When You’re 66 – A Social Security and Medicare checklist

The oldest of the baby boomers will turn 66 this year. And, with all due apologies to Sir Paul McCartney, 66 is a much more significant marker in old age than 64, at least when it comes to retirement planning. As advisors know well, when you’re 66, you can claim full Social Security benefits; 65 is a close runner-up, since it’s the year most seniors will file for Medicare.

Social Security and Medicare may be outside the direct purview of most financial advisors. But advisors should understand the ins and outs of filing for both of these critical retirement benefits, and check up on clients to make sure they’re pursuing smart strategies and filing correctly. Social Security replaces one-third of income for the average retiree, and it’s an especially important source of longevity insurance for seniors who reach very advanced ages — especially women. Meanwhile, Medicare is a critical component in meeting the escalating cost of health care in retirement.

via When You’re 66.

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