Taxable Social Security Benefits

Taxpayers receiving Social Security benefits may have to pay federal income tax on a portion of those benefits.

Social Security benefits include monthly retirement, survivor and disability benefits. They don’t include supplemental security income payments, which aren’t taxable.

The portion of benefits that are taxable depends on the taxpayer’s income and filing status.

To find out if their benefits are taxable, taxpayers should:
• Take one half of the Social Security money they collected during the year and add it to their other income. Other income includes pensions, wages, interest, dividends and capital gains.
o If they are single and that total comes to more than $25,000, then part of their Social Security benefits may be taxable.
o If they are married filing jointly, they should take half of their Social Security, plus half of their spouse’s Social Security, and add that to all their combined income. If that total is more than $32,000, then part of their Social Security may be taxable.
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Taxes And Social Security-Clifford Benjamin

Social Security benefits include monthly retirement, survivor, and disability benefits; they do not include Supplemental Security Income (SSI) payments, which are not taxable.

Generally, you pay federal income taxes on your Social Security benefits only if you have other substantial income in addition to your benefits such as wages, self-employment, interest, dividends and other taxable income that must be reported on your tax return.

Your income and filing status affect whether you must pay taxes on your Social Security. An easy method of determining whether any of your benefits might be taxable is to add one-half of your Social Security benefits to all of your other income, including any tax-exempt interest.

If you receive Social Security benefits you should receive Form SSA-1099, Social Security Benefit Statement, showing the amount.
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If you receive Social Security benefits, you may have to pay federal income tax on part of your benefits. These tax tips will help you determine if you need to pay taxes on your benefits.

Form SSA-1099. If you received Social Security benefits in 2015, you should receive a Form SSA-1099, Social Security Benefit Statement, showing the amount of your benefits. Read More

Social Security – that onerous tax we pay to work in the United States, supposedly for our own retirement but it seems to be more to fund those who are already drawing on it! I have quite a few clients who are on temporary work visas here in the US. They rightfully question whether they will be able repatriate Social Security when they are eligible to draw on it. Or there are those US Citizens who travel after they retire and may even choose to settle abroad or go back to their home country if they had migrated to the USA.

Are You A US Citizen or Not?:

Retirees who are U.S. citizens are entitled to continue receiving benefits for as long as they live outside the United States. However, citizens of other countries who receive Social Security may have some restrictions on how long they can receive benefits while outside Read More

iStock_Social Security CardsXSmallThere is a lot to consider when deciding when to take your Social Security, but let’s start off with the basics.  Every year you get a statement from Social Security that tells you what your benefit will be when you retire.  Full retirement age is currently 66, but forty years from now I assume it will be much higher for me.  The statement will tell you the benefit is $20,000 (depending on your earnings history) when you are 66 years old.

But there are choices, so many choices to be made.  If you claim Social Security early (before you are 66) you get a smaller amount.  If you claim when you are 62 years old, you get 75% of the full amount which would be $15k a year in this case.  If you claim at 63 it’s 80%, 64 it’s 87% and at 65 it’s 93% of the full value.

Taking your Social Security early will pay off if you are planning on getting hit by a bus at your 71st birthday party, but if you are planning to live to 100 it probably won’t work out well.  Another choice is to claim the Social Security later at 67, 68, 69 or 70 years old.  For every year you wait after 66, you get an additional 8%.  Meaning if you wait until 70 years old, you get 132% of the full value every year for the rest of your life.  $26,400 instead of $20,000 a year is a big difference and over the long haul you will come out ahead. Read More