timing created an opportunity to collect a spousal benefit prior to starting distributions from the pension. As a result, the wife will be able to receive a spousal benefit by delaying pension distributions and her pension amount will increase as well. My clients were grateful to know their options and the financial impacts to their retirement income.
If you want help making the best Social Security decisions for you and your loved ones, work with a Registered Social Security Analyst.
Listen Up: Podcasts By Our RSSA Team
The Devin Carroll Show
The Devin Carroll Show sponsored by NARSSA is a caller-driven show that helps you simplify the complicated Social Security rules so you can get every dollar in benefits you deserve. Listen now.
Social Security: Answers from the experts
Host Martha Shedden meets with prominent financial experts to discuss important issues on Social Security and retirement planning. Stay tuned!
Artistic Finance: Episode 68
Matthew Kweller, RSSA® , CFP® is interviewed by Ethan Steimel as they discuss the ins and outs of finding a financial advisor. Listen 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. Request a consultation today. Get help now.
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 sign up for our self-study program? Sign up now.

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