Social Security Changes in 2016 Provide Opportunities for Impact
- By Michael Hall
- December 30, 2015
Another year is coming to an end. As you plan for 2016 and all of the opportunities it may bring, keep in mind that Congress has made major changes to everyone’s Social Security filing options.
One of the most popular filing strategies File & Suspend, which allows an individual that has reached full retirement age to file and suspend benefits, is being eliminated. Under this strategy as benefits are suspended, they accrue an additional 8% credit each year up to age 70. At the same time, the spouse can file for spousal benefits and continue to accrue their own 8% credit up to age 70. This filing option has resulted in large increases of Social Security income for many Americans.
Congress has eliminated this option for 2016, but there is a window open to take advantage of File & Suspend that only lasts until April 30, 2016.
What should you do?###
1) Make a list of all the clients and prospects you have that are at or near their full retirement age of 66. This list should include both spouses because there are multiple filing options available.
2) Contact everyone on your list that is or will be 66 before April 30, 2016.
3) Convey this simple value proposition:
Many of our clients are finding value in a brief retirement consultation. Congress has made changes to Social Security and reviewing where you are and the options that are going to be eliminated this year at the end of April may help you increase your social security income. We have a tool that will allow us to map out a strategy for maximizing Social Security income and improving your overall retirement lifestyle.
The goal for this brief retirement consultation is to gather their information and provide them with a vision for how planning can increase their peace of mind about retirement.
Many of our advisors are finding that this Social Security conversation opens the door to many other planning opportunities.