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4 Key Railroad Retirement Claiming Stategies for Widows(ers) Thumbnail

4 Key Railroad Retirement Claiming Stategies for Widows(ers)

Video Annuity Survivor Benefits Retirement

Welcome to another session with Highball Advisors Railroad Retirement Whiteboard! I'm John McNamara, and today, we're diving into survivor annuities and the best claiming strategies for widows or widowers. Although the industry is predominantly male, these strategies apply to everyone.

Let's delve into the survivor annuity. Tier two is straightforward: you either qualify with a connection or you don't. Now, onto tier one, which comprises 100% of the deceased railroader's tier one benefit.

Let's break it down by age groups. If the widow is 70 or older, it's simple: compare the survivor benefit to your own social security benefit and choose the higher one. You'll still receive tier two if you qualify.

For widows between full retirement age and 70, start with the railroad retirement benefit and switch to your own social security if it's more lucrative.

If the widow is younger than full retirement age, begin with the survivor annuity and wait until 70 to claim your own benefit. This delay ensures an 8% annual increase in your social security benefit. If your own benefits are lower, start the survivor annuity as early as 60, or even earlier if you have dependent children.

Always keep an eye on your social security statement to make informed decisions. If you're nearing retirement and need guidance on survivor annuity options, reach out to me for a thorough discussion. Don't forget to subscribe for more insights. Have a fantastic 4th of July, stay safe, and until next time, take care and stay on track!

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Disclaimer: This article is provided for general information and illustration purposes only. Nothing contained in the material constitutes tax advice, a recommendation for purchase or sale of any security, or investment advisory services. Highball Advisors encourages you to consult a financial planner, accountant, and/or legal counsel for advice specific to your situation. Reproduction of this material is prohibited without written permission from Highball Advisors, and all rights are reserved from Highball Advisors, and all rights are reserved.