A Guide to Starting Social Security Benefits

9 Pages Posted: 4 Aug 2008

See all articles by Richard L. Kaplan

Richard L. Kaplan

University of Illinois College of Law

Date Written: July 31, 2008


When a person should begin taking Social Security retirement benefits is a critical question for planning one's retirement. This article explains the various factors at play in determining the optimum starting point, including: longevity considerations; spousal implications, whether for a previously employed or a previously unemployed spouse; the impact of post-retirement employment; the availability of health insurance prior to Medicare eligibility for the worker and the worker's spouse; alternative sources of retirement income, including distributions from retirement savings plan assets and lifetime liquidation of nonretirement assets (and the pertinent income tax ramifications); and anticipated investment strategies.

JEL Classification: G23, G29, J26

Suggested Citation

Kaplan, Richard L., A Guide to Starting Social Security Benefits (July 31, 2008). Journal of Retirement Planning, July-August 2008, U Illinois Law & Economics Research Paper No. LE08-025, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1192902

Richard L. Kaplan (Contact Author)

University of Illinois College of Law ( email )

504 E. Pennsylvania Avenue
Champaign, IL 61820
United States
(217) 333-2499 (Phone)
(217) 244-1478 (Fax)

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