Social Security Retirement Benefits for Seniors in Georgia
Social Security retirement for seniors in Georgia is a benefit that most workers earn over the course of a lifetime. Seniors Social Security retirement eligibility depends on how many credits each retiree earned during his or her years of working, which is calculated according to the amount of Social Security taxes paid into the system. The age that a worker chooses to apply for seniors social security retirement also has a big influence on the amount of benefits received each month after retiring. In Georgia, the Social Security Administration (SSA) manages the issuance of benefits through a statewide network of offices, and it offers convenient enrollment options. Study the sections below to learn more about which workers are eligible for seniors Social Security retirement benefits, how to apply for benefits and the advantages to receiving retirement benefits from the SSA.
Eligibility for Retirement Benefits in Georgia
To be eligible for Georgia seniors Social Security retirement benefits, you must have earned a certain number of credits with the SSA. While Social Security retirement for seniors in GA is based on credits earned, you do not have to earn all of your credits consecutively. For instance, a woman who begins working after college, then takes a few years off to raise a family will not earn credits toward her Social Security retirement benefits during the years she is unemployed at home. However, all the credits earned before will remain on her SSA record. When she returns to the workforce and begins paying Social Security taxes again, her new credits will be added to the total.
Although you need a minimum number of credits to be eligible for Social Security retirement in Georgia, your benefit payment will be higher if you continue earning credits by working longer. When workers wonder, “How much do senior citizens get from Social Security retirement benefits?” the amount is largely variable. However, higher lifetime earnings equal higher benefit payments during retirement. You may keep track of how much you can expect to get from Social Security by creating a “My Social Security” account online. Although the SSA used to mail annual statements to all workers, now only workers older than 60 years of age without online SSA accounts receive mailed statements three months prior to their birthday.
How Age Affects Social Security Retirement Benefits
Knowing when and how to apply for seniors Social Security retirement benefits should include considering the age at which you hope to retire. How much senior citizens get from Social Security depends on whether you wish to retire early, at full retirement age or continue working past that milestone. The full retirement age varies by the year in which the claimant was born. Workers who were born prior to a certain year will be able to reach full retirement age earlier than those born later will. It is important for you to confirm when you reach full retirement age, as requesting benefits earlier will result in a reduced amount. Although you are eligible for seniors Social Security retirement at an earlier age, doing so means that you agree to accept a reduced payment. Conversely, if you work past full retirement age, then you will continue earning credits and end up receiving a higher benefit payment each month. The SSA realizes that deciding when to submit your seniors Social Security retirement application is a highly personal decision and it offers several online tools to help you calculate the best retirement age for you and your family’s needs.
For comprehensive information on full retirement age, the consequences of retiring early and the benefits of retiring later, download our free guide.
Advantages to Receiving Social Security Retirement Benefits
Over 95 percent of American workers participate in Social Security retirement for seniors, as it can make a significant contribution toward enjoying a comfortable lifestyle during retirement. Seniors Social Security retirement eligibility also extends to your spouse and any dependent children or dependent grandchildren living in your home. Many people who apply for seniors Social Security retirement find comfort in knowing that their loved ones can also obtain survivor’s benefits in the event of an untimely death.
How to Apply for Social Security Retirement Benefits in Georgia
The seniors Social Security retirement application process is easiest if completed online, but you also have the option of applying in person or by phone. You may apply for seniors Social Security retirement benefits online any time of the day or night, and avoid the inconvenience of making and keeping an appointment at an SSA office in Georgia. Before starting your seniors Social Security retirement application process online, the SSA suggests compiling the following:
- Identification and marriage information about you and your spouse
- Details about qualifying children and dependents
- Military service data, if applicable
- Self-employment and business figures, if applicable
- Bank account numbers for direct deposit
If you need to take a break while entering information on your seniors Social Security retirement application online, then you may save it and come back to finish it later. If you prefer to apply in person or over the phone, then call the SSA during business hours. You may then provide your information and complete your seniors Social Security retirement application over the phone or set up an appointment to apply in person at your nearest Georgia SSA office. After the SSA processes your application, you will receive a written notification of their decision by mail.
Download our detailed guide for specific information and documents needed during the application process for SS retirement benefits.