Social Security is a federal insurance program in the United States that provides financial benefits to eligible individuals and their families. It was established in 1935 to provide financial support to retired workers and their families, as well as to those who are disabled or surviving spouses and children of deceased workers. The Social Security program is funded through payroll taxes, which are taken out of workers’ paychecks. The program is administered by the Social Security Administration (SSA).
When an individual can start collecting retirement benefits depends heavily upon the individual. Although generally, there are age limits set in place both for individuals who receive benefits on time and those who wish to collect them early.
What follows is a discussion on the ways in which age can affect Social Security benefits. With this information, individuals can choose the best route for their particular situation.
How Age is Considered When Applying for Social Security Benefits in Oregon
When it comes to receiving Social Security benefits in Oregon, age is one of the most important factors that is considered. The age at which an individual becomes eligible to receive full Social Security benefits is referred to as the “full retirement age” (FRA). The FRA is determined by the year of birth and ranges from 66 to 67 years old for those born between 1943 and 1960.
However, individuals can choose to start receiving benefits as early as age 62 or as late as age 70. If an individual decides to start receiving benefits before their FRA, their benefits will be reduced. On the other hand, if an individual decides to delay receiving benefits until after their FRA, their benefits will increase.
The Calculation of Social Security Benefit Amount
One of the ways age is considered when applying for Social Security benefits in Oregon is through the calculation of the benefit amount. The benefit amount is based on the average indexed monthly earnings (AIME) of the individual, which is calculated by taking the average of the highest 35 years of indexed earnings. The AIME is then used to determine the primary insurance amount (PIA), which is the monthly benefit an individual would receive at their FRA.
Eligibility Criteria for Disability Benefits
Another way age is considered is through the eligibility criteria for disability benefits. To be eligible for disability benefits, an individual must be under the age of 65 and have a medically determinable physical or mental impairment that prevents them from performing full-time work.
Eligibility Criteria for Survivors Benefits
Survivors’ benefits are also available to eligible individuals who are the surviving spouse or children of a deceased worker. The eligibility criteria for survivors’ benefits depend on the age of the surviving spouse and children. For example, a surviving spouse who is 60 years or older is eligible for survivor’s benefits, and a surviving child may be eligible for benefits until they reach the age of 18 (or 19 if still in secondary school). Also, a surviving spouse who is 50 years of age or older, and disabled, will also be eligible for benefits.
Age and Eligibility for Medicare
It is also worth noting that age is considered when determining eligibility for Medicare, which is a federal health insurance program for individuals 65 years and older, as well as for those with disabilities. In Oregon, individuals who are eligible for Social Security benefits are also eligible for Medicare, and they are automatically enrolled in the program when they turn 65 years old.
The Importance of Understanding How Age Affects Social Security Benefits
As you can tell, age is a significant factor that is considered when applying for Social Security benefits in Oregon. The full retirement age, which ranges from 66 to 67 years old, is used to determine the benefit amount that an individual will receive. Additionally, age is considered when determining eligibility for disability benefits, survivors’ benefits, and Medicare. It is important for individuals to understand how their age affects their eligibility for Social Security benefits and to plan accordingly.
Individuals should take the time to educate themselves on the Social Security program and the various factors that are considered when determining eligibility for benefits. This includes understanding the full retirement age and the calculation of the benefit amount.
A Lawyer Can Help
If you have questions about Social Security benefits in Oregon or you have been denied disability benefits, an experienced Social Security attorney can help. Call Drew L. Johnson, P.C. Attorneys At Law today at (541) 434-6466.