Approaching retirement can be a time of great anticipation mixed with anxiety. Many people wonder whether they have saved enough money, have adequately covered their expenses, and whether they’re ready for this next stage of life. There are a few things to consider when approaching the retirement age limit, including a wide range of benefits and qualifying as a veteran for special benefits.
Approaching Retirement Age-Considerations
When you turn 50, there are a few milestones that will prepare you for the ultimate retirement. There are some things that you can do to make this process go more smoothly. At age 50, you are eligible to make “catch up” contributions to your IRA and 401k. Therefore, if you haven’t been saving enough, this is the time to start making extra payments.
Past the Age of 50
At age 55, you can start withdrawing from your 401(k) or other employer-sponsored plans without paying the additional 10% tax on top of your regular taxes. Most financial advisors will suggest that you continue to make contributions to grow your account before your retirement.
At age 59 1/2, you can make withdrawals from your employer-sponsored retirement plan without the 10% penalty. However, you will still need to pay the normal income tax on the withdrawals.
Past the Age of 60
At age 62, you can start receiving Social Security benefits. However, if you wait until age 70, your monthly disbursement will be bigger. You can choose to work until you’re 70, but there may be limits on how much you can earn between 62 and 70 for the purposes of Social Security.
One thing to consider is that if you stop working at 62 and lose your employer-sponsored health insurance benefits, you will have to cover your own insurance, either through COBRA or private insurance, until age 65. This is the age when you will be eligible for Medicare.
At age 65, you will be eligible for Medicare, the federal government’s sponsored healthcare plan that covers all or most of seniors’ hospital visits, medical appointments, and medications. Medicare comes in several parts: A, B, C, and D. The rules regarding eligibility for each plan are complex.
At age 66, anyone born after 1943 is entitled to full, unreduced Social Security benefits. You will receive 100 percent of your benefits for the duration of your life at this point. If you wish to work after the age of 66, there are rules about how much you can earn and still keep your benefits.
Retiring at 62 Versus Retiring at 70
The older you are when you choose to retire, the larger the amount of your lifetime monthly benefit. If you retire at 62, the annual payment is $18,000. If you wait until you are 70, the annual payment is $31,680. Between the ages of 62 and 70, you can still work and continue to earn money, but your earnings may be capped at a certain amount.
Qualifying for Veteran Status
The Veteran’s Administration and the Social Security Administration work together to ensure that every senior is eligible for the protection and coverage they need in retirement.
To be considered a veteran, the service member must have been honorably discharged from a qualifying war in which they served on active duty. Veterans can qualify for status after having completed 25 years of service if they are 55 or older and 20 years of service if they are 60 years or older.
For disabled veterans, there are additional services available, like driver’s license designations, medical centers tailored for disabled vets, lending programs, and benefits for family members. The Veterans’ Administration offers a veteran disability calculator that will help you determine exactly how much you will receive in benefits each month.
If you are a senior who has questions about Social Security benefits or a veteran who wants to know if you qualify for disability payments, a lawyer with a track record of results can help with your case. They will handle your case with the dignity and respect it deserves. Many law firms offer a free initial consultation.