Opinion: Here’s a way to get retirees to spend their savings responsibly. Getty Images Employers, academics, and policymakers all recognize that drawdown is the major challenge facing the 401(k) system. First, people form an unnatural attachment to their pile of assets, which they have spent a lifetime accumulating. Second, people are fearful of end-of-life health and long-term care expenses. Third, many people want to leave a bequest to ensure their immortality. Under this arrangement, a fund will allow participants, say, age 50 or older to invest a portion of their assets in deferred annuity accounts. When the fund reaches its target date, it will dissolve, participants will receive an annuity certificate providing for immediate or deferred annuity payments, and the remaining portion of the participant’s investment would need to be reinvested, either by the participant or a plan fiduciary, in other alternatives. Specifically, it stated that, if certain criteria were met, a series of target date funds that include deferred annuities among their assets would be treated as a single benefit and therefore should not raise plan qualification concerns. In addition to how a TDF series may satisfy Internal Revenue Code nondiscrimination requirements, Treasury asked for DOL views on these TDF/deferred annuity structures. •The DOL said that the annuity selection safe harbor (2008 Safe Harbor) applicable to defined contribution plans establishes a means for plan fiduciaries to satisfy responsibilities under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA) regarding annuity selection.
If it weren’t for Social Security, countless seniors would inevitably wind up living well below the poverty line. According to the Social Security Administration, 61% of retirees depend on their benefits to provide at least half of their monthly income, and for unmarried seniors, this number climbs to 71%. Because the age at which you first claim benefits impacts your ultimate payout, it’s crucial to find the right age to file.
Currently, American workers can claim Social Security retirement benefits at any point during an eight-year window starting at age 62 and ending at age 70, the latest age at which you’ll get an incentive for delaying benefits. Somewhere in that range is your full retirement age (FRA), which is based on the year you were born. For today’s older workers, that age will be 66, 67, or somewhere in between.
When most people contemplate when to take benefits, they’re typically choosing between filing as early as possible (at 62), filing at their FRA, or delaying past their FRA to get a boost in benefits. But because 65 has long been a popular age to retire in general, it’s also a contender for claiming benefits.
The question is: Should you file for Social Security at 65? There’s no one-size-fits-all answer, but keep reading, and you’ll get an idea of whether it’s the best choice for you.
Reasons to claim Social Security at 65
Claiming Social Security at 65 can be a smart idea under certain circumstances. Here are a couple of reasons to file for benefits at 65:
1. You’re close to full retirement age. The problem with filing for benefits early is that doing so results in a permanent reduction in your monthly payments. Specifically, you’ll lose 6.67% for each year you’re ahead of schedule for up to three years, and then 5% of your benefits for each year beyond that. However, while filing for Social Security at 65 will cut your benefits, you won’t face nearly as steep a reduction as you would by filing at 62. And if you have other compelling reasons to take benefits at that time — say, you’ve lost your job or need the extra income — then you’re better off slashing your benefits by 6.67% than you are charging up a storm on your credit card in order to pay the bills.
2. You’ll get extra cash to enjoy while you’re younger. Though many seniors rely on Social Security to pay the…